Treetop climbs higher with UK-first Versafire EP

By Rhys Handley, Wednesday 12 December 2018

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Treetop Design & Print has become the first UK company to take on the Versafire EP, Heidelberg’s newest high-volume, high-performance digital production press.

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Lovegrove: "Heidelberg has treated us very well over the years"

Delivered in September, the new machine replaced a Linoprint C751 as a full upgrade and enhancement for Treetop's general commercial print services. The Crawley-based business is a Heidelberg house, across both its digital and litho capabilities.

The increased versatility, including the Versafire EP’s capacity for high volumes and shorter runs, will enable Treetop to migrate large amounts of its work from its Speedmaster 52s over to its digital department.

Heidelberg digital equipment business manager Chris Matthews said: “Treetop are being challenged like any other printer, due to run lengths being reduced and the pressure to move over from traditional to digital.

“They were drawn to the Versafire EP because of its versatility, as well as the fact its print quality is greatly improved. We have seen them grow into a Heidelberg house and built a very strong relationship with them that is based on trust. We wish them the greatest success.

“We have now sold a number of further EPs that will be installed over the coming months, with clients drawn in by the product’s flexibility and its extremely attractive cost of ownership. It opens up printers to a wider range of customers.”

First announced in May, the Versafire EP was introduced by Heidelberg as a direct replacement for its CP predecessor. A four-colour machine, it is an OEM of the Ricoh Pro C9200 and aimed at the mid to high end of the market.

Its capabilities include taking a banner size of 1,030mm in duplex and 1,260mm in simplex on substrates up to 450gsm. It can print up to 135ppm in A4, running 4,800x2,400dpi resolution and an automatic inline calibration system maintains colour consistency.

Treetop Design & Print was founded in 1984 by Graham Lovegrove and is now run by his son Will. It has recently bought a neighbouring 185sqm unit to expand its floorspace to 557sqm.

With the Versafire, it will look to split turnover around 80/20% between litho and digital work respectively. Its Heidelberg workflow includes pre-press, cutting, folding and stitching machinery alongside its presses. 

Regarding his new press, Will Lovegrove said: “We did look at other options and print tested the three that were shortlisted but Heidelberg gives us reassurance because with both litho and digital presses we need really good service and support and Heidelberg has treated us very well over the years.”

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