KBA News Feed http://www.koenig-bauer.com/ en Koenig & Bauer AG Sat, 22 Sep 2018 07:20:27 +0200 Sat, 22 Sep 2018 07:20:27 +0200 news-1127 Tue, 11 Sep 2018 23:09:11 +0200 Another New Koenig & Bauer Rapida 106 Six-Color Press Supports Significant Growth at Crossmark Graphics https://us.koenig-bauer.com/news/details/article/another-new-koenig-bauer-rapida-106-six-color-press-supports-significant-growth-at-crossmark-graphics/
  • Record-setting 2017 posting a 25% sales volume increase, seeking to surpass that number in 2018
  • An additional new industry-leading Koenig & Bauer Rapida 106 arrived this summer  
  • Existing Rapida 106 is more than 20% more productive than non-Koenig & Bauer being removed and handles a much wider ranges of substrates with ease
  • Increasing its customer base with value-added specialty and challenging print jobs

    While some printers rely on basic conventional print jobs, others set themselves apart by answering the daily challenges put forth by their design and brand customers and rewarding them with high quality award-winning projects. Crossmark Graphics, a 60-employee, woman-owned firm, which provides printing on plastics, packaging, point-of-purchase, lenticular and direct mail, in addition to a range of commercial work, falls into the latter category. This WI-based firm, founded by Jim Dobrzynski Sr in 1987, prides itself on becoming a trusted partner—not simply a supplier---to customers in the pharmaceutical, retail, automotive and technology markets. It has found tremendous growth opportunities with this business model leading to a record 2017 sales year and seeking to surpass that number in 2018.

    Left to right) The Crossmark Graphics management team of Brian Dobrzynski, Mark Dobrzynski, Tammy Rechner, Jim Dobrzynski Sr., and Jim Dobrzynski, celebrates the firepower of an additional new Koenig & Bauer press at its 65,000 sq ft facility.

    “Our goal is to make magic on paper or whatever unique substrate we’re using,” says Jim Dobrzynski Sr. “Every day, we’re faced with new challenging jobs that utilize different techniques. It’s our mandate to use individually adapted processes for whatever we’re producing: lenticular greeting cards, promotional giveaways, or food packaging. Our success is based on being a solution-oriented customer-centric business.”

    Having just marked its 30 year anniversary, Crossmark is celebrating a record-setting 2017, posting a sales increase of 25%. Orders are flowing into the business this year at a fast rate and sales, says Dobrzynski, could easily surpass last year’s high mark. To keep up with this sales explosion, the industry-leading firm is supporting its exceptional growth with the additional firepower of a new Koenig & Bauer press to its 65,000 sq ft facility, which was installed in late summer.

    “Eighteen months ago, we installed our first Koenig & Bauer Rapida press, renowned for many industry-leading technologies for automation, quality and speed, and being able to handle paper, plastic film substrates and board up to 40 point,” says Dobrzynski. “It’s become our workhorse running two shifts a day Monday through Thursday and one shift on Friday. To keep up with our extraordinary demand, we signed a new contract for a second Rapida 106 41-inch six-color press to run in tandem with our existing Koenig & Bauer. It couldn’t get here fast enough. Why did we choose Koenig & Bauer once again? Because our existing Rapida 106 is more than 20% more productive than the non-Koenig & Bauer press that we’re removing from our facility and that press is less than five years old. Plus, our customers actually ask to have their jobs printed on the Rapida 106 due to its exceptional high quality.”

    To squeeze even more efficiency from its workflow, Crossmark is taking advantage of Koenig & Bauer’s innovative technology and incorporating its DriveTronic SIS sidelay-free infeed, and fully automated plate changing system on the incoming Rapida 106 press. This system will boost production at Crossmark, making it even more efficient and profitable, as well as furthering faster turnaround, and increasing output. Ultrafast makeready will be enjoyed due to simultaneous plate changing, and inline color measurements and fully automated register will safeguard quality, and maximum production speed of 18,000 sheets per hour will be accomplished. 

    To ensure that is customers receive quality compliant execution, Crossmark has also invested in Koenig & Bauer’s QualiTronic ColorControl for inline color control with touchscreen. This system measures every sheet for constant print quality over the whole length of a run. Another highlight of the press is its energy-saving environmentally-friendly VariDry Blue IR/hot-air dryer system.

    Both Rapida 106 presses offer 35 ink keys that support a variety of inks—including conventional, LED and UV inks, and include inline gloss, matte, spot varnish and UV varnish finishing options. But Dobrzynski notes that LED-UV drying technology on both presses truly enhances the overall workflow performance.

    “There are a number of benefits to using LED UV drying,” he says. ”There’s no heat or odor, and it allows for sustainable production practices by reducing energy consumption. It also gives us the ability for greater color fidelity and more gorgeous results all the while preventing against distortion. And its is better for the environment.”

    With a fine mix of different daily work, Crossmark’s employees are constantly challenged. Since the blend of jobs incorporates a range of broad substrates, Crossmark chose to have its new Rapida 106 equipped with the lightweight, plastic, and board packages. One of its most popular areas is lenticular, in which the firm uses a very fine 150 lpi lens. No other presses in the market produce the quality that these Koenig & Bauer presses do with this most challenging volume of work variety.

    The backbone at Crossmark Graphics, emphasizes Dobrzynski, is its employees. “Throughout our entire workforce, our employees are easy to deal with, care about our customers’ needs, stand behind their work, and believe in fostering strong customer relationships. It’s a tremendous team effort. ”

    It’s that team, especially those in the pressroom, that was highly anticipating the arrival of its second Rapida 106 on its pressroom floor. Dobrzynski rests assured that investing with Koenig & Bauer will provide a new press that is reliable and productive, helping its clients produce exceptional print material using the latest innovations, and will solve Crossmark’s capacity situation.

    Steve Korn, Director of National and Key Accounts for Koenig & Bauer, also commented, "We applaud Crossmark Graphics on its second Koenig & Bauer capital equipment investment in as many years.  Featuring our step-change printing and drying technology this capital investment will pay dividends for many years to come by providing Crossmark Graphics with an even more significant competitive edge in their marketplace. The 41.73-inch wide and 29.13 inches around Rapida 106 press, known industry-wide as the 'Makeready Champion' will enable Crossmark Graphics to provide the highest quality offset printing and immediate drying with ease, and now with two like kind presses provide the headroom to capture even more new clients. Accompanied by a high-level Koenig & Bauer technology kit, this second new press will once again prove to be a keystone for even more growth for the second generation owners at Crossmark Graphics. Koenig & Bauer is genuinely excited to partner with Crossmark Graphics once again as they are so customer centric, run such a great business, and above all else are such wonderful people."

