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Best of British: Exporting excellence to all corners of the globe

Although New Milton-based collator manufacturer Col-Tec was officially founded in 2000, the origins of the business can be traced back to 1975. That’s when Paul Bailey’s father Mike started making Setmaster collators from his garage and home office in Manchester.

Best of British: Rollem plays its cards right

About half of our Best of British subjects and future candidates have surprisingly long histories. They’ve survived by adapting to the huge changes in technologies, social and economic conditions over the years and still manage to present relevant products to the market.

Best of British: The sky’s not the limit for this exporting superstar

Machines that convert large rolls of material into smaller more manageable rolls may not quite count as the unsung heroes of the industry, but they’re certainly vital and need both precision engineering and some of the latest tech. Who’d have thought that you could use Bluetooth in a slitter?

Best of British: Setting out to make the impossible possible

It’s now exactly 20 years since Graham Harris found a better way to crease paper, although at first he wasn’t sure how to actually make it.

Best of British: Stick with it all the way to the finish

Heanor in Derbyshire is home to Autobond, a 40-year-old family-run company that specialises in high-speed sheet laminators with heavy-duty construction and the latest electronics.

The brains of your printing business

UK printers first started using management information systems (MIS) in the 1980s. At the time the software was pretty rudimentary, recalls Keith McMurtrie, managing director at Tharstern, who describes those early systems as “barely more than a calculator”.

Finishing kit with a kind of magic

The embellishment market is booming at the moment. From spot UV coating through to hot foiling, more and more printers and trade finishers are looking to invest in embellishment technology driven by growing demand from their customers for something different.

At the cutting edge: slicing and dicing at lightspeed

Up until a couple of years ago laser cutting was considered a niche part of the print market. Most printers would send out this intricate finishing work to a handful of specialist laser companies that essentially serviced the entire UK market.

Can paper replace fantastic plastic?

We’re just a month and a half into 2018 and the packaging industry’s sustainability agenda has been firmly set for the forthcoming year – and indeed beyond.

Make finishing touches the first priority

It started with finishing. Commercial printer PCL Digital was looking to win customers by offering more services. Print was well balanced on supply and demand, so managing director Nick Westley-Smith took a post-press tilt. But this was to be no minor tinkering on the fringes of finishing.

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