Paragon CC moves into on-demand books with Ricoh spend

Jo Francis
Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Ricoh has scooped a major deal with Paragon Customer Communications that will see the business add book-on-demand production to the array of facilities at its Dagenham supersite.

Phillips: "We are always looking to diversify and fuel our growth"
Phillips: "We are always looking to diversify and fuel our growth"

Paragon CC is part of the €1.08bn (£958m) turnover Paragon Group of companies, with pro forma sales at the business now at €1.34bn since its most recent year-end in June 2020.

The latest Ricoh spend has seen the business install the first V20100 system in Europe, together with a Ricoh Pro C9210 sheetfed digital press, as part of a book-on-demand setup that can produce a wide array of book and journal products.

The V20100 continuous feed mono inkjet press has a print width of up to 558mm, allowing it to handle three-up B5 format books, and prints at 150m/min at 600x600dpi.

Paragon CC's use of Ricoh inkjet technology dates back more than a decade. Site director Dave Phillips said the business viewed Ricoh as a partner, and the fresh spend represented a "multi-million" pound investment.

“Our latest Ricoh investment will allow us to diversify our product offering specifically around book on demand which remains an exciting area of growth for inkjet. We value the input of Ricoh to our business both in terms of technology and as a partner in developing new business,” he said.

"We are always looking to diversify and fuel our growth; I think this is especially important during the pandemic and the opportunity presented itself for us to step into the area of book on demand production, so we took the leap," Phillips explained.

The new kit was installed in Q4 last year and is fully up and running. 

"We are currently producing educational material on demand using Ricoh V20100 for the text sections and 9210 cut-sheet for the covers. To complement the print we have a number of finishing equipment including Hunkeler high-speed plough fold sheeter, Komfi laminator, and Renz punch/Wiro binder."

The spend also includes a Pro VC70000 high speed colour inkjet, installed last November, which joins two existing VC60000 lines. Paragon is also using Ricoh’s ProcessDirector workflow automation software to manage production across multiple sites – the business has 16 locations across the UK.

Last year the business teamed with Royal Mail to manage the delivery of Covid-19 home testing kits using its multi-site capabilities.

The VC70000 can print onto coated paper stocks without the need for pre- or post-coating, and will be used for a range of work including direct mail, personalised financial reports such as pension statements, and other collateral. It prints at 50m/min at the top resolution of 1,200x1,200dpi, or up to 150m/min at 600x600dpi. The web width is 520mm with a maximum job length of 1,371.6mm,  and handles stock from 40-250gsm.

Ricoh national sales director Simon Isaacs said the new kit would speed up the switch from offset printing to digital, and deliver substantial savings on paper costs.

“We are excited to embark on this new journey with our long-time partner. This book on demand system will allow Paragon to continue producing exceptional work for their customers. Helping them meet their volume needs while supplying an array of printing options to meet all design needs.

“While the Ricoh VC70000 will accelerate the transfer of offset print to digital and allow them to stand out from the crowd, while potentially saving up to 40% in paper costs,” he stated.

The new setup replaces some of Paragon’s existing HP Indigo and Xerox equipment.

Paragon Group operates through three divisions: Paragon CC, Paragon ID, and Paragon Graphic Services.


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