KEP Print Group ventures into new markets with HP Indigo 5500

By Tim Sheahan, Tuesday 27 January 2009

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KEP Print Group is hoping to open up new markets after making its foray into the variable data arena with an investment in an HP Indigo 5500 digital press.

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The new five-colour machine will handle work that the company wanted to produce at "offset quality" but found too expensive to run on its litho presses.

KEP, a Tamworth-based company, has already secured a new contract with a retail chain to supply promotional materials to 1,700 outlets after taking on the new Indigo.

The printer, which was founded in 1979 as a silkscreen printer, has boosted its digital offering with the 5500, which can print at resolutions up to 800x1200dpi and at speeds of up to 68ppm in full colour mode.

It has been using the Indigo to produce applications such as personalised opening times for pharmacies complete with the name of staff on duty.

Mark Plowman, managing director and founder of the 62-staff company, said the investment was a strategic addition to its kit portfolio allowing it to produce cost-effective work.

He said: "We wanted litho quality combined with the variable data offering and the Indigo does that. It's definitely a growth area for the business and will help us open up new markets."

The new Indigo is housed in the £8m-turnover company's second plant, which it purchased last year to boost its capacity.

Alongside the Indigo, the company runs Manroland 200, 700 and 900 presses at its twin-site 930sqm facility.

Plowman added: "As a business we have always adapted to suit the market. We realised we were missing a trick in terms of variable data printing, so we looked to HP as a market leading supplier to fill the gap."

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