PrintWeek understands that he will head up Heidelberg’s worldwide Prinect business in the newly-created role of general manager.
Prior to joining Pureprint Thirlby was managing director at ESP Colour in Swindon, where he established himself as a worldwide authority on print automation, process improvement, and the industrialisation of printing processes.
ESP was lauded by Heidelberg on more than one occasion as the “world champion” for achieving the shortest makeready times and highest net output from its presses.
He has also worked as a consultant for Heidelberg in the past.
A source described Thirlby as someone who “understands more about automating print businesses than anyone in the world”.
He has already taken up the new role, reporting to Heidelberg senior vice president for digital print solutions Jason Oliver, and will be at Drupa which opens next Tuesday (31 May).
At Drupa Heidelberg is exhibiting under the umbrella theme ‘Simply Smart’, focusing on customer demands caused by the industrialisation of printing.
Its ‘Smart Print Shop’ offering aims to increase customers’ overall performance by integrating digital and offset technology using Prinect Digital Front End.