The Peterborough-based company signed for a Muller Martini Vareo perfect binder with inline InfiniTrim three-knife trimmer at the Hunkeler Innovationdays event this week.
Bonacia is an all-digital house and prints a range of short-run book and journal products, using its three Xerox Nuvera and two Kodak Nexpress digital presses.
Production director Carl Whitelock said the firm had started looking into the bindery upgrade last year, and also visited Muller Martini’s Print Finishing Center and Bookbinding Academy as part of the detailed assessment process before making the decision.
He said the firm’s key goals in implementing lean processes were to “reduce overtime, reduce changeover times, reduce manual interventions and reduce unit costs”.
“The idea is to remove a bottleneck. We will replace three or four bits of kit and streamline processes from binding to trimming,” Whitelock explained.
“It’s a big leap for us, but we will actually save money by going down the Muller Martini route – it’s so efficient and will give us extra productivity, the ROI actually works out better,” he said.
The firm is investing around £600,000 in the new setup, which will be installed at the end of April.
Bonacia will take out the smaller of its two existing Horizon perfect binding lines and associated trimming and guillotining kit to make room for the new equipment at its 1,115sqm facility at Woodston.
The Muller Martini system can product up to 2,000bph, which potentially doubles capacity at the firm.
“We do everything from books of one to runs of up to eight or ten thousand, so flexibility in changing from job-to-job is really important for us,” Whitelock added.
“Hardbacks are increasing, so we have also looked at speeding up our hardback process.”
The firm could also decide to add Muller Martini’s new endsheet feeder for hardcover books at a later date.
Bonacia is targeting sales of £6m this year and employs just over 90 staff.
Picture shows, left to right: Bonacia shift supervisor Ross Tee, Whitelock, and Muller Martini sales manager David McGinlay at Hunkeler Innovationdays.