Mike Hilton’s Global News Review: Innovative Print Applications Boost Dynamics

ValuePublishing Mike Hilton 2017.001

Two highlights among many others: Xaar announcing the official opening of its new 3D Centre. And Xeikon Café was dedicated to innovations in packaging.


Graphic Repro On-line News Review to Friday 31 March 2017

Welcome to this week’s news roundup with 35 articles from the past week and Laurel Brunner’s latest Verdigris Blog, with a headline which conjures up memories of a popular breakfast cereal package featuring three popular gnomic elf mascots – rather surprisingly dating back as far as 1933, with the slogan having been coined even four years earlier in a print advert in 1929, some two years after the popular breakfast cereal was first invented. Snap, Crackle and Pop! Or as they might say in Germany, Knisper! Knasper! Knusper!

There are two new additions to Online Features this week: firstly from KBA detailing its DriveTronic Plate Ident technology enabling perfect automatic plate changes to take place on all formats of KBA sheetfed presses; and then from Heidelberg as innovation takes hold in industrial commercial postpress with the huge success of drupa-generation Stahlfolders in both the UK and Germany.

This last week of March and the end of the first quarter of 2017 has been a fairly busy week for news of a totally mixed bag for you to wade through. The past week has also seen Xeikon Café staged in Lier, Belgium, and Sign & Digital UK take place at the NEC, so I’m pretty sure there will be more post-event news still to follow. The major Xeikon announcement of its entry into UV inkjet with new Panther technology appears on Tuesday, followed by a surprise announcement on Wednesday that Wim Maes, CEO of Xeikon is stepping down will leave in early May.

Key articles this week that deserve checking out come from Gareth Ward at the Print Business UK, and lead the headlines on Tuesday with Ricoh’s high-speed inkjet presses; followed with the leader on Wednesday, with observations from the recently released drupa Global Trends Report, which has seen litho biting back as the digital drive dips. Another of Gareth’s articles also appears on Friday, in which he provides his post-show impression of Hunkeler Innovationdays in Lucerne in February – with inkjet now pushing firmly at the door of commercial print. You will find Xaar plc leading the news on Friday, announcing the official opening of its new 3D Centre on Nottingham Science Park in the UK earlier in the week; and Esko on Thursday, with its plans to debut Simplified Workflow for Labels at Labelexpo Europe, taking place in Brussels in September.



“There is no doubt that High Speed Sintering technology can transform 3D Printing from a low volume prototyping solution to a mainstream manufacturing process,’ said Professor Neil Hopkinson, the original inventor of the transformational High Speed Sintering technology, who heads up Xaar’s 3D division. ‘The step change to high volume manufacturing will be most efficiently achieved through partnerships with committed stakeholders across the supply chain. Our new 3D Centre in Nottingham is the ideal location for such partnerships to flourish.“



The usual collection of recent installation and sales successes began on Monday with Heidelberg Anicolor and Suprasetter CTP at Allura Printing in the United States; then Manroland Sheetfed at Copag in Brazil. On Tuesday we had Kartongbolaget in Sweden with a HP Indigo 30000 and TRESU iCoat coating line; and Gieselmann Druck in Bielefeld, Germany with a new Muller Martini Primera MC. Wednesday saw Cape Town-based RSA Litho add a Xerox 1000 Colour Press and Xerox Versant 80 from Bytes and Oxbow; followed by Marrs Printing & Packaging in the US with a KBA Rapida 106; and then Israeli digital photobook specialist Liel Albums with a new 8-colour Sawgrass system. Thursday saw Servinform in Spain become the latest transactional printer to adop t the high-speed Ricoh Pro VC60000; followed by Muller Martini with a Diamant MC 60 bookline for Pollina in Luçon, France. On Friday we had GPS Colour Graphics in Northern Ireland step up production with Fujifilm’s Superia CTP and Superia plates investment; while Columbus Production in the USA has added a Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 106; and lastly, Micropress in the UK has invested in EFI‘s Midmarket Print Suite MIS/ERP system.

