The Newcastle Upon Tyne-based firm’s new two-colour Sias large-format multi formula screen printer will be operational by the end of this month.
The device, which has a maximum print area of 1,500x2,350mm, has replaced smaller-format four-colour and single-colour screen printers and will sit alongside a retained single-colour press.
The new machine will also join an existing suite of large-format flatbeds, including an Inca S50 and R40, a Fujifilm Acuity and an EFI Vutek HS125, as well as a raft of small-format digital and finishing equipment.
The Sias investment completes Imprint’s drive to upgrade existing screen machinery to larger-format to facilitate compatibility across all machinery and further enhance its product offering to provide special ink colours, metallics, fluorescents, rub removals, glow in the dark inks, glitters and varnishes.
Imprint managing director Dave Bullivant said: “Screen printing is an integral part of creative visual communication, despite the fact that many foresaw its demise or its more limited use with the arrival of digital printing.
“When it came down to it, however, screen printing proved to be an irreplaceable printing method, which continues to develop, producing better and cheaper products, using ever-more environmentally-friendly methods and with a broader scope of materials that cannot currently be printed with the digital process.
“There are many advantages to using screen printing, however the main advantage is the unique visual result it creates. The inks used are very durable, the colours are extremely vivid, particularly for outdoor uses, making this a unique reproduction technique. And when combining this with digital technology and the creative opportunities, the only limits are imagination.”
Imprint, which predominantly produces POS, POP and large-format outdoor media for retail customers, has 135 staff and a turnover of £15m. The firm was acquired by Pureprint Group, which employs more than 400 people and has a turnover in excess of £65m, in 2014.
Imprint said it has continued to expand since being acquired, growth being driven by its online promotional management tool Additions, which was developed in-house specifically for retailers to control and improve the efficiency of POS. The system will see the release of the new Store Smart module later this year.