The Sheffield-based firm confirmed the order for the Ryobi 924 with supplier Apex Digital Graphics at Ipex last month. The press is currently being installed and will be fully operational before Christmas. The investment takes ProCo’s litho spend this year to more than £1.6m.
The first LED-UV press – a Ryobi 925 – was installed in August. The latest order is for a four-colour version of the same machine, but with an extended delivery and higher-powered LEDs.
An LED-UV curing unit is incorporated into the configuration for near instant drying of the sheet. PDS-E SpectroDrive inline printing quality control enables the operator to monitor and maintain the quality of the printed sheet throughout the run.
The two Ryobi presses have replaced two five-colour Manrolands, which have been sold on. One went out in the summer and the other will be decommissioned after Christmas.
The firm said moving from the B2/SRA2 format to SRA1 has meant it can now be more competitive on a wider range of work, particularly longer runs.
“Our previous conventional litho presses were beginning to show their age, so rather than having the ongoing maintenance costs we looked at the ROI and decided on this second new press,” said ProCo production director Graeme Parry.
“The first press gave us more firepower in terms of the different sheet size and obviously running a lot faster. It was previously taking two or three days for work to dry in some cases plus the print runs were longer anyway because it was only half a sheet size.
“With the common sheet format across both machines it will make planning a lot simpler, and give us the ability to switch work between machines when needed.”
The new press will also give the company more flexibility for printing onto plastic substrates. It currently handles this type of work on its large-format kit but can handle longer runs more easily with the Ryobi machine.
ProCo, which last year purchased the remaining stake in Stansted-based Concept Communications group, which it brought under the ProCo banner, also runs four HP Indigos across its two sites, including an HP Indigo 10000.
The 150-staff company, which is tracking turnover of around £16m for its current financial year, also operates two Agfa Anapurnas on the large-format side, both of which were installed in the summer.