We had new kit announced on Monday from both Hunkeler and SPGPrints; and then on Tuesday from Flint Group with new Thermal processor for flexo, in addition to Xeikon with its new Panther UV inkjet system for labels which is already mentioned above.

Other items to look out for are the survey from GWG; a new partnership for Sappi’s Biotech division; acquisitions by both Goss and Canon; a call for entries for the British Book Design Production Awards for 2017, with a deadline for entries of 30 June, and FESPA’s winner for the Wrap Master Design Competition.

Our tailender once again serves to remind you of the 2017 Canon South African Disabled Golf Open taking place in Cape Town in May, with George Mecs from France competing in South Africa for the first time, and joining players from Canada, the United Kingdom, the United States and South Africa for this popular event. You’ll find it among Thursday’s headlines.


That’s it until next time. You will find so much more if you scroll down carefully.

My best regards, 

Mike Hilton



Prokom IMG_1686

Prokom Webinar Digital Transformation

Webinar – Digital Transformation
Wednesday 19th April 2017 4pm (GMT) 


e-News comprises:  Headline News – Online Feature Articles – the Verdigris initiative and Wild Format Technology Guides from Digital Dots, and our Drupa and Newsroom, all of which can be accessed from the Website Home Page and its Index. We also have News in Review, which provides a weekly overview and listing of all news added to the site in the prior week. 

Headline News

Almost 29,000 news items have now gone online since we launched our Website in September 2001. News for the past 24 months can still be accessed via the Home Page and its continuation news page

Week beginning Mon 27 March – date published also appears in article footline


GWG needs your PDF workflow know how

The Ghent Workgroup needs your knowledge and expertise on PDF workflow and asks you to participate in its latest survey…

Sappi Biotech division partners with CellMark

Sappi Biotech appoints CellMark to increase global sales of Hansa lignin products produced at Sappi’s Tugela Mill…

Goss acquires Graphic Automation Controls

Goss International today announced the acquisition of Graphic Automation Controls, Inc. (GAC) in an asset transaction…

Hunkeler PEM removes dust from paper webs without contact

The PEM paper web de-dusting module cleans paper webs without contact before entering an inkjet printing system…

SPGPrints new 914mm RotaLEN direct laser engraver

New RotaLEN direct laser engraver brings efficient rotary screen imaging for labels and packaging…

Allura Printing moves to offset with SM 52 Anicolor

Allura Printing reduces production time from 16 hours to 3 hours with Speedmaster SM 52 Anicolor and Suprasetter A52…

Copag adds the new Roland Evolution to its pack

Pioneering Brazilian company invests in Manroland Sheetfed’s Roland 700 Evolution with UV and Ultima configuration…


Ricoh emphasises the impact of value creation

The name of the game for Ricoh is value creation potential of digital inkjet on its VC60000 and VC40000 presses. By Gareth Ward…

British Book Design and Production Awards call for entries

The BPIF, Oxford Brookes University, The Publishers Association, The Bookseller and The BookMachine call for entries for this year’s Awards. The deadline for entries is Friday 30 June 2017…

Xeikon introduces Panther UV inkjet technology

Xeikon expands portfolio for label printing with unveiling of Panther UV inkjet technology at Xeikon Café in Lier today…

The Xeikon PX3000 debuts at Xeikon Café 2017

Xeikon Café Packaging Innovations 2017 sees unveiling of Xeikon’s new PX3000 UV inkjet digital label press…

Kartongbolaget adds HP Indigo 30000 with integrated iCoat

Kartongbolaget breaks into short-run, personalised cartons with HP Indigo digital printing + TRESU iCoat coating line…

Gieselmann Druck und Medienhaus adds new Primera MC

Gieselmann Druck in Bielefeld, Germany invests in a new Muller Martini Primera MC to bring stitching fully in-house…

Flint’s new Nyloflex Xpress Thermal Plate Processor

Flint Group introduces new thermal plate processing technology in Europe, Middle East and Africa with Nyloflex Xpress…