    Founded in 1987 by James Dobrzynski Sr., Crossmark Graphics is led today by daughter Tammy Rechner, president and CEO, assisted by sons Jay, vice president of operations; Mark, vice president of sales; and Brian, production manager. Since its founding the 60-employee company has grown to include customers across the U.S. with an emphasis on pharmaceutical and retail work. It offers a full spectrum of services from pre-press and printing, through mailing and fulfillment. In its quest to provide its customers with continuing high quality and consistency in printed products and services, the firm has achieved qualification as a G7 Master printer. The G7 process utilizes existing ISO 12647 Standards as the basis for quality printing. This process makes it possible to achieve a proof to press as well as a press-to-press match with a greater degree of consistency and predictability than ever before.

    news-1111 Thu, 23 Aug 2018 10:20:00 +0200 Koenig & Bauer Rapida LiveApp Is Selected For The Prestigious 2018 InterTech Technology Award https://us.koenig-bauer.com/news/details/article/rapida-liveapp-mit-dem-renommierten-intertech-technology-award-2018-ausgezeichnet/
  • Offers control of press operations and critical press information right at a press operators’ fingertips on easy-to-carry mobile smartphone devices
  • Integrates video content to help an operator interactively learn and also implement important machine processes such as blanket changing or roller adjustment.
  • Incorporates both a maintenance manager and functions for inventory management.  
  • The Rapida LiveApp will be honored at this year’s InterTech Technology Awards on September 30 at PRINT 18 in Chicago (1)

    Koenig & Bauer (US) is honored to learn that its Rapida LiveApp has been selected by an independent panel of judges for the prestigious Printing Industries of America (PIA) 2018 InterTech Technology Award. The Rapida LiveApp, the first of its kind in the industry, was one of twelve of the 29 entries to be chosen to receive an InterTech Technology Award. It was deemed by the judges as meeting the award criteria of being truly innovative and expected to have a major impact on the graphic communications industry. The InterTech Technology Award will be presented before an audience of industry leaders during the 2018 Premier Print Awards and InterTech Technology Awards Reception & Ceremony, Sept. 30 at the J.W. Marriott in Chicago during the Print 18 trade fair.

    “The Rapida LiveApp shows the power of apps to add value in the pressroom,” said Jim Workman, vice president of PIA’s Center for Technology and Research. “The judges found the entire app innovative, especially noting its ability to track and communicate maintenance issues and provide easy access to training resources.”

    The Rapida LiveApp demonstrates how Koenig & Bauer Sheetfed embodies its corporate vision of setting industry standards in terms of customer focus, innovative solutions, and proactive services. The app provides printers with state-of-the-art tools for a wide range of sheetfed offset applications.

    Comprehensive range of functionalities

    The Rapida LiveApp offers dual functionality. On the one hand, press operators can start or stop their Rapida sheetfed offset press from a mobile location, adjust settings and perform operational tasks as well as obtain information on press status and print jobs. The maintenance manager displays a list of pending maintenance tasks and simplifies these tasks by providing relevant instructions and videos. Successful maintenance can be confirmed and commented upon interactively.

    On the other hand, the app includes a powerful tool for warehouse management and control, including batch recording and tracking. Inks, coatings and printing aids used can also be clearly assigned to the respective print jobs. Ordering processes are automatically triggered when minimum quantities are not met.

    “We are honored to be chosen for this prestigious award from PIA,” says Thomas Göcke, head of marketing and CRM at Koenig & Bauer Sheetfed. “With the Rapida LiveApp we are the first in the graphic arts industry to offer our users a completely new experience when it comes to the operation of sheetfed offset presses. We are delighted that print users and independent institutions appreciate this so much. It is truly an innovative operating concept.”

    The Rapida LiveApp incorporates a modern operating philosophy into print and warehouse management (2)

    Eric Frank, senior vice president of marketing and product management at Koenig & Bauer (US) adds: “The special added value provided by the app lies in the mobile operation and the maintenance manager, which explains the necessary maintenance tasks step-by-step and documents these tasks at the same time.”

    Project manager Stefan Singer, head of electrical engineering at Koenig & Bauer in Radebeul, is impressed by the success of the product: “It fills my colleagues and I with pride that the app is so well received by the industry.”

    The Rapida LiveApp has also received several awards in Europe, including the German Design Award in the category "Excellent Communications Design - Apps" and the "automation award". The InterTech Technology Award is the first prize in recognition of this pioneering operating philosophy for sheetfed offset presses in the U.S., from the world's largest printing association.

    Since 1978, the InterTech™ Technology Awards have honored technologies predicted to shape the future of print and graphics communications. Past honorees have introduced entirely new products and services that have revolutionized ways of working and enabled printers to operate more efficiently. 

    Koenig & Bauer (US) is located in Dallas, Texas and a member of the Koenig & Bauer Group, which was established 200 years ago in Würzburg, Germany. Koenig & Bauer’s claim, “We’re on it.” gets to the heart of Koenig & Bauer’s values and competencies for all target groups. The group's product range is the broadest in the industry; its portfolio includes sheetfed offset presses in all format classes, post press die-cutters, inkjet presses and systems, flexographic presses, commercial and newspaper web presses, corrugated presses, special presses for banknotes, securities, metal-decorating, smart cards, glass and plastic decorating. For more information visit the company's web site at www.koenig-bauer.com.

    news-1113 Tue, 21 Aug 2018 10:46:14 +0200 Lollicup USA Inks Contract for Newest Generation Koenig & Bauer Flexotecnica Evo XG Press https://us.koenig-bauer.com/news/details/article/lollicup-usa-inks-contract-for-newest-generation-koenig-bauer-flexotecnica-evo-xg-press/
  • Additional automation, efficiency, quicker makeready, and higher quality will be gained with new Koenig & Bauer Flexotecnica
  • Huge investment to on-shore all of its flexo production and increase print production by 60%
  • Press is designated for the firm’s new 660,000 sq ft manufacturing facility in Rockwall, TX
  • Responding to a surge in the food container market, especially for eco-friendly products, and guided by its skillful leadership team of CEO Alan Yu and CFO Marvin Cheng, Lollicup USA, Inc., a fast-growing premier beverage and disposable goods supplier and manufacturer for the food service industry, has chosen to support its growth by inking a contract for the newest generation Koenig & Bauer Flexotecnica Evo XG press. This elite manufacturer has quickly expanded to encompass five locations including its current headquarters in Chino, CA, and its new 660,000 sq ft production and manufacturing plant in Rockwall, TX, which is currently being built outside of Dallas. It is this new facility that will operate the new Koenig & Bauer Flexotecnica Evo XG press.

    “Our customer base here in the U.S. has quickly expanded in the past five years and we’re seeing special attention on orders for eco-friendly products,” says Alan Yu, CEO of Lollicup USA. “Since I have experience seeing the industry from different vantage points, it allows me to easily solve customer challenges. I like to personally work with customers on a daily basis and use my knowledge to help them grow and succeed in this competitive market.”

    Left to right: The leadership team of CFO Marvin Cheng and CEO Alan Yu of Lollicup USA, Inc., a fast-growing premier beverage and disposable goods supplier and manufacturer for the food service industry, has chosen to support its growth by inking a contract for the newest generation Koenig & Bauer-Flexotecnica Evo XG press, which will be installed in early 2019 at its new 660,000 sq ft production and manufacturing plant in Rockwall, TX.

    Having forged a deep trustworthy relationship with its customers, Lollicup USA has seen its growth soar. In fact, it has been on Inc. magazine’s 5000’s fastest growing companies list for the past five years in a row. To remain committed to its customers, Lollicup USA is seeking the finest equipment and technology to serve its needs.

