Archive for the ‘Affiliate Article’ Category

  • Superia is Fujifilm 21st century CTP system

    A new Superia range of prepress products  from Fujifilm will help printers adapt to increasing cost and environmental pressures by reducing wastage, emissions, water use, energy use, labour and materials in the offset litho printing sector.

    “Superia is all about doing more with less,” Lindsay Barnes, GM Fujifilm Graphic Systems.

    “Superia is a brand for twenty-first century offset businesses,” says General Manager, Fujifilm Graphic Systems, Lindsay Barnes. “Litho offset is still incredibly strong in global printing but must adapt to cost and environmental pressures to remain viable from the point where digital cuts out due to run length. We believe that the Superia system delivers the right answers in the five key areas where every cent saved counts.”

    The five key areas, says Barnes, are:

    • Saving on materials
    • Saving on labour/man-hours
    • Energy savings
    • Reduction of emissions
    • Reduction of water use

    “Fujifilm’s new Superia range addresses all of these savings with processless and processed CtP plates, low energy-use hardware, press chemistry without IPA, Superia XMF workflow and hybrid screening. Each of these key technologies can contribute towards the printer achieving more stable quality, improved productivity and cost reductions.”

    “Superia is all about doing more with less,” says Barnes, “and that will translate into a reduction in costs.”

    Several Superia products have already proved their worth with Australian offset printers, such as the ZAC low-chemistry system that monitors plate developer replenishment needs, calculates the exact dosage required using advanced sensors and software, and meters out only the precise amount. Printers such as Sydney’s Heroprint, Perth’s Scott Print and Percival Press have experienced chemistry usage savings of up to eighty percent. Heroprint’s Prepress Manager Brad Sampson commented at the time of ramping up the ZAC system: “Immediately, we noticed a remarkable reduction in replenisher chemistry usage and this has been sustained in the first six months of using the ZAC Lo-Chem system. In tandem with this, our water usage has plummeted, and yet we are making more plates.”

    Within the Fujifilm prepress product range, those that make contributions towards the Superia philosophy will bear the Superia brand name, a brand that Fujifilm has readopted from its popular camera-film range used more than 10 years ago.

    “Superia is a total solution,” says Barnes, “and the thrill of it all is that we can look back at customers who have converted or upgraded to Superia, and clearly demonstrate measured cost savings that any finance manager or business owner would be very pleased with.”

    For more information, visit


  • DES Seiko ColorPainter M64s

    First time showing of the Seiko wide format on the DES stand attracted plenty of attention at PrintEx and won for itself a Hot Pick award.

    Promoted by DES as the fastest usable eco-solvent printer in the world, the Seiko ColorPainter M-64s also prints with rich glossy colours, media flexibility and low running costs, all in a wide format printer with unmatched reliability.

    Recognising technology excellence. (l to r) DES new Victorian state manager Peter Way, Patrick Howard (Print21), and DES sales director Russell Cavenagh.

    The Seiko ColorPainter M-64s is a flexible, reliable, high performance wide-format printer featuring better colour density and details at high speeds. The combination of high-viscosity inks and  advanced printheads produce vivid images.

    According to Peter Way, DES Victorian manager, one of the virtues of the ColorPainter is its reliability. “You can just let it run, it’s user-friendly. People can run it unattended all night. Not many machines you can that with.”

    He is backed up by Russell Cavenagh, sales director, who describes the ColorPainter as ” the professional’s choice for wide format. It’s fast, it’s simple to operate and the colours are brilliant,” he said.

    The ColorPainter M64s on the DES stand at PrintEx is high performance 64 inch (1626mm) machine utilizing a combination of high-viscosity inks and advanced printheads to produce razor sharp, crisp images.

    It is a productive combination of advanced engineering that uses Seiko’s own SX inks to deliver stunning colour density while keeping solvent odour to a minimum. SX inks boast excellent outdoor durability without lamination and the fine pedigree from previous generation Seiko printers means that the M-64s is still leader of the pack for backlit sign production.

