Covering just 21,000km² (8,100 square miles), El Salvador is the smallest country in Central America. Which is why its neighbours call it the "pulgarcito de América", the Tom Thumb of America. With a population of seven million it is also the most densely populated country in the region, and while it is better known for its excellent coffee and fine beaches, El Salvador is in fact the industrial centre of Central America.
This year two of the country's leading print enterprises have opted for new Rapida sheetfed offset presses. One of them, Impredisa, was established on 9 September 1988 by the Simán group, which runs a chain of department stores in Central America. Situated in the historic centre of San Salvador, Impredisa specialises in the production of high-end catalogues, magazines and brochures. It has 50 permanent and 30 temporary staff.
Since space is limited the company looked for a correspondingly compact press, and the Rapida 75E fulfilled all its specifications. The model installed is a four-colour coater version, and for greater flexibility it has a maximum sheet size of 605 x 750mm (23.81 x 29.53in). The standard format is 530 x 750mm, or 20.86 x 29.53in. According to Impredisa production manager René Castro, the main reasons for choosing this half-format KBA press were its special format, compact design, energy efficiency and ability to print more ecologically with reduced alcohol. Conservation is a major focus of all the enterprises in the Simán group, which sees itself as a regional mover and shaker in the use of green technology.
With the new KBA Rapida 75E Impredisa is planning to capture new markets and niches with products of exceptionally high quality. Thanks to the Rapida 75E's innovative technology and inline coating capability the company can now offer beautifully finished prints.
The second print firm to join the swelling circle of KBA customers in Central America is San Salvador-based Algier's Impresores, a family business founded back in mid-1977 by the Alger brothers. They were trained by their German-born father Lud Dreikorn, a qualified printer who established the first lithographic enterprise in El Salvador and soon engendered a love of the graphic arts in his young sons. Today Algier's Impresores is a successful flexo and offset printer.
The company's chief product lines are packaging and commercials, and a large proportion of its output is exported to other countries in the region. Juan Alger is well-known in the national print media industry for his keen enthusiasm and rigorous quality standards. What impressed him most about the Rapida 75E was its advanced technology and superb cost efficiency. A new Rapida 75E six-colour coater press went live in his production hall at the end of July. This, too, is engineered for the larger 605 x 750mm format.
Algier's Impresores is on a growth curve and therefore constantly on the lookout for technological innovations. So the Rapida 75E was a welcome addition.
Both the new Rapida 75E users in El Salvador are actively squaring up to the challenges posed by the print media market. KBA, as a global vendor, has provided the tools.