    “We’re definitely working on purchasing the best new technology to help better serve our customers,” says Marvin Cheng, Lollicup’s CFO. “We want to stay ahead of market trends while quickly and efficiently serving our customers with better shipping and more manufacturing. This means finding new forms of innovative technology to help us with this demand. Our market is requiring changes to our printing services, asking up to be more accessible and, from our perspective, we need equipment that provides high quality, efficiency, fast turnaround, and is easy to maintain.”

    It was that endeavor that led Lollicup management to decide to purchase its first in-house flexo press. After researching the available models in the market, management chose the newest generation Koenig & Bauer -Flexotecnica Evo XG press for its new Rockwall, TX facility. Developed for increased printing widths and higher printing speeds, the sleeve gearless Evo XG press provides greater efficiency and productivity.

    “We had been thinking about purchasing our own printing press for a long period of time,” says Jason Lee, Lollicup USA’s assistant plant manager. “We decided to move forward when we started building our new plant in Texas. We chose Koenig & Bauer-Flexotecnica due to its superb printing capabilities, which will provide our customers with the quality and turnaround that they demand. We also believe that it will be a great addition to help us fill custom print orders. We forecast a 60% increase in our printing capabilities. We were quite impressed with the service and support that we received from Koenig & Bauer Flexotecnica and we’re pleased that its headquarters is local to our new plant.”

    The new Koenig & Bauer Flexotecnica Evo XG is equipped with numerous automated features that will improve efficiency and greatly reduce makeready times at Lollicup’s Rockwall facility. With the extraordinary demand of orders being placed, Lollicup feels that the Evo XG will reduce turnaround time printing its paper cups. The Evo XG is built with many important engineering and design details, such as its heavy construction cast-iron closed-design frames to the high-precision solid print deck featuring anti-vibration mechanical elements, which will provide Lollicup with an extremely robust press with outstanding flexibility well suited to printing at high speeds on various substrates. This prestigious model is designed to be user friendly with the highest level of automation. It will be ideal for Lollicup’s short, medium and long runs by reducing job changeover times while effectively minimizing down time and waste. In turn Lollicup will see increases in operation uptime and printing profitability.

    “This will be the key workhorse for our facility producing paper cups,” says Lee. “It gives us the ability to have in-house printing of our paper cups. In addition, we plan to run new specialty substrates in the future and expand our printing capabilities to the packaging board market.”

    Currently, Lollicup is seeing a trend in eco-friendly products, specifically straws. Multiple cities across the United States are starting to ban plastic straws. So the firm decided to offer eco-friendly straws to help customers avoid these bans. The firm has also noticed that there has been a large demand for straws, which its production team is challenged to keep up with, so its team has developed two new lids that don’t require straws. This new product allows customers to easily comply with these bans and move towards a more eco-friendlier route.

    Lollicup USA continues to innovate and grow, especially with many positive changes throughout 2018. The firm has launched 83 new products this year to keep up with market needs and customer requests. It has opened a new warehouse in New Jersey to better serve the East Coast quickly and efficiently.

    “One of the biggest decisions we made was to manufacture in the U.S.,” says Yu. “This decision has allowed us to grow our product line. More importantly, it has allowed us to quality check our products with our quality control team. That has positively impacted our company. We’re proud of the investment of an estimated $50 million in the new plant, which is scheduled for completion in October 2018. It will employ approximately 200 new employees once it opens. This new facility will allow the company to better service the region, while also making it possible for Lollicup to surpass its annual sales goals and production capacity. We project that we’ll post $180 million in sales by the end of this year, which displays growth over the previous year.”

    Lollicup USA manufactures and distributes Karat paper and plastic disposable foodservice packaging products. It also supplies Tea Zone beverage products for thousands of retail business accounts, including several Fortune 500 restaurant franchises. Lollicup USA has proudly manufactured in the United States since 2014. Please visit LollicupUsa.com for more information, or contact us at marketing(at)lollicup.com.

    Koenig & Bauer (US) is located in Dallas, Texas and a member of the Koenig & Bauer Group, which was established 200 years ago in Würzburg, Germany. Koenig & Bauer’s claim, “We’re on it.” gets to the heart of Koenig & Bauer’s values and competencies for all target groups. The group's product range is the broadest in the industry; its portfolio includes sheetfed offset presses in all format classes, post press die-cutters, inkjet presses and systems, flexographic presses, commercial and newspaper web presses, corrugated presses, special presses for banknotes, securities, metal-decorating, smart cards, glass and plastic decorating. For more information visit the company's web site at www.koenig-bauer.com.

    news-1106 Mon, 20 Aug 2018 06:42:00 +0200 New Koenig & Bauer Rapida 105 PRO 41-Inch Six Color Press Arrives This Fall at Wausau Container Corporation https://us.koenig-bauer.com/news/details/article/new-koenig-bauer-rapida-105-pro-41-inch-seven-color-press-arrives-this-fall-at-wausau-container-corporation/
    • Better print quality and greater throughput are reasons to invest in Rapida 105 PRO
    • Chose Koenig & Bauer for its long, leading, established relationship with packaging market
    • Celebrating 25 years in Wausau, WI  

    Ever since it was established 25 years ago as a paperboard packaging specialist, Wausau Container Corporation has found tremendous growth opportunities by being nimble and flexible, able to establish its dominance in a short-run niche that others didn't embrace, and continuing to invest in innovative printing technology. Over the past four years, the Wisconsin-based premium folding carton manufacturer has flexed its muscles by expanding its facility by 30,000 sq ft to 100,000 sq ft and adding a 28-inch 10-color flexo press/cutter line, a six-color waterless digital offset press, and additional automation in its finishing department with two auto packers and a folder/gluer. But its most highly anticipated new piece of machinery arrives in the fall: a new fully automated Koenig & Bauer Rapida 105 PRO six color sheetfed press, its first from the leading press manufacturer and Wausau's first 41-inch sheetfed press.

    The firm, led by Chuck Plier, plans to harness the power and automation of its new Rapida 105 PRO to solve the challenges brought on by market trends, such as shorter run lengths, higher quality requirements; and competitive pricing.

    Left to right: Jeff Plier, Wausau’s vice president of sales and marketing, and Chuck Plier, Wausau’s president

    "We chose the Rapida 105 PRO over its competitors to provide us with greater throughput, better print quality, and a larger format (31.72" x 41.34") than we have at present,” says Plier. "We were thrilled that Koenig & Bauer could build this special size for us. It is a special larger maximum sheet size and larger maximum image size than is normal for a standard Rapida 105 PRO press-a Koenig & Bauer exclusive. Another important consideration was the ability by the new press to provide precise press documentation to support our customers. The automation on the Rapida 105 PRO distinguishes itself with its inline inspection system by capturing each and every sheet, even while running at top speeds, to ensure that the job matches what the customer has sent to us. It provides us with a high level of reporting for credibility that we can share with our clients."

    "We congratulate Wausau Container on its first Koenig & Bauer press investment and are appreciative of the strong partnership that we've quickly forged," says Steve Korn, Koenig & Bauer Director of National and Key Accounts. "We applaud Wausau's extraordinary growth and its customer-focused approach. It's clear that's why an avalanche of additional business is coming its way. We are confident that its new Koenig & Bauer press will increase Wausau Container's capacity and help continue Wausau's high quality production and on-time leadership position with its existing and future clients for many years to come." 

