Showcard steps up PoS push with Rapida 205

By Josh Brooks, Wednesday 16 May 2007

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Showcard Print is aiming to break into the UKs top three point-of-sale (PoS) printers following an investment programme that includes a move into large-format litho.

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Smith: We will be able to offer every process

The firm, which specialises in large-format print for the high street, is currently installing a four-colour KBA Rapida 205 with coater and is planning further investment to bolster its print capability.

Managing director Jim Fletcher said that the investment was part of a plan to put his firm into the same arena as point-of-sale powerhouses such as Bezier. “In the next three years, we want to grow to become one of the top two or three PoS players,” he said.

Showcard Print’s Letch­worth, Hertfordshire facility has been extended by around 1,000sqm to accommodate
the giant new press, which will be commissioned in July, and staff have already been recruited to run it.

Sales and marketing director Mark Smith said: “The segment that we work in demands better quality and higher-speed production. This means we will be able to offer every process in every size and format.”

When the new press is installed, Showcard, which has a turnover of around £25m and is part of the quoted Havelock Europa group, will join the growing list of large-format firms offering large-format litho.

Competitors already running a KBA Rapida 205 or a MAN Roland 900 include Augustus Martin, Capital Print and Display and St Ives’ SP Group among others. Bezier has also taken the plunge with an order for a KBA Rapida 162 press.

As well as allowing Showcard to bring in-house a small amount of large-format litho work that is currently outsourced, the new press will strengthen an arsenal that already includes a four-colour Thieme screen press, a six-colour B1 Heidelberg sheetfed press and a 3.2m-wide Inca Columbia Turbo digital machine. It also runs a Xerox iGen3 for variable data work.

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