Colourfast Financial has taken on the UK’s first AccurioJet KM-1 from Konica Minolta to drive its new online platform as it increases its focus on commercial work.
Traditionally a financial sector print specialist, the Hutton, Essex-based business began installing the KM-1 in early May and training is due to begin in the next two weeks.
A sheetfed duplex B2 inkjet press, the KM-1 uses UV-cured inks and cool LED lamps that enable it to handle a wide range of substrates, including standard offset stocks or synthetics, with no need for special pre-coatings.
It can also handle cartonboard stocks up to 0.6mm as well as heavily textured or embossed papers.
Colourfast Financial has recently built a 232sqm mezzanine at its premises to accommodate the new machine, taking its total space to 790sqm. The company also operates 12 other Konica Minolta digital production printers, which it uses to produce its work for financial clients.
Managing director Darren Bacon said: “Our previous equipment runs our City work and while we purchased the KM-1 looking at the City work to go onto it, that is not the long-term intention for it. It is versatile and cost-effective and runs 60 grams to 600 microns, which gives us a lot of substrate in the middle.
“The look of a book or whatever you are printing is high quality. For online we are also printing other things, but we need a litho look, which this machine really gives.
“The main thing is, it is easy to operate in changing the paper and it prints on anything from paper to board to plastic.”
The company, which plans to offer bespoke packaging and short-run publishing work using the new press, said it also looked at a number of alternative machines but that the KM-1 best suited its requirements.
“The other inkjet machines that we saw are workhorses – fast, book printing machines, but we were looking for versatility. We can do many different things with the KM-1,” said Bacon.
Alongside an existing EFI H1625 wide-format printer, which was installed last summer, the KM-1 will be used to produce work for Colourfast’s new online commercial offering, getitprinted.com.
Launched around a month ago, the company is now ramping up the platform, which enables customers to order items including business cards, letterheads, flyers, posters and roller banners.
Colourfast Financial turns over around £2.3m and employs 20 staff. Bacon said he is hoping the new kit and online service will double the company’s turnover “in the next one to three years”.