    Currently, Wausau Container offers a mix of 90% flexo and 10% offset. Plier's goal, he says, is to reduce the flexo output to 60% and increase the offset production to 40%. Its corporate office headquartered in Wisconsin borders three states that has driven the firm to domination within the food industry, noting that 60% of its work comes from that market segment followed closely by beverage and supplements. Its clients include small entrepreneurs, regional manufacturers, and national and internationally recognized corporations.

    "We seized the opportunity to offer vibrant, shiny, eye-catching colorful packaging," says Plier. "Our containers help our customers to sell their products. There's no need to build complicated combinations of multiple items. In today's fast changing marketplace, our customers want to order what they want when they want it. To remain competitive, they have to quickly adjust to changing product demand. We've partnered with our customers giving them the ability to bring on new customers rapidly, shorten their lead times that eliminates long range forecasting, and reduce their inventory and reduce exposure to copy obsolescence"

    Catering to customers with short run lengths and exact color and design requirements, Wausau chose to equip its new press with the popular QualiTronic ColorControl inline color control. With this system on board, Wausau's operators can be on autopilot regarding measurement and control directly on the Rapida 105 PRO.

    “This press has all the bells and whistles available," says Plier. "Of course, we're anticipating the need for this high level of automation to produce high quality jobs for our customers. But we also felt that the automation lends itself to new, lesser experienced operators who are part of the millennial generation that are technically proficient with computers."

    Wausau feels that the new Koenig & Bauer Rapida 105 PRO will be a welcome addition to its pressroom. After careful consideration, management felt that the Koenig & Bauer press was absolutely the best press suited to the paperboard world than other competitive offerings. The consensus was that the new press would fit well in its workflow and the larger sheet will better fit its larger volume items.

    "The culture of our company and manufacturing process is specifically geared toward meeting a wide range of needs," says Plier. "We're printing up to nine color plus coating in a single pass using aqueous, UV-cured, and tactile coatings. We convert SBS, SUS, and CRB. Mostly we print onto paperboard. Customers can request inside printing, embossing, blister coating, and a wide range of finishing options to include straight line gluing, auto-bottom, envelopes, and set-up trays. We have a dedicated department for CAD/CAM structural development and sample making, in which we can produce ultra-small quantity sales samples and market test orders. Our new Rapida 105 PRO will support our continued significant growth and win new job opportunities."

    Wausau Container Corporation specializes in the printing, die cutting, and finishing of custom paperboard packaging. It has been producing paperboard packaging for a wide range of goods since 1993. The Wisconsin-based firm helped to pioneer the application of flexographic printing to the manufacture of high-quality consumer oriented folding cartons. Its efforts to seek out and employ the latest in technological innovations continue. Starting with one press, one gluer, and one customer in what seemed a spacious 14,000 square foot building, the firm soon ran out of room and capacity. It has since expanded its facility on repeated occasions and made numerous investments in productive capacity. Today Wausau Container occupies nearly 100,000 square feet and operates multiple presses and supporting equipment. As critical as the application of technology is to the success of Wausau Container, its most important asset is the people of Wausau Container. They are involved and committed with a clear understanding of the essential importance of customer satisfaction.



    news-1095 Wed, 01 Aug 2018 06:58:00 +0200 Strong order intake of €454.4m in the second quarter https://us.koenig-bauer.com/news/details/article/starker-auftragseingang-von-4544-mio-EUR-im-zweiten-quartal/
  • 17.2% rise in orders in H1
  • Large orders in security printing and order gains in packaging printing
  • Greater accumulation of deliveries in H2 than in the previous year
  • EBIT below prior year due to delivery-related lower revenue
  • With a book-to-bill ratio of 1.37 order backlog grows to an extraordinarily high €805.8m
  • Good cash flows from operating activities of €17.4m
  • Equity ratio of 35.6%    
  • With order intake reaching a particularly high €454.4m in the second quarter and the order backlog rising to €805.8m at the end of the first half, the Koenig & Bauer Group is on track to meet its targets for 2018. Strong security business and more orders in packaging printing caused order intake to rise by 17.2% to €705.3m in the first half of 2018 (2017: €601.9m). Driven by the good Q2 figure of €297.1m, group revenue came to €514.4m but fell short of the previous year’s figure of €538.9m due to the even greater accumulation of delivery dates in the second half of the year. This was also reflected in EBIT, which at €10.6m was lower than in 2017 (€16.3m).

    Weltneuheit: Flachbettstanze Ipress 106 K PRO mit bewährtem Anleger der Rapida-Maschinen für den wachsenden Faltschachtelmarkt (1)

    Sheetfed expands market leadership in large-format

    The Sheetfed segment reached a strong order intake of €326.3m, exactly matching the previous year’s figure, which had been influenced by the Print China fair. President and CEO Claus Bolza-Schünemann: “Substantial growth was achieved in large-format cardboard printing. As the world market leader in folding carton printing, we are benefiting from heightened capital spending of the international packaging printers.” EBIT of €7.7m was below the previous year’s figure (€12.1m) due to the delivery-related decline in revenue from €307.8m in 2017 to €283m.

    Despite the encouraging growth in new business in flexible packaging, orders in Digital & Web (€84.7m) were slightly down on the previous year (€85.7m) due to fewer orders for newspaper web presses and services. In addition to the market-entry costs for corrugated and flexible packaging in particular, EBIT was significantly burdened by the decline in revenue from €68.3m to €55.8m. CFO Mathias Dähn: “This was materially due to the decline in revenue from digital printing presses as a result of subdued demand. However, we see significantly greater short and medium-term potential in the large corrugated and foil printing markets, which are expanding at above-average rates. The targeted expenses required for future growth will leave traces on our cost position, exerting pressure on segment earnings.”

    Driven by large orders in security printing and growth in marking and coding, order intake in the Special segment rose by 52.8% to €330.6m (2017: €216.3m). With revenue rising slightly from €189.2m to €195m, EBIT came to €14.4m, thus matching the previous year’s figure (€14.6m). President and CEO Claus Bolza-Schünemann: “With the major order received from Giesecke+Devrient for the delivery of several press lines for the production of ultra-secure banknotes in Egypt, we have a high degree of capacity utilisation in security printing until well into 2019.”

    Strong financial and balance sheet profile

    Cash flows from operating activities rose substantially over the previous year (€–20m) to €17.4m. The free cash flow was burdened by the final payment instalment of €34.8m made in Q1 for the external funding of a part of the pension provisions. In addition to net liquidity of €48.1m and securities of €14.6m that can be liquidated at any time, the group also has access to syndicated credit facilities. The equity ratio stood at 35.6% at the end of the first half of 2018.

    Nach anstehender Kundenabnahme Auslieferung der digitalen CorruJET-Bogenmaschine an bekannten Wellpappendrucker (2)

    Group targets for 2018

    In 2018, the management board expects to achieve organic growth of around 4% in group revenue and an EBIT margin of around 7%. With many projects still in the pipeline in all business fields, the forecast is based on the high order backlog of €805.8m as of the end of the first half year together with further progress being made in the group-wide service initiative and the cost-cutting projects in security printing, purchasing and production. These projects should cause earnings to rise by €70m over 2016 by 2021.

