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MAN Roland Books $560 Million at Drupa, Printers praise the show

Press release from the issuing company

Düsseldorf, Germany — MAN Roland exceeded its sales projections at drupa 2004, booking orders that tally up to EUR 470 million (US$560 million) and include sheetfed, commercial web and newspaper web products. Gerd Finkbeiner, MAN Roland’s CEO, said that his company’s focus on applications, added value and automation was well received by the estimated 280,000 visitors to the PrintCity exhibition where MAN Roland demonstrated its presses and new technology. “Things are not yet good, but we have generated positive vibes by showing our customers many innovations and developments that can benefit them and their customers in turn,” Finkbeiner declared. “At drupa 2004 we’ve done everything in our power to strengthen print so that optimism returns to the industry after three years of recession. And so all of us at MAN Roland are very encouraged that the show has been a success for us, with orders booked at drupa amounting to EUR 470 million, which is well above our moderate expectations.” Printers from North America who attended the show also registered their enthusiasm for the graphic arts industry’s most ambitious exposition. Pennsylvanian Printer Purchases a Press “drupa is very special to me,” said Jamie Bentley, owner and president of Bentley Graphic Communications in Pottstown, Pennsylvania. “You get to meet with old friends who you haven’t seen for years. That gives us a chance to compare notes and swap stories. “But most importantly, when you attend drupa, you’re the first to see our industry’s newest developments and innovations. You can’t put a price on the value of that experience.” Bentley signed up for a six-color ROLAND 700 at drupa. The 41-inch press carries an in-line coater and is equipped for hybrid UV production. “Being able to print with conventional and UV inks and coatings on the same press is a very unique and powerful combination,” he said. “I don’t think there are many presses configured like this in the Philadelphia area. That means we’ll be able to differentiate ourselves by having UV capabilities. And with this press, we can apply spot UV as well as flooding the sheet with a UV coating. That gives our customers more options.” A Western Perspective Attending drupa on behalf of Utah Paper Box Company, located in Salt Lake City, were Steve Keyser, Vice President of Sales, and Mike Salazar, Vice President of Operations. “We were in Düsseldorf for almost an entire week,” Keyser said. “This is our first drupa and we wanted to do it right. There’s so much there that it’s a bit overwhelming, but very impressive. It’s the biggest trade show I’ve ever attended.” The Utah Paper Box executives were particularly inspired by PrintCity and the exhibit’s working production plants that integrated equipment from 58 different manufacturers. “We thought PrintCity was brilliant,” said Salazar. “I liked the fact that actual products were being produced. It showed how the latest technology can improve every step of the production process, which gives us ideas on how we can do things faster, better or more creatively.” Salazar called MAN Roland’s DirectDrive demonstration at drupa “one more step in the right direction.” The innovation isolates the plate cylinder from the rest of the press to deliver a host of between-job and run-time benefits. “It's another innovation that will help speed the makeready process and get the press up and running faster and more efficiently,” he said. “ Keyser pointed to the Prindor foiler and the EagleEye quality control device that was part of the show on the ROLAND 700. “In-line automation helps us keep the cost down so we can offer more to our customers and keep more in our pockets,” he noted. Veteran Observer Likes What He Sees George Kallas, president of Metropolitan Fine Printers in Vancouver, traditionally attends all 14 days of drupa. “I do one hall at a time,” he says. “It’s the best way to do it to make sure you’re not missing anything, and not wasting time doubling back. “drupa gives me a vision what the future holds for our industry. One of the reasons I attend is because I want to see what kind of machinery can put me out of business, so I can buy it before anyone else does.” The PrintCity showcase in Hall 6 was Kallas’ favorite: “It’s like a working printing facility. That gives you a better perspective on how your print shop might incorporate the latest technology. The way all of the automated solutions are interlinked makes so much sense for the future of printing.” Kallas was also impressed by MAN Roland’s QuickChange and DirectDrive advancements. “Anywhere you can shave a minute here or there it can really help your bottom line,” he noted. The InlineSorter, which worked with EagleEye to identify and remove reject sheets from the workflow, also caught Kallas’ eye. “I will definitely have that on my next new press. The press operator can do other things instead of worrying about pulling sheets. It’s a great invention.” Show organizers announced that 394,000 visitors attended drupa, more than the number for drupa 2000. Around 70%, or almost 280,000, visited PrintCity in Hall 6 where they saw the MAN Roland exhibits. In fact, PrintCity was the busiest hall at the show, with the world’s most modern printing plant encompassing over 172,000 sq ft and producing literally dozens of printed products every drupa day. “PrintCity gave MAN Roland and our 57 production partners the opportunity to show how our new technology functions in the working world,” said Yves Rogivue, CEO of MAN Roland Inc. “That sent a clear message to drupa visitors that these innovations are proven and ready to accelerate their workflows right now.”