Litho bites back as digital drive dips says drupa Report

The onward rush of digital printing has been turned according to the latest survey in the 2017 drupa Trends Report. By Gareth Ward…

Printed electronics making its way into more products

Latest OE-A Roadmap edition presents diverse range of application examples and challenges for organic and printed electronics…

Wim Maes to step down as CEO of Xeikon in early May

Flint Group has named Benoit Chatelard as CEO Digital Solutions to take over from Wim Maes on 8 May…

Blackman & White celebrates record sales year at S&D

Blackman & White showcases new developments at Sign & Digital UK with a positive economic outlook…

RSA Litho boosts its digital investment with Xerox

Cape Town-based RSA Litho eyes digital growth with purchase of Xerox 1000 Colour Press and Xerox Versant 80 from Oxbow…

Marrs optimises pressroom with new KBA Rapida 106

Marrs Printing & Packaging adds another ‘arrow in its quiver’ to increase quality, efficiency, and productivity…

Liel Albums adds Israel’s first Sawgrass VJ 628

Israeli digital photobook specialist Liel Albums has elevated its fine art photographic printing with 8-colour system…


Esko: Simplified Label Workflow for Labelexpo Europe 2017

The best label workflow, simplified. Esko turnkey solutions simplify label prepress workflow and process management…

Canon acquires Kite.ly e-Commerce platform

Canon Europe acquires London-based Kite.ly e-Commerce platform to expand its mobile printing capabilities via any device…

FESPA announces Wrap Master Design Competition winner

Winning design to be applied to Haugaard Racing Team speedboat for 2017 World Formula 4 UIM Powerboat Championship…

The 2017 Canon South African Disabled Golf Open

South African Disabled Golf Association (SADGA) welcomes Frenchman George Mecs to the Open field in Cape Town in May…

Innovation in postpress taking hold in industrial print

Industrial print shops increase overall productivity using innovative drupa-generation folding machines from Heidelberg…

Servinform adds Ricoh Pro VC60000 to reach new markets

The Spanish transactional printer has become the latest print services provider to adopt the Ricoh Pro VC60000…

Muller Martini Diamant MC 60 for Pollina in Luçon

The French company’s first Diamant MC 60 bookline provides a ‘well-rounded’ solution in the hardcover segment…


Xaar’s 3D Centre in Nottingham opens for business

The official opening of Xaar plc’s new 3D Centre on the Nottingham, Science Park in the UK took place this week…

Hunkeler underlines how Inkjet is pushing at the door of commercial print

There has been a step up in quality of inkjet printing since Hunkeler two years ago. Presses can now match offset for quality, but the challenge is now about creating the applications. By Gareth Ward…

OE-A Business Climate Survey results are positive

Positive outlook from OE-A members on the development of organic and printed electronics announced at LOPEC 2017…

Agfa Apogee gains GWG PDF preflight certification

Agfa’s Apogee Prepress workflow has passed the latest Ghent Workgroup PDF preflight certification…

GPS Colour Graphics opts for Fujifilm Superia technology

Northern Ireland’s biggest commercial printer steps up production with Fujifilm Superia CTP and plates investment…

Columbus Productions adds Speedmaster XL 106 Perfector

The Georgia-based company adds Speedmaster XL 106 as part of its continued investment towards becoming a market leader…

Micropress opts for EFI Midmarket Print Suite

Micropress, one of the UK’s largest commercial printers has invested in EFI’s Midmarket Print Suite MIS/ERP…

The lead articles from a week last Friday… 

Packaging Printing Redefined at Manroland Web Systems

The Manroland Varioman: Background and facts about the innovative web offset Varioman press for flexible packaging printing…

KBA-Flexotecnica hails successful start to 2017

And closer co-operation with KBA-Digital & Web with new shared demo centre for digital and flexo in Würzburg…

GraphicRepro.Net e-News  (ISSN 1814-2923) is sponsored and made possible by:

Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG  (Heidelberg), The world’s largest printing press manufacturer for the industry worldwide. Heidelberg customers enjoy the most comprehensive and extensive sales and service network in the industry for JDF compliant workflow, computer-to-plate, sheetfed offset, Web-to-print, digital printing, digital inkjet for labels and packaging, folding and finishing, and consumables. with offices in around 170 countries. Visit the Heidelberg Website for more information.

drupa 2020 (drupa), the international flagship fair of the printing and media industry, responds to the challenges of the changing market and provides pioneering solutions for the future. This is highlighted by the new marketing and communication strategy where drupa claims its position as ‘No.1 for Print & Crossmedia Solutions’. Visit the drupa 2020 Website.You should also visit blog.drupa.comfor the very latest industry news and developments.