    CFO Mathias Dähn: “The achievement of the targets 2018 requires the execution of orders on time in the second half of the year and particularly in Q4 with the accumulation of press installations. Given the high capacity utilisation and external and internal delivery bottlenecks in parts, this is a challenging task to which we pay particular attention. However, we consider it to be particularly important to utilise the opportunities for growth being offered by the market in new press business in order to widen the installed base as the foundation for further growth in service business.”

    Medium-term goals until 2021

    Depending on global economy, end markets and the necessary investments in growth, management is targeting a group-wide organic revenue growth rate of around 4% p.a. and an EBIT margin of between 4% and 9% by 2021. Product innovations in corrugated printing and 2-piece can decorating are not included in the medium-term targets, neither revenue nor costs. President and CEO Claus Bolza-Schünemann: “In addition to our printing, finishing, coding and postpress solutions for cardboard, banknotes, cans, glass and hollow containers and other products, we are particularly focusing on corrugated board and flexible packaging. With the focus on the growing packaging printing, we want to boost our revenue and profitability as well as the stability of our business on a sustained basis.”      

    Figures at a glance 

    The financial statements can be downloaded as a PDF file from here


    news-1075 Tue, 10 Jul 2018 23:48:35 +0200 Battlefield Press Finds Superior Technology In New KBA-Iberica Optima 106 Die Cutter https://us.koenig-bauer.com/news/details/article/battlefield-press-finds-superior-technology-in-new-kba-iberica-optima-106-die-cutter/
  • Impressive factory and well-built die cutters with unique grip edge removal
  • Push button automation, top running speeds
  • Ability to die cut all types of substrates including clear plastic
  • Professional, knowledgeable sales team; well-trained support staff 
  • Ever since Battlefield Press was founded in 1964, this family-owned full-service modern print shop located in Burlington, Ontario, Canada has striven to be the best. Now in its third generation, Battlefield has separated itself from its North American competitors by applying its superior trade of craftsmanship with particular know-how especially using UV techniques. Central to its success, Battlefield’s management team has had to make hard decisions to better offer its customers top quality, fast turnaround, and competitive pricing. This incisive decision-making process was on full display when the firm had to replace a older die cutter from a different manufacturer with a new KBA-Iberica Optima 106 die cutter earlier this year.

    “Since we serve very high-end customers, it was very important to us to buy the best-made die cutter,” says Jerry Theoret, president of Battlefield. “For us, that meant it had to be European built. Due to our prior bad experience, we would not consider anything made in China, so that eliminated a lot of machines.”

    Left to right: Jerry Theoret, president and CEO of Battlefield; and Matt Theoret, Battlefield director of production; join Aleks Lajtman, Koenig & Bauer regional sales manager, at the new KBA-Iberica Optima 106 die cutter.

    Instead, Battlefield turned its discerning eye to KBA-Iberica’s brand of die-cutters. The firm learned that the Optima 106 machine is capable of handling production of paper, cardboard, plastic and corrugated boards up to 1.5mm, providing much needed flexibility to the firm’s varied jobs. It could also offer top running speeds for faster productivity and efficiency. Wanting to see where the die-cutters are manufactured, Battlefield’s management team traveled to the factory in Barcelona, Spain to see how the machines are built.

    “After our visit, we left the meeting very impressed,” says Theoret. “So much so that we signed an order three days later for a KBA-Iberica Optima 106 die cutter. We felt the sales team was very professional, knowledgeable, and responsive. From the moment we met them, they answered all of our questions immediately and were alert to our needs throughout the entire process.”

    In early May 2018, the 45,000 sq ft one-story facility outside of Toronto took possession of the new die-cutter. The installation, says Theoret, was performed very well and went smoothly. The KBA-Iberica training team came to Battlefield’s facility to teach the operators how to use the new die cutter. The Battlefield operators were so impressed and learned so much from them that they hope they will be able to visit again for some future training.

    “Although we’ve only had the die-cutter up and running jobs for less than a month, the early reviews from our team are that the machine is providing faster makereadies, runs much faster than our previous machines, and the sheets are much easier to strip,” says Theoret. “We’re thrilled with its operator friendly innovations and ease of handling. It’s been an important addition to our post-press department allowing us to keep all of our jobs inhouse and permitting us to die-cut from 29.5-inch up to 41.5-inch press sheets. Plus, it has performed magnificently for our customer’s demanding work.”

    Theoret adds that his company is looking forward to utilizing some of the special features on the KBA-Iberica machine, particularly, its unique grip edge removal and its die cutting of clear plastic substrates. Battlefield’s new Optima 106 is equipped with a grip edge removal system with pneumatic clamps that fixes the wooden templates for perfect and secure positioning and make-ready reduction time. With this unique system only found on KBA-Iberica models, effective removal of grip edge trim is achieved on each job.

    “A big part of our business is to produce very high quality work on diverse substrates, including clear plastic,” says Theoret. “We’re pleased that the Optima 106 features an anti-static kit for feeder head and table providing us with improved performance when die-cutting plastic materials. We didn’t have these features or operation on our previous die cutters.”

    As the 60-employee business looks to the future, it is well-positioned for increased growth and revenue. With the installment of the new KBA-Iberica die-cutter and other important equipment purchases, Theoret believes that the company can grow by 15-20% per year, with a goal of posting a 50% increase in revenue in the next three years. “The Optima 106 was the perfect investment for our company, providing us with high productivity and a rugged long-life piece of machinery,” says Theoret.

    Battlefield Press was founded in 1964 and was one of the first in Ontario to offer four-color printing. In the 1990s, the firm led by incorporating digital printing and workflow technology. It was also the only printer in Canada to offer 12-colour perfector printing in 2005. In 2016, it was the first Canadian printer to win Sappi's Printer of the Year Award. It has built its fine reputation by producing automotive, pharmaceutical, in-store POP, direct mail and product package printing. Battlefield prints catalogs, books, maps, decals, boxes, banners, signs and more using specialty coatings from matte and gloss UV (usually in a single pass) to clear foil deboss and it prints on everything from 40lb text to 40pt vinyl right off the roll.




    news-1063 Tue, 26 Jun 2018 22:30:26 +0200 Large Format Koenig & Bauer Rapida 164 Press Launches the Next Generation for Accurate Box https://us.koenig-bauer.com/news/details/article/large-format-koenig-bauer-rapida-164-press-launches-the-next-generation-for-accurate-box/
  • Certified woman owned business serving nationally-recognized brands
  • Fulfilling additional press capacity with ever expanding customer base
  • E-commerce growth propels need for high graphic packaging 
  • One of the key reasons that New Jersey-based Accurate Box has remained extremely successful over its 74 years is investment: in its employee base, in its equipment, and in its customer’s ongoing needs. With a stellar reputation for providing exceptional high quality graphics for corrugated packaging for nationally-recognized brands such as Kellogg's and Pepsico that line the aisles of big box retailers like Costco and Sam's Club, this third-generation, woman owned business consistently seeks the best and brightest local employees, the most automated and technically-advanced equipment, and keeps its fingers on the pulse of the fast-moving trends in its niche of the market.

