Large-format POS specialist Best Digital has installed the world’s first Screen Truepress Jet W1632UV flatbed inkjet printer after ordering it at Drupa in a £500,000 two-machine deal that also included a Screen Truepress Jet 2500UV hybrid wide-format printer. The investment is expected to treble capacity and double turnover to £3m by 2014 as the company expands into new markets with new added-value products.
Best, which employs 12 staff its premises in Welwyn Garden City, has enjoyed rapid growth since it was founded in 2008 by Geoff Rawlings and Danny Colegate. Sales for 2012 are on target for £1.2m, generated by POS, exhibition and display graphics for leading brands.
Rawlings, MD, describes Best’s market position as being “in the niche between small digital companies with ‘print and mount’ facilities and the major POS suppliers.” Under the strapline ‘Large format, direct to almost everything’, Best provides a total package from concept and design through to production and installation.
“It’s been a very successful formula so far,” said Rawlings, “but competition is increasingly fierce and customers are more and more demanding. To grow the business we need to maintain margins, and to do this we need to develop added-value products that set us apart from the competition. The new Screen machines are vital to this strategy - armed with them we can attack markets like retail with products such as quality double-sided window graphics.”
Best operates a variety of digital printers, including solvent- and dye-based machines. The Truepress Jet W1632UV and Truepress Jet 2500 have replaced two Zund Combi UV units, explains Rawlings. “The quality of the work coming off the Combis was fine, but we needed to produce it faster, so we started looking to increase our firepower.” But finding the combination of speed and quality Best demands proved elusive: “The machines on the market were either beyond our budget or fell short on speed or quality - until we saw the Truepress Jet W1632UV, that is.”
The Truepress Jet W1632UV prints at up to 94m2/hr on media up to 1,600 mm x 3,200mm with a maximum thickness of 48mm. There’s a maximum apparent resolution of 1,200dpi. The machine uses Screen's proprietary Truepress inks and comes with six colours (CMYKLcLm) as standard.
Rawlings said that to target larger jobs and provide back-up, Best was seeking a two-machine investment, and the Truepress Jet 2500UV proved the perfect partner for the Truepress Jet W1632UV. “The combination gives us enormous versatility as well as a trebling in capacity compared to the Zund Combis. The Truepress Jet 2500UV is also fast and produces high quality work, has the unique ability to print seven layers and features a roll-to-roll option. Because both machines use the same inks, so we can keep colour consistent when we split jobs between the two.
“These machines take us into the next generation of large-format digital printing. Without sacrificing valuable floorspace, we can produce more print, in more sophisticated formats and longer runs.”