CMA Imaging vice president of sales Mark Sanderson said the new product, CMA Perfect Trans, had been five years in the making.
“We’ve been working on it for a long time – five years ago we tried to replicate a version of RA4 silver halide film, because that’s what all the brands specify for lightboxes,” he said.
Early versions required lamination to achieve the same sort of glossy effect as a Duratran, Sanderson explained. But the advent of HP’s latex inkjet printing technology has proved a breakthrough.
“The key thing was to make a product that looked and felt like a Duratran, but was recyclable. With the new latex printers the gloss level matches our substrate. It looks glossy and continuous – it just looks right.”
CMA has signed up Perfect Colours as UK distributor for the substrate, which was shown on the Perfect Colours stand at Sign & Digital this week.
Perfect Colours markets it as Choice Eco-Tran Backlit Film.
“We’re restricting it to specific dealers worldwide. There’s a finite number of people who understand the marketplace,” Sanderson added.
Clarins has adopted the new film because it wanted a recyclable alternative to the silver halide Duratran-type material it previously specified.
CMA Perfect Trans, printed with HP's water-based latex inks, can be recycled in normal waste streams.
Clarins design and merchandising manager Vicky Barrett said the cosmetics group had improved its environmental impact through the use of the new film, printed on HP latex kit at its print partner ARC in London.
“The solution provides stunning results and is a better fit for our environmental policy,” she said.
All the print for Clarins’ point-of-sales backlit light boxes will now be on the new substrate.
Perfect Colours managing director Jason Burroughs said: “We’re hoping other companies using backlits will switch to this solution.”
As well as the Perfect Trans media, CMA has also developed Perfect Photo as an alternative to photographic paper, and Perfect Adhesive for self-adhesive applications.
Sanderson said the price of Perfect Trans would be around €9/sqm.