Prontaprint Walsall has bought an Esko Kongsberg i-XE10 digital cutting table, which rounds off a £400,000 investment programme to refocus the business.
“We wanted something that would give us an edge," said Prontaprint Walsall director Jay Khuttan. "So many printers can print digital and litho, they have similar finishing set-ups too, so we’ve been looking at things that give us a competitive edge in our area and also offer something different to our customers, and also perhaps act as a trade service to other printers."
Khuttan signed for the table at Duplo's London Calling 5i on Wednesday (27 November). The i-XE10 can handle sheets up to 1x1.5m and has a top cutting speed of 80m/min.
Following Khuttan taking on the business in 2007, the West Midlands-based Prontaprint licensee moved from a high-street location three years ago to an industrial unit to fuel its ambitions to become a fully fledged commercial printer.
As part of that strategy, the company installed a refurbished Presstek 34DI in the spring and a Duplo DC-645 slitter-cutter-creaser in the summer.
“We spent three or four years looking at the business and making sure that we serviced the accounts consistently and well, which we have been. And now we’re focused on growing that business and have started approaching blue-chip organisations to demonstrate that we can offer a lot more than they would traditionally associate with a Prontaprint franchise,” said Khuttan.
The business, which has a turnover of more than £300,000, has four full-time staff and a plant list that includes a Roland printer-cutter running Eco-Sol Max inks, a Xerox 700 and a Xerox DocuColor 250.
The Esko Kongsberg was delivered yesterday, direct from the Duplo London Calling 5i event at Somerset House. It will be commissioned next week.
“I first saw the machine at the 2012 London Calling event and I was blown away, because we produce a lot of die-cut work so I know the pain it will relieve,” said Khuttan.
“What we will be able to do is alleviate the issue of people having to get a die made and the finding someone to die-cut the printed material, we will be able to remove all of the associated delays by simply using a supplied digital file on our Esko table, you can have one or a thousand and really open people’s imaginations and add value to the printed sheet.”