    More Details In Dark Areas, Better Backlit Graphics

    Our high density inks use less carriers and more pigments, so each dot is more crisp – providing better clarity and detail.

    The world’s first solvent-based fluorescent inks

    The neon inks, the world’s first solvent-based fluorescent inks for wide format inkjet printers, vastly expand the application of the ColorPainter W series. The neon inks are available in two colors, Neon Yellow and Neon Pink, which are used in combination with the ColorPainter GX ink set. The neon inks can be printed not only as “Spot colors”, but also as part of traditional CMYK “Process color”. Mixing those two colors with other colors also gives fluorescent effect to the other colors, creating a wide range of interesting and unique output possibilities.

    The printed image has eye catching vividness under the normal lighting and it glows under black lighting, so they are suitable for various eye catching indoor*2 applications.

  • PIAA launches business succession plan survey

    The age of industry business and the succession plans of their owners is the subject of a snapshot survey from the Printing Industries Association of Australia (Printing Industries).

    The new survey forms part of the Association’s succession planning and industry exit strategy options currently being developed.

    Printing Industries National Manager for Policy and Government Affairs, Hagop Tchamkertenian (pictured), said the 90 second survey was part of research on industry business demographics, in particular the age of businesses and the extent of related succession planning.

    “We are seeking data on the degree of family ownerships, their business sectors and the age at which owners believe they may want to pass their business on,” he said.

    “It is also important to know whether or not they currently have a succession plan in place.”

    The survey is open until Friday 5 July 2013 and can be accessed via this link.

  • Cash-flow dries up for local printers

    A majority of the Australian print businesses included in the latest Printing Industries trends survey reported a shift into negative cash-flow territory, with average debtor days outstripping average creditor days for the quarter ending March 2013, according to the Printing Industries Association of Australia’s (Printing Industries) Printing Industry Trends Survey Report for the March quarter.

    The report found that the average debtor days (the time in which cash is collected from debtors) among respondents stood at 52 days, outstripping the average creditor time-frames (the number of days allowed by creditors within which to pay off debts), which stood at 40 days – implying an underlying industry cash-flow gap of 12 days.

    A number of large suppliers in the local printing landscape moved to tighten their credit terms with customers during the March quarter following the GEON collapse in February. While not suggested by Printing Industries in the report, this shift in the local industry could have contributed substantially to the first quarter cash-flow gap indicated in the survey.

    According to the report, the majority – 57 per cent – of respondents indicated they had experienced negative cash-flow for the March quarter, with only 15.9 per cent reporting a positive cash-flow for the period. Meanwhile, 27.1 per cent of companies reported a cash-flow neutral quarter.

    The release of the latest issue of the report for the March 2013 quarter confirms trading conditions in the printing and associated industries remained challenging.

    Hagop Tchamkertenian (pictured), Printing Industries National Manager for Policy and Government Affairs, said that the March quarter outcomes represent the twenty-first consecutive quarter where reported industry outcomes came in below expected outcomes for a number of key economic indicators. 

    The survey respondents reported net balance reductions in a number of pivotal industry indicators including production, orders, sales, selling prices, net profits, employment and overtime.

    It was also reported that both labour and finance was harder to obtain and there was an increase in the number of outstanding debtors. Cost pressures while present during the quarter with reported increases in wages and material costs continued their moderating trend.

    Some 91.7 per cent of survey respondents ranked ‘lack of orders’ as the primary barrier to increasing production levels, an outcome that is higher than the 86.7 per cent proportion reported during March quarter 2012.

    Despite these findings, the report also found that printing industry respondents are remaining positive about future economic prospects with a greater proportion of industry respondents expecting improvements to take place in general business conditions relative to those expecting deterioration, this, despite another quarter dominated by soft trading conditions.

