Graphic Dimensions eyes labels growth following WS6600 install

Atlanta-headquartered Graphic Dimensions is targetting growth in the wholesale labels industry after installing an HP Indigo WS6600 and launching a label division, New Dimension Labels, late last year.

Graphic Dimensions, which installed the new hardware at its 65,000 square foot production facility in November, was previously a trade-only business forms printer, working with a network of thousands of resellers nationwide.

However, according to Steve Porter, general manager of New Dimension Labels, the company identified an opportunity in labels and packaging to help diversify and grow the business.

He explained: "We feel labels and packaging are growth industries, which is why we targeted them.  With New Dimension Labels we do prime labels that would be used either in packaging or for identification labeling work."

New Dimension Labels does have a national footprint of labeling resellers, but because of shipping costs, the vast majority of the new division’s customers will east of the Mississippi River. "Overall business has been good," Porter noted. "We launched the new division in November and since then it has really taken off.

The company’s labeling production area does have a flexo press for longer runs, but brought in the web-fed WS6600 due to its top speed of 130 linear feet per minute and because it can print on a variety of labeling substrates ranging from 0.18mm to 6.35mm (0.5 to 18 points) thick.

Since in launch a few months ago, New Dimension Labels has received orders with more than 20 different SKUs, which would have been expensive to produce on an analog press. Variable data printing on the new press also enabled it to produce unique text, barcodes as well as images on consecutively printed labels without the plate changes used in the flexo processes. "We’ve been very happy with the quality of the HP equipment," Porter added.

The Graphic Dimension deal extends a bit of an early 2013 hot streak for HP, following the installation of an HP Indigo 7600 at Rochester, NY-based Cohber Press and East Bridgewater, MA-based Harte-Hanks.

Noting the sustained momentum for HP Indigo digital press sales since drupa, David Murphy, Director of Market Development, Americas, HP Graphics Solutions Business, told PrintWeek: "The enhanced portfolio we announced at last year’s event is now a reality in the market. We have seen rapid adoption of our new high-end presses, particularly the HP Indigo 7600 and WS6600, with both current and new customers."

Murphy added early installations of HP's flagship B1 digital press, the Indigo 10000, were going smoothly, noting that overall: "Our customers’ average page volume continues to grow at consistent double-digit rates as they are better able to capture new applications and higher-volume, high-value jobs.

"We see these trends as solid validation of the ongoing analog-to-digital transformation in the market and that print service providers view HP as a trusted partner with whom to invest for future growth."

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