    Founded in 1944 by Henry Hirsh, Accurate Box has remained in northern New Jersey, first in Newark and for the past 35 years in Paterson, NJ. Its 400,000 sq ft headquarters sits in an industrial area of the city and draws its 270 employees from the nearby community. Henry’s son Charlie led the company from the 1960s until 1997, guiding the company through tremendous growth as a folding carton manufacturer specializing in large format packaging. When his daughter, Lisa Hirsh, joined the family business and officially took over in 1997, she maintained that tradition of reinvesting in the company’s future. Since then, she has built on the solid foundation laid by her father and grandfather, modernizing and expanding its capacity, and building it into one of the largest independent box manufacturers of litho-laminated packaging in the U.S. 

    At the end of June, Lisa Hirsh, president and CEO of Accurate Box, will be adding to her firm’s pressroom firepower with a new Koenig & Bauer Rapida 164 seven-color press, which will enable the firm to continue to create high quality packaging for the club store, e-commerce, and quick service food industries.

    “We continue to deepen our relationship with our customers,” says Lisa Hirsh, president and CEO of Accurate Box. “Our goal is to help them stand out—whether it be on store shelves or as an e-commerce delivery, not blend in. Our team is constantly collaborating with our customers’ product management and graphics teams to find new ways to enhance their packages and increase wholesale club store sales or direct to consumer sales revenue. We want the graphics to entice customers to purchase the products. To achieve those results, we are always seeking to leverage the innovations and advanced technologies available to our market.” 

    At the end of June, Accurate will be adding to its pressroom firepower with a new Koenig & Bauer Rapida 164 seven-color press. The newly designed blue and gray model will operate 24/7 alongside the firm’s two existing Koenig & Bauer Rapida 162 64-inch seven-color sheetfed printing presses, providing Accurate with even more press capacity, faster speeds, improved set-up, new computerized quality systems and enhancements. An additional key feature of this fast large-format Rapida is a logistics system for the feeder.  

    Working with major brands and their specific color schemes, logos, and graphics, it is imperative for Accurate to match those shades and images box-to-box and run-to-run. Aiding in this endeavor is the combination of Koenig & Bauer inline QualiTronic Color Control capability and System Brunner Instrument Flight print quality measuring system on the new Rapida 164. Having earned a reputation as the leading inline color control system on the market, the Koenig & Bauer QualiTronic Instrument Flight emphasizes color balance and gray balance, taking into account more than 30 process variables. This will allow Accurate to produce the highest quality images on strong corrugated material that will withstand shipping, storage, and display. 

    “Our reputation has always been as a world class manufacturer that produces high graphic corrugated boxes,” says Hirsh. “As the marketplace continues to rapidly transform, our strategy is to fully embrace the e-commerce sector. Marketers who focus on online consumers are searching for other ways to create a different type of branded consumer experience. High graphic, corrugated packaging offered through our company has often filled this void through its process of creating unique packaging for online consumers strategically branded on the inside. As the e-commerce market grows, the ‘unboxing’ experience is increasingly more important to online consumers.” 

    As its customers continue to require high quality brilliant graphics, Accurate decided to equip its new press with LED-UV technology, providing the firm with greater color fidelity and even more stunning results. The added benefit of the LED-UV technology is its ability to speed job cycle times and deliver a bindery-ready sheet to Accurate’s post-press department. Having the press specified with the high-speed package will provide Accurate’s press operators a major increase in productivity. 

    While the management team at Accurate Box did look at other competing press manufacturers, their decision to purchase a new Koenig & Bauer press rested on a number of issues. “We determined that Koenig & Bauer brings exceptional value to its customers,” says Hirsh. “There are a lot of fine presses on the market but Koenig & Bauer delivered on the capabilities that we needed. Plus, our on-going relationship with KBA North America and our sales manager Ed Heffernan was definitely an important factor. In the end, we were quite comfortable with our decision. Koenig & Bauer produces exceptional presses.”

    About Accurate Box Company Inc.  

    Accurate Box Company is one of the largest, family owned manufacturers of high graphic corrugated packaging in the United States. We specialize in offset lithography and have the ability to print 7 colors plus UV coating in a single pass on both small and large runs. We are experts in creating high quality packaging for the club store, e-commerce, and quick service food industries. Our facility is food safety certified and is equipped with state-of-the-art machinery in every department. In business since 1944, and women owned since 1998, Accurate Box manufactures in New Jersey and ships competitively throughout all of North America. Visit www.accuratebox.com to find out more about our capabilities and services.



    news-1024 Tue, 05 Jun 2018 23:12:00 +0200 New KBA-Iberica Optima 106 Die Cutter Significantly Boosts Capacity At Lithographic Industries https://us.koenig-bauer.com/news/details/article/new-kba-iberica-optima-106-die-cutter-significantly-boosts-capacity-at-lithographic-industries/
  • Blister packaging market is growing and expanding
  • Calls KBA-Iberica Optima 106 “best in class” piece of equipment
  • Die cutter offers quick makeready, smooth operation, and substantial waste reduction
  • With an expanding market and the “best business in years,” Lithographic Industries, a privately-owned, third generation packaging printer located in Broadview, IL, chose to invest in its business by adding a new KBA-Iberica Optima 106 die cutter after thoroughly investigating what was competitively offered in the marketplace. The firm, which is known for its high-quality blister card printing in combination gang runs, has always remained a bit under the radar in its one-story facility on a quiet street in this suburb of Chicago. But its customers have long recognized the firm’s fine heritage as the oldest combination blister card manufacturer in the U.S. since 1961, its superb quality, and its service-oriented philosophy.

    For nearly six months, the KBA-Iberica Optima 106 has proven its ruggedness, efficiency, and high speed as an integral part of the firm’s production, providing Lithographic Industries with a competitive edge as the demand for blister packs has posted a sharp rise. It is paired with the firm’s unique 11-color Koenig & Bauer Rapida 41-inch sheetfed offset press, the only one of its type in the U.S., offering two sided printing for nine-over-two combination blister card and insert card printing.

    “We produce unique solutions for our customers and we depend on equipment that is operating smoothly and efficiently with minimal downtime,” says Louis A Ebert, president of Lithographic Industries. “The superior technology from KBA-Iberica on the Optima 106 die cutter has significantly increased our throughput and led to enhanced client satisfaction. This new die cutter has completely eliminated variability right from the start. It registers the sheet perfectly. Additionally, it reduced waste and increased our productivity, which is especially important as the need for more capacity has grown.”

    “We applaud Lou Ebert and his entire team at Lithographic Industries for investing in this ‘step-change technology’ at its Chicagoland location,” says Steve Korn, KBA North America director of national and key accounts. “This capital investment offers a very quick payback schedule of under two years and has already enabled Lithographic Industries to reach the first step of its business growth goals in the blister packaging market space.  It will, quite simply, provide a competitive edge in this unique market for many years to come. On a personal note, it is with great pride and pleasure to once again be trusted with an order from Lithographic Industries. They are outstanding people running a top-notch operation.”

