The Digital Division of Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG
(Heidelberg) brings together the company's prepress and digital
It was founded in the 1999/2000 fiscal year. On April 1,
1999, Heidelberg took over the Office Imaging/Black/White Digital
Printing Division of Eastman Kodak Company. Heidelberg and Eastman
Kodak Company formed a joint venture known as Nexpress for
developing digital color presses.
The Digital Division has production sites in the USA
(Rochester, New York), Mexico (Tijuana), the UK (Kirkby) and
Germany (Kiel and Mühlhausen). It achieved sales in the
1999/2000 fiscal year of 659 million Euro and had a workforce of
4,169 (excluding employees of the Nexpress joint venture).
Unlike conventional printing processes, digital printing
does not require extensive preparation time. Digital data can be
used to produce direct, high-quality printing. Digital printing is
currently particularly suitable for small runs. Heidelberg does not
see digital printing as a replacement for offset printing, but
rather as complementing it. Digital printing provides customers
with new, highly promising areas of operation, particularly in the
highly attractive field of customer-specific personalized print
products (Print on Demand).
Digital black/white printing - opening up new market
The Heidelberg Digimaster 9110 offers the best print quality
in its class, superior paper transport, an open system architecture
and an end-to-end workflow. It has therefore quickly become a top
of the line product in its market segment. The company aims to
achieve a market share of around 20 percent in this product segment
within five years. 2,000 systems have already been shipped
worldwide within just 20 months.
The Digimaster covers four different customer segments - the
print media industry, in-plant print shops, quick-print copyshops
and IT centers. To be able to penetrate each of these segments
effectively, Heidelberg has developed a multi-channel sales
strategy. Heidelberg supplies the digital print solution through
its own sales organization and also works with various sales
partners such as IBM, Canon and Danka, each of which has their own
specific knowledge of the market.
Digital color printing - launched successfully at drupa 2000
The Nexpress 2100 digital color press has set about
capturing the market for high-quality personalized print products.
Following an enthusiastic reception from members of the graphic
arts industry, Heidelberg is now preparing the product for series
production. The competitive advantages include lower service costs
and higher machine availability, since the Nexpress 2100 can be
maintained by operating personnel themselves.
Prepress - innovative products
The Digital Division has introduced a number of
pioneering product innovations in the prepress sector. In addition
to a digital camera back, Heidelberg has also enjoyed great success
with the Nexscan and Linoscan series of innovative flatbed
scanners. The Nexscan has already become one of the world's most
successful high-end scanners, over 1,000 units having already been
sold within 12 months. New filmsetters and platesetters have also
been launched successfully onto the market. Color fidelity software
and comprehensive process management solutions complete with
databases round off the Digital Division's portfolio.
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