Howard Hunt installs eight Kodak Versamark DH9100s

By Simon Nias, Wednesday 05 December 2012

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Howard Hunt will install eight Kodak Versamark DH9100 printheads next month to wrap up a 3.5m spend that does not include the Kodak Prosper 5000XL installed in early 2011.

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The Dartford-based direct mail printer has invested in substantial additional digital print, finishing and mailing capacity in the past 12 months. However, this does not yet include its Kodak Prosper, which remains a beta install.

Joint managing director Lucy Edwards said:"We love the machine. The speed is great, the quality is great, but it has to work commercially for our clients. Customers have to buy into the price and commercially we’re not there yet."

While the Prosper order remains elusive, Kodak will install the eight new 228mm-wide printheads on one of Howard Hunt’s two offline finishing lines next month.
The printheads will be installed in two blocks of four on an Adphos tower, giving a 900mm-wide duplex overprint capability on reels pre-printed on one of the firm’s four 1,020mm Mitsubishi 16pp webs.

The printheads, which can print 300dpi at 305mpm, will replace four 107mm-wide Scitex heads that Howard Hunt intends to move to its other offline finishing line.

The firm’s digital spend also includes a Xerox iGen 4, while a further investment in inkjet printheads is being considered for its new CMC JWR high speed paper wrap self enclosing machine.This would allow the reel-fed machine to print personalised envelopes on the fly rather than creating them from a pre-printed reel, as is currently the case.

In addition to the self enclosing machine, Howard Hunt has installed three CMC 9000 inline finishing and enclosing machines and a hybrid one piece mailing line.

Howard Hunt also completed the acquisition of a majority stake in £2m-turnover, 30-staff, Bermondsey-based digital agency ORM, in August, and launched a media insight, planning and buying agency, Acuity, in October.

"The launch came about because lots of our clients’ marketing teams are getting smaller and they are having to become experts in different areas and they’re looking to us to support them as much as possible," said Edwards.

"Through Celerity, ORM and Acuity we’re working with clients across their whole marketing strategy and managing the whole campaign, including everything from direct mail, to out of home and TV."

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