VGL first in UK to sign for Durst’s P5

VGL has become the first company in the UK and Ireland to sign for a specialised version of the first machine from Durst’s new P5 series.

The hybrid roll-to-roll/flatbed P5 250 HS, configured with white as a printing colour, is expected to be installed at VGL’s 2,230sqm Smallmead production facility in Reading, Berkshire, in the second week of August.

The machine is VGL’s first Durst flatbed, though it already operates seven other machines from the manufacturer – two Rhotex fabric printers and five roll-to-roll digital inkjet machines – as well as various machines from Inca, Fujifilm and HP among others.

The business said the P5 would dramatically ramp up capacity, quadruple the output of an unspecified older machine with a similar footprint that it is replacing, and enhance its offering to a variety of customers.

VGL managing director David Gray, who started at the company last year after previously holding roles of UK sales director at CirclePrinters and group sales director at Polestar, said: “Our flatbed capacity needed upgrading because one of our machines had come to the end of its useful life.

“We reviewed the offerings of a few other manufacturers and the P5 was strategically the best fit for our business in terms of cost, machine output and print quality.”

He added: “It will open a lot of doors for VGL and is a huge step forward. We also recently purchased a new [Esko] Kongsberg C44 cutting table to bolster our finishing capabilities, bringing our total investment in new kit this year to circa £700,000.”

The P5 series was unveiled by Durst in February. Targeted at the high-volume industrial production of POS and for producing one-offs in offset quality, the P5 250 HS is the first press in the new range.

The machine has high resolution modes of 1,200dpi and can print at up to 240sqm/hr in two-pass mode. It features the latest MEMS nozzle plates powered by Durst proprietary data-path and electronics.

VGL supplies major retailers, exhibitions and live event organisers, museums and public and private sectors, including rail and fleet companies. Its common applications include building wraps, hoardings, in-store graphics, window displays, POS, vehicle wrapping, display systems, promotional displays and interior graphics.

The £15m-turnover business has 122 staff and operates from three production sites in Reading totalling more than 6,000sqm space.