    On the pivotal industry indicator of capacity utilisation rates, the March quarter results shows that 59.6 per cent of respondents were operating at capacity/activity levels of 70.0 per cent or over, an outcome that is higher than the 54.3 per cent of respondents who reported for the same period a year earlier.

    Tchamkertenian suggests that, over the outlook period, industry respondents are forecasting modest net balance improvements to take place in a number of pivotal economic indicators. Based on these forecasts the June 2013 quarter is expected to yield net balance improvements in orders, production, sales and net profits.

    Further falls in employment and overtime levels are also being forecast but expectations for investments over the six months to September 2013 in plant and machinery remain strongly positive, in fact, the March 2013 quarter forecasts are the most buoyant since December quarter 2005.

    The forecasts also point to continued but moderating cost pressures with expectations that wages and material costs will rise by lower net balances during the June 2013 quarter.

    For the individual states, the outlook for general business expectations over the next six months remains largely positive with respondents from New South Wales, Victoria, Western Australia and Queensland forecasting improvements on net balance basis, while respondents from South Australia and Tasmania are forecasting deterioration.

    Respondents from Western Australia reported the highest utilisation rates with 80.0 per cent operating at capacity utilisation levels of 70 per cent or more, followed by respondents from South Australia (70.0 per cent), New South Wales (62.2 per cent), Queensland (53.3 per cent), Victoria (53.1 per cent), and Tasmania (40.0 per cent).

    Most individual sectors within the industry are forecasting improvements or no change to take place in general business conditions during the next six months, while respondents form the Trade Binding sector are forecasting deterioration in business conditions. Over the outlook period the most optimistic sectors are Screen Printing, Security Printing and Graphic Arts Machinery and Supplies.

    Relatively higher capacity utilisation/activity levels were reported by the Labels, Folding Cartons, Security Printing, Other Packaging and Paper Converting, and Graphic Arts Machinery and Supplies sectors. However, considerable levels of excess capacity were reported in Trade Binding, Screen Printing, General Promotional and Commercial, and Books, Magazines, Periodicals and Newspapers sectors.

    With most sectors reporting either reduced investments or no change in plant and machinery, reported improvements were confined to the Labels, Books, Magazines, Periodicals and Newspapers, Folding Cartons and Screen Printing sectors during the six months to March 2013.

    With the exception of Trade Binding (forecasting decline), the sectors are forecasting either increased investment in plant and machinery or no change over the six months to September 2013. The most optimistic forecasts are being made by respondents from the Security Printing and Digital Printing sectors.

    Printing Industries suggests that while industry capacity utilisation rates need to lift further to reach more economically sustainable levels, the reported improvement during the March 2013 quarter is nevertheless an encouraging development.

    Long-term employment intentions continue to remain weak especially amongst the larger employers who are responding to challenging trading conditions by becoming more lean and efficient. Moderating cost pressures for materials and wages are also a welcome development in an operating environment characterised by downward pressure on selling prices.

    Tchamkertenian says that while industry forecasts for a range of key indicators remain positive some caution needs to be exercised due to a general poor forecasting record by industry participants over the past five years.

    “The highlight of the March 2013 quarter is that industry respondents remain optimistic about the industry’s future economic prospects as reflected by the positive sentiment concerning both general business conditions and the reported willingness to undertake further investments,” he says. “Following the collapse of some prominent industry participants in recent times, survey respondents are reporting increased activity and opportunities have started to flow their way, and some even expressed hope that it could lead to a turnaround in the sheet-fed market as a consequence.

    “The trend in printing jobs reducing in both quantity and value continued to be a feature of the market during the March quarter. Other respondents cited the high Australian dollar as being an issue by causing the price of imported goods competing with local production to fall, while some attributed the announcement of the federal election as having a negative impact on industry activity” he says.

  • PIAA features SEO expert for webinar series

    The second webinar in the Printing Industries Association of Australia’s webinar series will focus on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and will feature Simon Phillips of DejanSEO, an expert in the field.

