AB Print Group has bought a range of new machinery to boost its productivity and in-house capabilities.
Over the past few months the Batley, West Yorkshire-based commercial printer has taken delivery of a Fujifilm Acuity LED 1600, a Heidelberg Polar guillotine, a Watkiss PowerSquare bookletmaker and a long sheet feeder for its existing Kodak NexPress SE 2500.
James Kemp, print manager of AB Print Group, which has 45 staff and a turnover of around £3m, said the firm has invested more than £200,000 on the new machinery, which is all additional to its existing plant list.
The large-format hybrid UV Acuity LED 1600 can print on substrates including PET film, PETG, self-adhesive vinyl and conventional PVC, stock paper, board and lightweight aluminium.
Kemp said it is “outstanding” for fine art, detailed and delicate work and very cost-effective for short runs.
“We’d been printing a lot of small, detailed work, but there was certain detailed work that we were missing out on," he said.
We can now do a lot of work that we would have previously declined, such as printing on 1mm-thick plastics.
“Low-run, high-quality labels have also been especially successful, as have applications that require printing with the white ink option. We’ve even started printing our own business cards on them and these have made quite an impression.”
The company looked at alternatives from Canon and Roland DG but found the Fujifilm device to be the most attractive option.
The firm’s new long-sheet feeder for its Kodak NexPress SE 2500 digital press has enabled it to take on more short-run work and increased the range of jobs it can complete in-house.
“That investment is bringing in all kinds of work that we couldn’t do full stop before because it can print a sheet that is 914x320mm.”
The business also runs two Komori litho presses, an Inca Spyder V large-format flatbed printer and SIAS and SPS screen printers.
It specialises in coatings including latexing (scratch cards), UV varnishing, remoist gumming and scratch ‘n‘ sniff inks and also offers laminating, CAD cutting, die-cutting, folding and stitching to trade customers.