    Left to right: The team at Lithographic Industries celebrates its new KBA-Iberica Optima 106 die cutter: Louis Ebert Jr, Vice President Sales; Roman Ebert, Vice President Manufacturing; Louis A Ebert Sr, President & CEO; and Lalo Abarca, Die Cutting Operator.

    One of the key features of the KBA-Iberica Optima 106 flatbed die cutter, according to Ebert, is its grip edge removal system. His operators have found that its pneumatic clamps fix the wooden templates for perfect and secure positioning and reduce makeready time. Having this new system in place at Lithographic Industries allows the operation to effectively remove the gripper edge trim fully automatically so there are less downstream steps on each job, which saves approximately 25% in time and related labor expenses.

    With capacity increasing and the growing need to more efficiently run jobs through the die cutter, Ebert has found that the Optima 106 is ruggedly built and matches his Koenig & Bauer 41” press and provides 6% in additional square inches on each sheet cut. This results in a productivity bonus in relationship to the previous die cutter from a different manufacturer that was replaced. This extra room allows the firm to be able to produce larger combos to help maximize its sheet size.

    “The KBA-Iberica Optima 106 die cutter is our workhorse,” says Ebert. “We’re running it day in and day out at 8,000 sheets per hour. Due to its increased automation and technology, we’re finding that our sheets are running through the die cutter very smoothly, without the jerky motion of our previous die cutter. As a result we need significantly fewer nicks, which also saves time and we’ve seen an increase in improved quality due to the Optima 106. Plus there’s been no downtime because the machine is so dependable. It is a real time-saver for our operators and our company, and let’s face it, time is money.”

    Lithographic Industries has long held a deep partnership with KBA North America, especially noting its decades-long relationship with Steve Korn. Ebert was also impressed with Tom Fitzgerald, KBA North America’s product manager of post-press products, who provided his own expertise and tips to using the new machine and has become a trusted resource.

    “Like our Rapida 105 press, which I feel is far superior to any other press model on the market, our new Optima 106 die cutter is designed and built by KBA-Iberica to be very industrial, precise, and of course very well-engineered and gives us more production, an increase in throughput, and a very high level of quality and consistency that can’t be matched,” says Ebert. “It will deliver higher returns for our company and we’ve calculated an extremely fast payback on our investment. We replaced a die cutter from a different manufacturer and are delighted with our decision. Koenig & Bauer is a first-class company to do business with and you can trust their people to deliver on any promise made.”

    Lithographic Industries, Inc. prints blister cards and skin packaging used for marketing merchandise. The company offers carded packaging products and services such as folding and gluing, foil stamping, off-line heat seal coating, and custom printing services. It was established in 1961 by brothers Louis and Roman A. Ebert, Jr., and dedicated to the premise of providing the highest possible quality at the lowest possible price. Located in Broadview Illinois, Lithographic invented the concept of producing many different blister cards on the same sheet. This concept was called combination gang runs or "combos" for short.



    news-1019 Mon, 21 May 2018 23:21:10 +0200 Commercial Printer Brown Printing Sees Incredible Growth After Koenig & Bauer Rapida 106 Installation https://us.koenig-bauer.com/news/details/article/commercial-printer-brown-printing-sees-incredible-growth-after-koenig-bauer-rapida-106-installation/
  • Makeready reduced by 50% and production run time reduced by 35%
  • Replaced existing sheetfed press with firm’s first-ever new Rapida 106 41-inch
  • Loyal customers cite quality, expert service, and family-owned values 
  • How does a commercial printer with nearly 80 years of experience plan for success in a fast-changing industry? In the case of Brown Printing, a Portland, OR, family-owned business, it is creating a truly differentiated experience for its customers with the help of a new fully automated Rapida 106 41-inch six-color UV press. The firm decided to purchase its new press to maximize the advanced technologies and unique innovations from Koenig & Bauer selected specifically by its executive team to continue its growth into the next generation of ownership.

     “We have developed a reputation for giving our clients personalized attention, professional knowledge, competitive pricing and timeliness,” says Randy Murray, Brown’s vice president. “Using environmentally-friendly practices, our goal is to provide our customers with a quality print job, no matter how large or complex. When a newly-installed existing 40-inch sheetfed press was not performing as promised, my team and I began to seek out a new press manufacturer that could deliver exactly the technology and automation needed to provide our level of quality to our customers. In a decisive move, we removed the existing press and replaced it with the new Rapida 106 press. Since its installation five months ago, we’ve reduced our production run time by 35%, found that we have less preplanning for each job, and most surprising, we’ve reduced our makeready times by 50% and even more on difficult runs. The print quality is excellent and we’re just getting started.”

    Left to right: The team at Brown Printing: Peter Ochs, Brown’s lead pressman; Shawn Irish, pressroom manager; Randy Murray, vice president; and Don Murray, president/owner; are finding that their new Koenig & Bauer Rapida 106 press is producing more work more efficiently than ever before.

    Murray was also pleased with the fast start-up of the new Rapida 106 allowing his firm to bring in new unexpected business. For example, Brown has just finished a large push of catalogs that it would not have had the capability to complete without the new Rapida 106. By equipping the new press with full UV technology, Brown has been able to win new work for jobs such as specialty coating and packaging. 

    “Our goal is to keep ahead of our competition,” says Murray. “Now that we have full UV printing and coating, high speed output, and color control with our new Rapida 106, we are able to differentiate ourselves in our market. We’re seeing rapid growth because we have the ability to turn projects fast at the highest quality.” 

    Since its start as a family-run business in the early 20th century, Brown has evolved into a solid full-service commercial printer with offset and digital press options. Over the last eight decades, the company has built its reputation on being a first-adopter of new technology. “Ten years ago, we were a 20-inch two-color shop; our decision to move into a 40-inch press with UV as well as adding digital printing capabilities has made a huge positive impact for us,” says Murray. “We’re going to continue to invest in new technology. It allows us to be more competitive and produce higher quality work.” 

    Quality is one of the key mainstays of Brown’s success. Its customers note that Brown’s print output is exceptional and unmatched by any other printer. It was important to Murray to include the Koenig & Bauer’s QualiTronic ColorControl inline color measuring system on its new Rapida 106 to maintain its color expertise and enhanced color accuracy for its customers. This unique system uses an inter-deck camera system integrated directly into the press. The control strips can be positioned either at the front or in the center of the sheet. This ensures that printing jobs maintain color integrity on all customer work and provide limitless printing applications. 

    “We are extremely impressed with the expert method that Koenig & Bauer builds its presses,” says Murray. “Our Rapida 106 is a strong, well built machine equipped with unique automation that allows us to produce more work more efficiently than ever before. We needed a new press that could accommodate our continued fast growth. The advanced technology on the Rapida 106 increases our company’s output capacity and has immediately delivered efficiency and cost savings. It’s no wonder that it has gained a reputation as the makeready and production output world champion in medium format.” 

    Its healthy mix of high-end commercial customers from the Pacific Northwest are drawn to the firm’s personable approach and convenient location near the famous Rose Garden in downtown Portland. Customer service is one of its strong distinctions amid the current competitive landscape as well as its specialty equipment and services that help clients with projects that require letterpress, foil stamping, embossing and its ability to offer custom ink mixes. The firm maximizes the value and beauty of each of its perfectly printed products with a variety of finishing techniques such as die-cutting, folding, gluing, and kiss cutting. 

