FFEI and Xaar combine for ‘Printbar Uncovered’

Max Goldbart
Monday, May 22, 2017

FFEI has taken on the sale and distribution of Xaar’s Print Bar System, dubbing the new partnership Printbar Uncovered.

FFEI took on the system a few weeks ago but the partnership will be officially launched at September's Label Expo trade show in Brussels, after the product itself was launched at the same show two years ago. Price of the system, which incorporates Nazdar inks, ranges from £70,000 to £150,000.

FFEI helped develop the system but Xaar was in charge of sales and distribution from the start. However now that this role has been handed back to FFEI, its managing director Andy Cook said he wants to target the system at OEMs rather than end-users.

Cook said: “Xaar were inundated with inquiries, predominantly from end-users. Everybody wants different things with the Print Bar, they want to do lots of wonderful stuff, so we had several sit-downs with Xaar to see if it might be better if we take this on.

“Xaar are here to drive adoption of their technologies. They ceded this opportunity, they opened up this huge interest and now it’s a question of how to make it reality and get adoption at the practical level.”

Cook added that FFEI is already in discussions with four potential OEM users.

The system is engineered to add single-pass digital inkjet UV capability to roll-to-roll or sheetfed presses. It uses Xaar 102 printheads (GS6, GS12 or GS40 depending on application) and can be integrated with a variety of conventional and digital presses and converting equipment. It is available in widths of 140mm to 560mm and prints at speeds of up to 75m/min. 

The ink supply system from Nazdar includes spot colours, a range of UV curable inks, protective lacquers, pigmented high-opacity whites and cold foil adhesives.

Buyers can also customise their own systems by applying their own cover to the heads, incorporating a touchscreen or linking to their own MIS.

Cook added: “What’s important is the concept of hybrid printing, digital and traditional, there are a lot of equipment companies that are seeing hybrid printing as a long-term future, so therefore the distribution channel will reflect that.”

Last year, Hertfordshire-based FFEI launched several new media handling and digital finishing enhancements for its Graphium hybrid digital inkjet label press.

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