Landa: "I love Drupa"

Landa Digital Printing Q&A: Nick Clements, Arik Gordon and Benny Landa
Landa Digital Printing Q&A: Nick Clements, Arik Gordon and Benny Landa

Landa Digital Printing (LDP) founder Benny Landa has reaffirmed his commitment to exhibiting at Drupa 2021 – as long as the pandemic situation allows the firm to participate safely.

Speaking at an online Q&A session with recently-appointed CEO Arik Gordon, and hosted by LDP’s ‘Dr Nano’ Nick Clements, the duo fielded a number of questions from among “hundreds” submitted prior to the event.

LDP was originally launched at Drupa 2012, and the business had a large, high-profile presence at the last Drupa in 2016.

“I love Drupa. Drupa has emerged as the industry trade show – in fact it’s the only trade show that Landa Digital Printing has ever participated in,” Landa stated.

“It’s the place to communicate our messages and share our vision to educate our market about what’s possible and how we see the future of this industry.

“So yes, we definitely plan to participate in the next Drupa – subject only to the prevailing public health situation. If it's safe for our employees and our customers, we will be there.”

Landa also said that the firm had big ambitions for extending the use of its Nanography indirect inkjet technology, which is currently deployed on B1 sheetfed presses and its soon-to-ship W10 web press for flexible packaging.

“In the future Nanography will touch all mainstream printing markets. From web-fed publishing and corrugated to labels, to metal printing and textiles. And more,” he stated.

LDP now has a dozen of its 6,500sph S10 straight printing and S10P perfecting presses installed worldwide, with two installations completed since the pandemic took hold.

Gordon, who joined the business in the summer, said its plans had understandably been held up by Covid restrictions. However, it was pressing ahead with new Covid-secure processes: “From mid-August to the end of the year we are going to install hopefully four or five more presses,” he said.

The 1m-wide, 100m/min W10 web press for flexible packaging, which was originally slated to have its first installation in early 2020, will now go into 'pre-beta' testing at an unnamed customer by the end of the year.

“There is a very clear market need for digital flexible packaging and it is one of our most strategic markets,” Landa added.

“But it is of course also one of the most demanding because it requires not only superb quality, high speed and competitive economics, but you also need to be able to print onto a huge range of materials from very thin plastic films to metal foils, paper and carton.

“And of course digital white is a must.”

He also cited the need for the W10’s output to be compatible with a variety of laminating materials, and to be resistant to high temperatures for flexpack applications that require pasteurisation.

“It has been a huge job developing all these capabilities in a single press,” he said.

Gordon, who previously worked with LDP's active chairman Asher Levy at Orbotech, said that one of his key tasks would be to put in place appropriate structures as LDP shifts from being a technology developer to rapidly growing its installed user base.

“We are now at the transition from technology to a market-oriented company. And that means we must have much more focus on our outbound rotations, customer focus and of course execution,” Gordon said.

“We need to build the infrastructure in order to support, very soon, hundreds of presses out there and that’s a different focus than before. Of course, we continue to develop the technology in parallel,” he added.

Landa said that a number of future enhancements to the S10 were in the pipeline including the double delivery previewed earlier this week, multiple stackers, the high-speed 13,000sph option, and other special colours beyond white.

LDP recently signed up Em De Jong as its sixth customer in Europe. The only UK installation so far is at Bluetree Group’s Route 1 Print operation in South Yorkshire.