    Phillips (pictured) is the general manager at DejanSEO. He is an avid supporter for the development of creative content strategies, viral and social media solutions as part of a holistic online marketing solution.

    Local printing industry players can learn from Phillips’ real world business experience implementing effective SEO strategies, which have produced great returns for the business he has worked with.

    According to Printing Industries, SEO is an integral part of the overall internet marketing mix with the objective of increasing position of a website (or a web page) in the organic search results which creates a higher amount of traffic to a website.

    The second webinar in Printing Industries’ series, ‘Fundamentals of SEO,’ will be held at 1pm Sydney time, on Friday 3 May.

    Registration can be made at

  • ‘Print is Alive’ apprentice competition extended

    The Printing Industries Association of Australia’s ‘Print is Alive‘ competition closing date for apprentices has been extended until Friday 3 May 2013.

    Ian Walz (pictured), Printing Industries’ national program manager of the Association’s Apprenticeship Advisor and Mentoring Program, said the extension was in response to requests for extra time.

    “We appreciate the challenge many apprentices may face who want to present a heavily visual entry on this important topic,” he said. “Apprentices were given options to present their entry in any format including a written essay (maximum 500 words), multimedia such as video/YouTube, a web page, animation, PowerPoint, a brochure, flyer, artwork, poster, photography or other created image.

    “This is not necessarily an easy brief when you have to work and attend courses during a normal week. We believe the extension will help many potential entrants to maximise the quality of their submissions,” he said.

    The winner will receive an expense free trip and accommodation in Melbourne to visit PacPrint and will also be a guest at the National Print Awards dinner presentation.

    Entries should be sent to Ian Walz, Printing Industries Association of Australia, 25 South Parade Auburn, NSW 2144 or emailed to

    Terms and conditions can be downloaded here

  • PIAA takes stock of the industry and its future in new survey

    How the Australian printing industry has changed during the past decade and what it will look like in the future is the focus of a new survey by Printing Industries Association of Australia (Printing Industries).

    The New Business Opportunities Survey aims to identify the factors that have changed the industry during the past decade along those that will define its future.

    Hagop Tchamkertenian (pictured), Printing Industries national manager for Policy and Government Affairs, said that the printing industry was an ever-evolving industry providing change, challenge and opportunity – much of which was identified some 12 years ago in the Printing Industries-driven industry repositioning strategy known as the Print21 Action Agenda (industry plan).

    To assess how the industry is managing change, we initially developed the on-line survey last year to capture the changing industry dynamics over the past decade, but we need to continue to ask the important questions as change accelerates,” said Tchamkertenian. “It’s important that business understand the factors that are changing the course of the industry and providing new opportunities as well as challenges.

    “We need to know how the industry is coping, how it is adapting and where it sees its future so that we can provide the resources and information necessary for companies to function effectively in challenging times.

    “Equally important, the industry needs to know how it is performing overall and dealing with change and where the opportunities for growth lie, because there are many new opportunities, but they often mean significant change away from the traditional view of how customer needs are met,” he said.

    Tchamkertenian said the survey is now being undertaken on an annual basis.

    “It looks at what is being done by companies to restructure their businesses, asks about their understanding and perceptions of change,” he said, “whether their service offerings have changed and whether they have implemented web-top-print solutions.

    “It seeks comment on multi-channel marketing, social media and web to print; and services and processes such as QR codes, 3D printing, and functional printing and whether these are perceived as offering exciting opportunities,” he said.

    The survey will be open until Friday 26 April 2013 and can be accessed via this link: New Business Opportunities Survey

  • Last chance for ‘Print is Alive’ apprentice competition

    Industry apprentices have until 19 April to finalise their entries in the ‘Print is Alive’ competition that could see them enhance their career prospects and win an expense free trip to Australia’s largest printing industry exhibition, PacPrint 2013.

    Printing Industries Association of Australia is running the Print is Alive promotion to encourage apprentices to become advocates for the industry and to use their talents to communicate the theme via any of a variety of mediums.

