Printed Easy revamps and reinvests

Lancaster: "I think we have something unique"
Lancaster: "I think we have something unique"

Online print specialist Printed Easy has completed a multimillion pound investment programme that included a complete rebuild of its website and an array of new equipment for label and commercial print products.

The firm has “opened up” its labels offering with a raft of additional kit including four ABG DigiLase Series 4 laser cutters, an ABG DigiJet digital embellishment line for spot UV and foiling, and an ABG Digicon die-cutter. 

Managing director Jon Lancaster said: “Labels has been a great addition to the business. We are continuously adding to our offering and that now includes die-cutting and embellishment. Customers can order very complex products online, and I think we have something unique there.”

The £5m spend over the past 18 months also includes two label sheeters and two automatic core cutting machines at its 4,000sqm Letchworth Garden City factory.

Printed Easy’s battery of HP digital presses has been augmented with a HP Indigo 100K giving the firm three B2 Indigos, alongside two new HP Indigo WS6900 label presses and its existing seven-colour 7900 model. 

Lancaster said that general commercial work had “come back nicely” post-Covid, alongside the growth at its labels wing. 

A six-colour Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 106 with coater is the centrepiece of its litho offering.

The rebuild of its website involving a further £500,000 spend was completed in August, and includes enhancements to the backend and new features in ‘my account’ for customers.

“Adding die-cutting to labels was itself a two month project,” Lancaster added. 

“The reason we’re successful is because we focus on developing all the software ourselves. That’s important because it gives us the flexibility to develop new things and I’m really glad we did it.”

The backend tools mean that, amid a multitude of paper price rises, Printed Easy can change substrate prices across all products in half an hour. 

The capex programme also included an Autobond Mini 74 thermal laminator with a bespoke configuration, a six-station Horizon StitchLiner Mk III, two Duplo Multigraf folders and two Morgana Autocreasers, and two new shrinkwrapping lines. 

Lancaster said that in the highly-competitive web-to-print market, Printed Easy focused on “offline printing, sold online”.

“We have to be competitive so we offer custom sizes, versions and substrates,” he explained.  

“Customers can have any size, any quantity and any pagination from small to very large, and our labels are highly optioned.”

The approach seems to be paying off, with the 51-employee firm achieving record results for the year ending 30 September, with sales up 44% to £12.33m, and pre-tax profits up 57% at £3.7m.

Printed Easy has also switched all its company cars to Teslas for the tax and environmental benefits.