    With a strong anchor in the commercial printing market, Brown has begun to diversify its services by adding packaging to its repertory. To accommodate a variety of run lengths, Brown is utilizing the state-of-the-art automation modules, such as the DriveTronic SIS sidelay-free infeed, on the Rapida 106 to quickly complete job changeovers and shorter production deadlines.  The fast run speeds of the Rapida 106 equate to less time on-press as well as shorter delivery times. Since its installation, the press has performed at optimum conditions and become Brown’s “go-to” press. 

    Brown Printing is a family-owned commercial printing company providing a complete range of services for clients large and small. The Portland, OR business offers a full range of services—from simple one-color jobs to six-color inline printing with in-house foil stamp and die-cut. For nearly 80 years, it has gained a reputation for giving its clients personalized attention, professional knowledge, competitive pricing and timeliness. Using environmentally friendly practices, its goal is to provide its customers with a quality print job, no matter how large or complex. 



    news-1018 Wed, 09 May 2018 22:56:36 +0200 Southern Champion Tray Maintains Strong Partnership With Koenig & Bauer As It Pushes ‘Start’ On Its New Rapida 106 Seven Color Press https://us.koenig-bauer.com/news/details/article/southern-champion-tray-maintains-strong-partnership-with-koenig-bauer-as-it-pushes-start-on-its-new-rapida-106-seven-color-press/ ·        New Rapida 106 41-inch press provides footprint to support continued growth

    ·        Expecting a 20% overall improvement in OEE on this new machine

    ·        Retail-based packaging customers require shelf appeal with bold graphics

    As one of the most important market players in the global food service and custom packaging segments, Southern Champion Tray, headquartered in Chattanooga, Tennessee, relishes its status as a dominant force in the production and distribution of paperboard packaging products for the bakery, food service and custom retail markets. One of its most important divisions sits further south in Mansfield, TX, part of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. This 90 year old, third generation packaging printer with approximately 700 employees throughout its entire company, has been making significant investments at its 120-employee Mansfield site. In the past 24 months it has increased the facility with an additional 25,000 sq ft and completed an office renovation. New equipment, such as a paperboard sheeter, die cutter, LED-UV curing to lift the level of its graphics, scrap reclamation system, and digital printing systems, has been added. Why the infusion of capital? The investments align with the growing Dallas/Fort Worth market and more importantly, is a vote of confidence toward the firm’s highly devoted and talented staff based in the Mansfield operation. Plus, the Mansfield plant supplies cartons to multiple states in the Southwest region of the U.S., and even transfers product to the Chattanooga, Tennesse area for national distribution. 

    With the foodservice packaging market growing at a very rapid pace, management saw fit to add another key piece of equipment. Its pressroom has recently seen the installation of a new towering iconic blue Koenig & Bauer Rapida 106 41-inch seven-color press. This new multi-million dollar investment is being located next to another Rapida 106 seven-color press that was installed several years ago.

    (Far left) Rich Dreshfield, KBA North America senior vice president of sheetfed sales; and Scott Brown, KBA North America regional sales manager (far right); join SCT Mansfield employees Deven Dye, production manager (second from left); Robi Siklosi, manager of print and digital technology (third from left); and John Moreno, pressroom manager (second from right); to celebrate the installation of the new Koenig & Bauer Rapida 106 seven color press.

    “Our Mansfield operation is a fast-paced manufacturing environment that has to address all of the evolving trends in our market,” says Brian Hunt, SCT’s COO. “Our customers are demanding higher-end graphics, shorter run quantities, and faster turnaround. We’ve solved these demands by ensuring that our new Rapida 106 is running at its maximum press capabilities to print our cartons and improving make-ready speeds---all of which are game changers. The new Koenig & Bauer ColorTronic ink control system has made a big difference in reducing our make-ready times. Our new digital printing system is a great solution for small volume items and matches well with the capabilities of our Rapida 106.  We are quite confident that we can handle all of the demands requested by our customers in the area of folding cartons.”

    While SCT has dominated the food paperboard packaging market, it is seeing fast growth in many other end-use segments including nutraceuticals and pet pharmaceuticals. Consumers are also increasingly shopping for organics and supplements. To set themselves apart on the store shelf, manufacturers are turning to bold colorful graphics to entice the consumer’s eye. For example, says SCT, it is running strike-thru varnish to increase impact at the retail shelf. To respond to the ever changing needs of the retail consumer, manufacturers are asking SCT for shorter run lengths and quicker turnaround.. SCT has also broadened its capabilities to further expand  warehousing of its customer’s packaging.

    The new press brings a host of new automated features that add speed and efficiency to SCT’s output, according to John Simpson, SCT’s general manager of the Mansfield facility. The Rapida 106’s color management system is adding value in consistency and getting up to color much faster, he says. Sheet delivery is also much improved allowing for higher machine speeds. Pressmen are impressed with its operator consoles allowing them to be much more efficient and effective.

    “We expect a 20% overall improvement in OEE (overall equipment effectiveness) on this new machine,” says Simpson. “There’s no doubt that this machine runs well at rated speed. We intend to take full advantage of this improved efficiency and tout its unique features to our customers. Internally, we’ll be seeing improved efficiency in make-ready and run speeds that will improve our cost competitiveness.”

    When SCT determined that it needed another new press, part of its calculation was to keep its Mansfield plant humming without interruption. “One of the hallmark attributes of KBA North America is its service mindset,” says Hunt. “In the fast-paced business of supplying packaging to food manufacturers, we cannot afford to be without a printing press. The entire KBA North America Company understands that mindset and is focused on keeping us operational.” 

    Adds Hunt, “As in any competitive business, one must evaluate all suppliers to understand innovations in technology and/or features and benefits that could be of value in an ever-changing business environment. We have had an outstanding relationship with KBA North America and already have two other of its presses in our converting system. In this case, having a Rapida 106 in operation made us more inclined to pursue a new Koenig & Bauer press.”

    Although SCT has celebrated more than nine decades in business, it continues to set new goals for the future. “Our customers identify SCT as having best-in-class service,” says John Zeiser, president and CEO of Southern Champion Tray. “With the advent of E-commerce and the speed desired by consumers, we are continually challenging our leadership team. To respond, we are continually investing in our employees, capital equipment, and facilities to ensure that we are always exceeding our customer’s expectations.”

    Established in 1927, Southern Champion Tray is a third-generation family-owned business producing a wide variety of folding cartons used throughout the continental United States, Puerto Rico, Canada, and Mexico. A team of over 400 employees are based in the firm’s converting plants in Chattanooga, Tenn. and Mansfield, Texas. The company serves a broad base of markets, including bakery, foodservice, supermarket, institutional, industrial, retail, computers and electronics, personal care, hardware, automotive, medical, office supply, pet supplies, toys, textiles, and sporting goods. Its advanced sheetfed lithographic and flexographic web presses in six- and seven-color configurations along with converting capabilities such as slitting, sheeting, die cutting, gluing, windowing, clamshell, and tray forming provide a wide array of products for its customers.