    National Program Manager of the Association’s Apprenticeship Advisor and Mentoring Program, Ian Walz (pictured), said that the message that Print is Alive was not restricted to any format and could be delivered as a written essay (maximum 500 words), multimedia such as video/YouTube, a web page, animation, PowerPoint, a brochure, flyer, artwork, poster, photography or other created image.

    “We want the apprentices to communicate the message with the medium they are comfortable with and believe to be the most effective for this theme,” he said.

    The winner would be flown to Melbourne from their home state (if outside of Victoria) or transported locally and accommodated overnight for 1-2 nights as necessary.

    They would also receive:

    • A guided tour of PacPrint by their Mentor on 24 May 2013
    • Lunch while attending PacPrint.
    • A Ticket to attend the National Print Awards Presentation Dinner on Friday 24 May.
    • Out of pocket expenses.

    “The winning entry will be displayed on the Printing Industries PacPrint stand, number 1618, from 21 May. The stand will also feature mentor staff available to discuss how our program can assist apprentices or help company managers to recruit apprentices,” Mr Walz said.

    Entries should be sent to Ian Walz, Printing Industries Association of Australia, 25 South Parade Auburn, NSW 2144 or emailed to

    Terms and Conditions are available from the

  • Richard Rasmussen’s Market Watch – March 2013

    Ascent Partners’ Richard Rasmussen, wraps up the tumultuous month of March in the local printing industry, with an overview of all the reported industry happenings including mergers, acquisitions and closures, as well as the latest major equipment installations and sales.

    I said last month, that if there was a bigger news month in the industry, I’d like to know about (and no one rang). Well this month almost surpassed it.

    The news is obviously headed by Geon. Following the February “receivership” announcement, in March it was announced:

    • Geon Bankstown (NSW) – sold to Bluestar
    • Geon (Mount Waverley) – sold to Bluestar
    • Geon NZ – sold to Bluestar NZ
    • Geon Labels (NZ) – sold to Bluestar NZ
    • Geon WA – Management Buyout
    • Geon TAS – Sold to Todisco family
    • Geon ACT – sold to Opus
    • (Geon QLD – was closed completely in Feb)

    There was also an update on the Vega Press receivership – they are estimated to owe around  $6.7 million, and with CPS, their administration left an estimated shortfall of $2.5 million.

    Another large Melbourne Printer, BPA, also fell into the hands of the receivers in March.

    What may have slid under the radar screen was the liquidation of End Print Solutions (NSW), Australian Print Solutions (VIC), Print Media and Publishing Group (NSW) and Kwik Kopy South Melbourne (VIC).

    During the month we also saw Snap Perth announced as the purchasers of Snap Kalgoorlie.

    On the supplier side:

    • The PIA and GASAA (GASA) tied the knot and formally merged.
    • Roland DG opened a new manufacturing facility in Thailand
    • Canon started to build its new Sydney Headquarters
    • Kodak moved closer to its Chapter 11 exit.

    Major Equipment Sales and Installs:

    Two of the major Digital players made some installation announcements:

    • HP – Pemara (VIC) installed a new Indigo WS 6600 and Courtney Colour installed the region’s first B2 Indigo 10,000.
    • Xerox – Sold an I Gen 4 EXP to Lotsa Printing (QLD) and installed an I Gen 4 at Kingswood Press (QLD).

    Ricoh also announced the sale of a Ricoh Pro C901 to Industrial Printing Company (NSW).

    PMP has also installed a in their WA Print and Distribution centre, a Ferag  / In –Log mailroom system.

    Roland DG rounded out the equipment stories with a Solijet 4 XR – 640 installation at DPod in Wellington.

    Market Watch / Businesses for Sale.

    For more details on these and other stories, please visit the Market Watch page on our website, Here you can subscribe to the bulletin or download a PDF.

