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Another Melbourne forme cutter shuts down

Wednesday, 26 July 2017
By Print 21 Online Article

Lot #1: Heidelberg SGS Cylinder Press

Bayswater-based forme cutting supplier Barella has closed up shop after 40 years in business, just weeks after competitor Hygrade Group called in administrators.

Barella Forme Cutting owner Barry Murphy, 73, is retiring from the industry and the company’s machinery and other assets are being auctioned off this week.

“I started up the business in a garage at home making cutting forms about 40 years ago,” says Murphy. “But the market has been shrinking in recent years, with a lot of our clients closing, and we weren’t going to survive in the current climate.”

Murphy blames government policies for contributing to the decline in the market.

“What annoys me is that government policies, going back over many years, are not allowing printing to survive in Australia. Businesses are being told they need to get work manufactured in Australia but then the big companies end up going to print managers who get the work done overseas because it’s cheaper.”

Inspection of the 107 lots on offer will take place today – from 10am-4pm on Wednesday, 26 July – at the Barella premises located at 48 Holloway Drive, Bayswater. The auction, being conducted by Liquid Asset Management, will close on Thursday.

Lot #2: Heidelberg SBB Cylinder Press

The full list of items on sale, including eight cylinders & platens, finishing and forms equipment and vehicles, can be found here.

Last month, leading Melbourne forme cutting company Hygrade Group – which supplied the printing and packaging industry with high quality tooling for over 60 years – closed its doors and went into voluntary administration, with about 50 staff members losing their jobs. Administrators from Pitcher Partners are auctioning off the company’s equipment with Grays online. The auction was scheduled the close yesterday.

Murphy says his immediate plans for retirement including buying a new car.

“My wife wants to drive across the Nullabor and spend a couple of weeks in Esperance and then we’ll come home when we’re ready. But my wife will be doing most of the driving,” he jokes. “That way, I can just look at the scenery.”



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