Online Feature articles 2014 – 2017

Only 49 articles for last year – but you will find another eleven Expert Articles and ten drupa ante portas Blogs from Andreas Weber in our drupa Newsroom. There were over 70 last year, and over 90 in 2013 and in 2014 which can still be accessed via the Index on the Home Page.

Value Dialogueexclusive Interview series

An important role in the breakthrough of industrial digital printing!

‘We keep our promises: sustainable industrial production with premium quality digital printing.’ – Montserrat Peidro-Insa, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG. Interview by Andreas Weber…

Online Features Mar/Apr Chapter 04


Innovation in postpress taking hold in industrial print

Industrial print shops increase overall productivity using innovative drupa-generation folding machines from Heidelberg…


Perfect plate changes on Rapida sheetfed offset presses

KBA’s DriveTronic Plate Ident is designed to be used with Rapida sheetfed offset presses in half-, medium- and large-formats…


Elegant printed products in waterless coldset at RBD

Rheinisch-Bergische Druckerei invests in a further varnishing unit for the waterless KBA Cortina in Düsseldorf…

Verdigris – Environmental Initiative

Laurel Brunner’s weekly Verdigris Blogs 2017

The Snap, Crackle and Pop of Flexible Packaging

The weekly Verdigris blog by Laurel Brunner – Fri 31 Mar


Case Getting Louder for ISO 21331

The weekly Verdigris blog by Laurel Brunner – Fri 24 Mar

Technology Guides – from Digital Dots

Technology Guides for Wild Format 2016 – 2017

This is the brand new series for 2016 – 2017. All have illustrated PDFs to download.

No 24  Calibration & Device Profiling – Intro

While a surprising number of prepress operators and designers still spend a huge amount of time and materials ‘trying to get the colours right’, this should really be a quite straight forward process today. By Paul Lindström…

Drupa Newsroom

Our Drupa Newsroom with news from Messe Düsseldorf and for Drupa 2016 can be found in the Index. It is divided into Chapters for your convenience… but you must scroll down to view each Chapter and its content when you visit the Newsroom

News from Messe Düsseldorf

4th drupa Global Trends Report 2017 available now

The Report, tracking key economic and market developments in the global print industry is available now!…

The various Chapters in the drupa Newsroom are highlighted below. When you enter, just scroll down to see and access the complete collection::

drupa daily; drupa Exhibitors’ show + post-show News; drupa pre-show Exhibitor news; post-drupa from Messe Düsseldorf; drupa ante portas Blogs from Andreas Weber; drupa Expert Articles – and more

The Graphic Repro On-line Website is supported and sponsored by: 

Canon SA,  Screen Europe,  Drupa 2020,  Esko,   Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG,  Kemtek Imaging SystemsLeonhard Kurz Stiftung,  Manroland Web Systems GmbH,  Ricoh Europe,  Sappi Limited  and  UPM-Kymmene

If you would like to send news for consideration for the Graphic Repro On-line Website (ISSN 1814-2915) or to submit comments, please e-mail Mike Hilton at: graphicrepro.za@gmail.com.

Our Website urls are:



GraphicRepro.Net e-News (ISSN 1814-2923)  provides weekly updates from the Graphic Repro On-line Website and is  compiled and published by Mike Hilton, graphicrepro.net, PO Box 10 Peterburgskoe Shosse 13/1, 196605 Pushkin 5, St. Petersburg, Russia.  e-mail graphicrepro.za@gmail.com



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