YPP becomes UK's biggest Mimaki house

Max Goldbart
Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Large-format specialist Your Print Partner (YPP) has invested around £500,000 in four new Mimaki dye-sublimation printers, thereby becoming the UK’s biggest Mimaki house.

The large-format Mimaki JV5-320DS machines were installed at YPP’s newly extended 2,600sqm Lincoln premises last week, joining two existing 320DS’s, which were brought in in January as part of a £1.5m investment that also included a premises extension and two other Mimaki machines.

The investment breaks down as around £410,000 for the Mimakis along with £90,000 for a new sewing department and eight new sewing machines, which will be up and running in the next few weeks.

Managing director Stuart Maclaren said the investment was all centred around “bringing manufacturing back to the UK”.

He said: “When I started the company it was always about bringing manufacturing back to the UK. It’s been quite tough, there’s no doubt about it, but we’re winning, we’re bringing more back, we’re also investing heavily in the side of UK manufacturing from training through to buying new equipment, making sure we are the best at what we do.”

The DS machines have mainly been purchased to support the textile printing side of the group, for flags, soft signage, wallpapers, towels and cushions. The 3.2m-wide machine prints on rolls of fabric using water-based inks. It can print at up to 60sqm/hr at a maximum resolution of 540x1,080dpi.

“Everyone says to me why do you need to buy so much kit, but my business model is basically to have multiple machines so that we have that capacity, if something goes wrong with that machine it causes no issues,” added Maclaren. 

“Only 10% of our work is 3.2m-wide but we use them to run multiple jobs next to each other to fill capacity and help speed up production time.”

Maclaren praised YPP and Mimaki's “great working relationship”, having installed its first Mimaki machine six months after the company was formed by the then 21-year-old in 2011. It runs 14 Mimakis overall, along with CAD cutting machines and a Heatsealer 320 rotary press.  

Brett Platt, textile product manager for Mimaki's exclusive UK distributor Hybrid Services, confirmed that YPP now has the largest number of Mimaki printers in the display and signage sector in the UK.

"We are delighted with the recent additional investment in Mimaki grand format printers made by Your Print Partner and the company's commitment to expanding manufacturing in the UK," said Platt. 

The 50-staff group, which includes Santa Sacks, Flag Wizard, Event T's and Your Promo Partner, has sales of around £4m. 

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