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Belfast firm invests in prepress, press, workflow and web to print


Minprint is starting the year in proactive form by installing a Speedmaster XL 75-4+L, a B2 four-colour press with coater armed with Inpress Control.

The company also plans to undertake Heidelberg’s ISO 12647-2 colour certification scheme to ensure top class quality in every print run.

To complete the investment, Minprint is adding a Suprasetter A 75 CtP device to enhance its digital workflow.

The directors believe this will pave the way for the launch of the company’s new bespoke web to print site – GoGetPrint.com.

Training on the new Speedmaster XL 75 is now well underway, and print operators will move to full production by the end of the month. This configuration, a replacement for a CD 74-5, recognises that the demand for coating and varnishing is greater than for spot colours.

“As this is our first coating press, the consumables consultation, support and back up offered by Heidelberg UK made the investment in coating an easy decision to make,” says Jamie McMinnis, director.

There is also a move from offline Axis Control spectral measurement to the automated register and colour monitoring and adjustment system, InpressControl.

Gary Davidson, production director, says: “This takes the guesswork out of printing and is of particular value with uncoated stocks where predicting the level of ink absorbency matters. Uncoateds have really taken off in the last couple of years. We believe that the waste saving we achieve with this tool will give us a payback on Inpress Control within two years.”

Minprint has noticed the demand for quicker turnrounds and reduced print runs, with margins being squeezed – resulting in a rise in turnover but profitability remained static. With the investment in this press, the management believes it can attract new work by branching into the fine art, advertising and design agency sectors, as well as retaining and extending services to existing commercial print customers.

The company operates a double day shift, with the flexibility of an additional shift when demand is high.

Minprint’s customer base extends throughout the UK and Ireland, so a quality service is vital with this growing market outside Northern Ireland.

Regular customers are already supplied with templates for their less complicated jobs, but the launch of the company’s web to print site will enable them to increase the range of products offered and a greater input within secure brand parameters.

Minprint’s Go Get Print website is of great benefit to customers just needing ‘one off’ orders as it is so quick and easy to navigate.

“This press, and the speed of makereadies made possible with Inpress Control, will re-draw the lines between offset and our digital and wide format services,” says Mr McMinnis. “Some more challenging work will automatically go to offset, even in very short runs.”

The Speedmaster XL will undergo its Print Colour Management (PCM) programme in March and that will pave the way for ISO 12647-2 testing, followed by colour certification.

The Suprasetter is a straightforward ‘like for like’ replacement to the latest generation machine, but with this move the company will switch to Saphira Chem-free plates, a more environmental choice.

Minprint is using Prinect workflow products across prepress and press room areas and linking production to the company’s Shuttleworth MIS system. This helps efficiencies with JDF files pre-configuring settings and JMF feedback upstream. The company considered linking in the folding but felt the benefits were not great enough for them at this stage.

“It’s been tough for everyone, but we notice enquiry levels increasing and a greater willingness to pay for added value or special finishes,” says Mr McMinnis. “We have also ventured into the Cross Media market which has been well received by our customers.

We were thrilled to win Best External Publication for design at the CIPR awards with the Ulster Rugby programmes we currently print and publish online for the Ulster Rugby fans. The added bonus was that our customer actually nominated us for this award!”

For further information please contact:
Diana Thompson, Plus Point PR Ltd, on 01494-81717
Matt Rockley, Heidelberg UK, on 020 8490 3500
Jamie McMinnis, Minprint, on 028 9070 5205.

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