Visual bids for growth with bookletmaker investment


Expanding Lincoln-based Visual Print & Design has bought a new bookletmaker to boost sales as it considers further acquisitions.

The company installed the Morgana DocuMaster Pro, which cost more than £30,000, three weeks ago to increase its digital booklet sales and push internal finishing.

The machine will be used to try to add £100,000 to the company's £1m turnover in a year by upping capacity to stitch and trim booklets with special finishes such as a new square-back function.

In March the company installed a Mutoh 1324X large-format printer to run alongside a Xerox 770 Digital Colour press and standard finishing equipment.

And nine months ago Visual Print & Design acquired Derby-based Go Digital for an undisclosed sum. Since then it has added £50% in turnover, taking it to £170,000.

Managing director Graham Hunstone said: “We replaced an old Plockmatic bookletmaking machine, which wasn't efficient so we were outsourcing work – around £50,000 in the last eight months.

“Customers really like the the square-back function of the Morgana. It's like perfect binding without the cost because it's stitched instead of glued. The kit also has creasing and folding functions.”

He added: “With the DocuMaster Pro we can now produce stitched and square-back booklets in-house and with exceptional quality finishes from A3 down to A6 sizes.

“The machine runs at 1,500 books per hour allowing us to offer even quicker turnarounds for our customers. It will speed up the production of low to medium digital booklet runs.”

The 11-staff Lincoln site runs a Xerox 770 as well as the Mutoh large-format printer and finishing kit. Meanwhile Go Digital has four staff in Derby and runs two Konica Minoltas, a C6000L and a C754.

Hunstone said: “We hope to push turnover up to £1.2m in the next financial year. We are down to the final wire in a couple of tenders and if they come off it will be a game changer.

“We will then be looking to reinvest; maybe take on more staff. It's a case of watch this space in terms of further acquisitions, we may go for another company.”

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