CS Labels is set to buy the Xeikon CX500 web-fed digital press it has been beta testing since the summer as part of its move into the flexible packaging market.
Having signed on to test the machine at LabelExpo last year, the Wednesfield, Wolverhampton-based operation installed the CX500 in July and has worked with Xeikon to work out the kinks and requirements of the new press ahead of its wide release.
CS Labels will purchase the press at the start of the new year, having secured a six-figure loan from HSBC UK. The press will be used for label printing, although the company also has plans to make it the core of a new digital flexible packaging operation.
Managing director Simon Smith said: “The CX500 represents a completely new platform for us compared to the CX3s we have long made use of. Only two or three have been launched in beta so far and we have worked closely with Xeikon to overcome a number of challenges.
“Our plan is to bring a new solution to the flexible market with our offering of short-run, digitally produced pouches. With all of our equipment, we can do the printing, laminating and converting in-house. This will reduce lead times to between four and six weeks.
“We have won a number of awards for our work over this year, including SME of the year at the PrintWeek Awards and our digital pouches took the digital labels and packaging prize at the FlexoTech Awards. It is busier than ever here now after a rollercoaster year.”
The CX500 joins the CX3 under the Cheetah moniker. It has a web width up to 520mm and full rotary printing speeds of 30m/min with 1,200dpi resolution. Colour capabilities include opaque white and extended gamut using its fifth colour station.
It is onsite at CS Label’s 1,950sqm premises alongside four Xeikon CX3 label printers, as well as two recently-installed Grafisk Maskinfabrik finishing lines, a DC330 and a DC330Mini.
The company moved into its Wednesfield base earlier in the year, having relocated from Willenhall premises covering half the floorspace. With the additional room, Smith said his plan is to take on further printing technology across the new year to further push his business’ new offering.
CS Labels employs 52 members of staff and turns over £5.5m.