Manroland and Océ reveal details of their digital partnership

Barney Cox
Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Manroland and Océ have elaborated on their recently announced partnership, under which the German offset firm will sell Océ's JetStream range of continuous-feed inkjet digital presses.

The sale of the JetStream, and the recently launched ColorStream 3500 machines, is the first part in a three-part alliance.

The other two elements are joint research and development for future high-volume digital products and multi-disciplinary teams to support the sales operations.

"Drupa 2008 was a wake-up for offset manufacturers," said Océ senior vice president for communications Jan Hol. "If you are a commercial printer you need both offset and digital technologies. Any future investment has to be future proofed."

The deal, which was announced last week, is restricted to Oce’s high-volume continuous feed inkjet machines, with no plans for Manroland to sell any other Océ products, or those from its parent company Canon.

Machines will be sold under the Océ brand.

One area of development and collaboration that the companies confirmed was that Manroland would develop folders for the Océ machines.

"Manroland has expertise in highly productive offset systems as well as corresponding post-processing and finishing systems," said Manroland vice president of marketing Thomas Hauser.

Hol added: "Océ's Production Printing Division is based in Bavaria as is Manroland; they are a good fit."

Applications that the alliance will address include books, inserts, catalogues and brochures.

It will also include newspapers, a market that Océ has targeted for digital production and where Manroland is a leading player.

Hol said: "It's fair to say that compared to other graphic arts markets [newspapers] is a limited market. However, we are convinced that digital print offers a lot of value for newspaper publishers."

Manroland will continue the development of an inkjet system for its newspaper presses with Kodak.

"There is no collision of interests," said Manroland’s Hauser. "With Kodak we developed an application, the Integrated Inkjet printing system. The agreement with Océ addresses a strategic cooperation in marketing, sales and service of industrial inkjet printing technology."

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