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First Panther inkjet label press lands in Aus

Friday, 03 May 2019
By Patrick Howard

Panther in Australia: First customer up and running with Xeikon inkjet

Xeikon is expanding its range of digital presses to include UV inkjet for labels, and the first has landed in Australia. A label converter on the East Coast, whose identity is being kept secret by the company, has already got the first Panther up and running.

Continuing a focus on naming its label presses after big cats, Xeikon has followed the Cheetah CX3 toner machine with the Panther PX3000, its first step into inkjet printing. Long recognised as ‘the other’ high-end digital press manufacturer, Xeikon continues to promote its commercial, carton and label presses as being best in class, now with both toner and inkjet.

Following its purchase of the Jetrion inkjet press from EFI two years ago, Xeikon has embarked on a path to offer upgrades to the existing customer base. As there will be no further development of the Jetrion presses, label converters will be faced with a decision. While continuing service will be maintained for the Jetrions, the arrival of the Panther is designed to reset the conversation about what Xeikon digital label customers will get in the future.

The Panther PX3000 (and the PX2000) is the latest UV inkjet machine to launch into the already crowded digital inkjet label market. With a top speed of 50 m/min it is being promoted as having a high level of image durability, to appeal in particular to health and beauty, industrial chemical, household chemical and industrial markets. The UV inkjet is a major strategic move from Xeikon to expand its offering.

According to Trevor Crowley, the Xeikon manager in ANZ, there’s been plenty of local interest in the Panther. With Labelexpo only five months away, he is expecting to close a couple of extra orders for not just the Panther but the toner presses as well.

“While this is the first here [in Australia], the Panther is going great guns around the world. As more label printers are converting work to digital, it provides them with a viable alternative for shorter runs,” he said.

The first Panther coincides with the latest installation of another Xeikon toner press in Victoria. Again the identity is being kept secret, and while it may be an open secret in the industry, I promised Trevor not to reveal who it is.

With one more installation scheduled for Q2, this brings to 18 the number of Xeikon presses in the local market. It’s still some distance behind the market leader, but with what will soon be press number six installed since February 2017, this is still a respectable number and one that’s now set to grow as Xeikon settles down as a well-financed Flint company.

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