ProCo in £1m litho spend

By Max Goldbart, Friday 19 May 2017

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ProCo has invested around £1m in an SRA1 RMGT Ryobi 925 LED-UV press and a B1 Agfa Avalon N8 platesetter.

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From left: Apex managing director Bob Usher, RMGT international sales manager Kohei Yatsumoto, Parry and Apex sales and marketing director Neil Handforth

The Sheffield-based marketing services printer is looking to meet client demands for quicker turnaround times, along with taking its first step into LED-UV. The press was supplied by RMGT's UK agent Apex Digital Graphics.

The Ryobi, which will replace a four-year-old B2 Manroland 500, is due for installation in August, with the new platesetter being installed in June in order to acclimatise before the press arrives, according to ProCo production director Graeme Parry. The Avalon replaces an older Agfa platesetter.

Parry said: “Nowadays the client dictates the work and what is required. When we are dealing with mainly the digital market, the timeframes from digital are now being transposed to the litho market, so you really need to meet those demands.

“We wanted access to LED-UV curing, which is a main driver from the point of view of quicker turnarounds required by the client, plus once you’re dealing with an instantly dry sheet it’s then going to cut down lead times between printing departments and the associated finishing department.”

Parry said the new machine would give the 140 staff-outfit the opportunity to potentially transfer over SRA1 jobs from its digital department, and that it has a smaller footprint than the Manroland due to it not needing a sealing unit. ProCo’s other Manroland 500 will remain in operation.

The five-colour Ryobi 925 prints at speeds of up to 16,200sph, taking paper sized 920x640mm and at thicknesses of between 0.04mm and 0.6mm. It has a rotary-type stream feeder and an inline spectrophotometer.

ProCo's Avalon N8 is specified to achieve a throughput level of up to 23 plates per hour, with a maximum plate size of 1.2mx950mm.

Parry said there could be further investment in 2017, as ProCo continues to “adapt to meet the client’s needs”.

“In the last few years we’ve reinvested in a core MIS, updated Apogee workflow, as well as upgraded our large-format facilities. So we have to cover a lot,” he added.

ProCo, which last year purchased the remaining stake in Stansted-based Concept Communications group, which it brought under the ProCo banner, also runs four HP Indigos across its two sites, including an HP Indigo 10000, and two Agfa Anapurnas on the large-format side. 

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