Ashley House buys Indigo 5500 to meet short-run work demand

Tim Sheahan
Monday, February 16, 2009

Ashley House Printing has made its foray into the digital print market with the purchase of an HP Indigo 5500 following a rise in demand for short-run work.

The seven-colour digital machine has been installed at the Exeter-based printing company to complement its B2 and B3 Heidelberg litho offering.

Established in 1987, the 19-staff business said it is hoping to open up new markets with the digital machine and tap into the growing demand for personalised print.

The £1.75m-turnover business primarily serves design agencies, as well as local authorities and education bodies. It has been using the new press to print a range of jobs ranging from 10-run 24pp brochures, up to 500-run promotional flyers.

Rob Otton, managing director at Ashley House Printing, said: "There was a definite increase in demand for short-run work and I say 'if you can't beat them join them'."

He said: "With the economy as unsettled as it is, we think we'll see people buying a thousand copies at a time, where before they would have requested a run of several thousands to see them through the year."

Otton took over the business in 2005 and plans to grow the level of variable data work the company produces.

"Offering personalisation has really opened up new markets and increased the variety of work we can do," he said.

Although, the company has only produced a handful of personalised jobs to date, it's an area Otton anticipates will grow considerably over the coming months.

He added: "The ability to carry out variable data printing will become of increasing importance, and to do it digitally– not by over-printing – is faster, more efficient, more cost-effective and more profitable."

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