The device was installed at the Lincoln-based print and design firm’s 232sqm premises last week. It was bought for around £35,000 from Basildon-based reseller South East Drawing Office.
The 1.37m-wide ValueJet 1324X, which was launched earlier this year, is suitable for long-term outdoor and indoor sign and display applications such as posters, banners, backlit signage, wall coverings, POS displays, fine art reproductions, vehicle graphics and stickers.
The device incorporates micro piezo head technology and delivers sellable print at production speeds of up to 16.4sqm/hr on both vinyl and banner materials at 720dpi, according to Mutoh.
Visual Print & Design managing director Graham Hunstone told PrintWeek he hopes the investment will boost the company’s turnover to around £1m.
“The amount of products you can print through this machine without having to change the ink appealed to us, and its performance and quality complement our existing in-house digital equipment,” he said.
“We used to outsource a lot of this type of wide-format work whereas we can now keep it in-house and turn it around a lot more quickly.”
Hunstone added the machine would create at least one new position, which will take the company’s headcount up to 10.
The business also looked at alternatives from HP but found the Mutoh device better suited its requirements.
Visual Print & Design began as a print management company but moved into production two years ago after buying a range of digital print and finishing kit including a refurbished Xerox 770 digital colour printer. The firm serves clients including universities and councils.
Last year the company acquired Derby-based digital printer Go Digital, which operates two Konica Minolta digital presses and HP large-format machinery predominantly used to produce posters as well as cutting, folding, creasing and foiling kit.
Hunstone said Go Digital’s sales have increased by around 20% to 30% each month since the acquisition and a fourth member of staff has been taken on.