The Southend-on-Sea outfit received two HP Indigo 10000 digital presses on 24 and 25 April, which were commissioned by the end of the month. They were shortly followed by two Anapurna H2500i LED hybrid systems and a Kongsberg C44 in early May.
A storage room on Solopress’ 9,290sqm premises was cleared out ahead of the installations and refitted to be a production space. It also houses an HP PageWide, several InkTec Jetrix printers and a Fotoba cutter.
Recently appointed managing director Simon Cooper said: “The new room has been fitted out and cleaned up and looks really smart, representing a massive expansion to our capacity, which has fundamentally changed what we can provide.
“We are generally a B2 production facility and found a sweet spot in terms of volumes and paper types that the Indigos can add alongside our litho facilities. It is a perfect fit.
“Overall, this investment is a real positive in how it helps us service our customers’ needs. We can bring some production from our German branch to the UK to get products to customers quicker and be more aggressive on price by improving margins. We are far more productive and the quality on the new machines is phenomenal.”
The seven-colour B2 Indigo 10000s run at 3,450sph simplex print speed.
Agfa’s Anapurna H2500i devices are 2.5 wide and can take both rigid and flexible media, printing at speeds up to 115sqm/hr in draft mode or 57sqm/hr in production mode.
Moving forward, Solopress will be looking into embellishment machines from manufacturers such as Scodix and MGI for its next investment, according to Cooper.
Employing more than 270 members of staff, Solopress is part of a network of web-to-print subsidiaries to the German group Onlineprinters, who acquired it in 2017. It offers litho, digital and wide-format services and turned over in excess of £30m last year.