    On this site you will also find seven print related businesses we have on the market.  We have plenty of enquiries coming in for specific Australian businesses wanted, so please contact us if you are looking to sell or wanting your business appraised.


  • Printing Industries survey investigates Carbon Tax impact

    A survey seeking to quantify the impact of the Carbon Tax on printing industry business has been launched by Printing Industries.

    Results from the survey will be used as part of Printing Industries industry advocacy efforts with politicians and senior policy makers in government.

    Printing Industries National Manager, Policy and Government Affairs, Hagop Tchamkertenian, said the survey results were an important part of an on-going campaign to find ways of minimising the impact of the tax on businesses.

    ”The greater the participation and comments we can get on this issue, the more effective our lobbying can be on behalf of the industry,” said Tchamkertenian (pictured).

    “With the Price on Carbon or Carbon Tax as it is better known, now operating for some eight months, sufficient time has past to make an assessment of the impact of this interim tax on businesses operating in the printing and associated industries until the planned introduction of an Emissions Trading Scheme in 2015,” he said.

    The short survey asks seeks information on the financial impact bon companies covering employment, productivity, sales and profitability. It also asks whether companies absorbed the tax or passed it onto to clients in part or fully.

    The survey can be accessed via this link Printing Industries Carbon Tax Impact Survey and closes on Friday 5 April 2013

  • Julia Morris brings the laughs to NSW PICAs

    Get your giggle on at this year’s NSW PICAs with one of Australia’s most loved comedians, Julia Morris, who is back to host this year’s awards night in Sydney on 2 November.

    The straight talking queen of comedy has become one of Australia’s most popular entertainers since appearing at last year’s PICA event and then winning the Celebrity Apprentice reality TV show. Following that success she scoring a leading role in the new Channel Nine Sunday night dramedy (drama, comedy) House Husbands.

    Printing Industries national Director, communications and Marketing, Joe Kowalewski, says Julia’s television success has led to a flood of work offers.

    “Having her MC our 2012 awards is quite a coup as she is incredibly busy with television and theatre commitments,” he says. “But true to her down to earth persona, she enjoyed our presentation dinner last year and is looking forward to working with us again this year in spite of being in huge demand both in Australia and overseas.”

    The presentation night will be held in the Parkside Ballroom at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre, Darling Harbour from 6.30pm on 2 November.

    Themed the Power of Print, it will also feature an exhibition of winning entries along with the presentation of 33 Print Category winners, Business Category winners, the Printer of the Year award, Long-term membership awards and the new Media Super Future Leaders Award.

    Ticket booking forms can be downloaded here. Inquiries to Mark Tolentino on 8789 7388 e-mail:

  • Market Watch – September 2012

    Ascent Partners’ Richard Rasmussen looks at all the major mergers, acquisitions, administrations, installations and sales in the local printing industry for the month of September.

    The administrations continued in the month of September, with the largest being Tasmanian forestry group Gunns, who went into voluntary administration after the banks pulled their funding. That puts around 600 jobs at risk, and raises a big question mark against its (AU)$2 billion Bell Bay pulp mill investment. In FY 2012 Gunns made a $904 million loss.

    Other administrations included Printworld International, a print management firm in NSW, Printmode, an A2 commercial printer in Melbourne, and Kea Print (NSW) who went into liquidation. Allprint & Packaging in QLD is due to have a creditor’s meeting for voluntary creditor’s liquidations early in October.

    CBD Printing in Sydney fell into voluntary administration earlier in the month, with a later announcement stating that the four Snap centres under the group had been purchased by former chief executive, Richard Cook.

    On the acquisition front, the major news was that a German media company, Bauer Media Group, purchased ACP Magazines for around $500 million.

    A merger was announced between Melbourne digital printer, Docucopy, and long standing commercial offset Printer, Troedel. This merger will create a $6 million turnover business.

    Fairfax also announced during the month that they were planning to build a new press hall in their North Richmond premises.

    Major equipment sales and installs

    Perhaps the biggest news of the month was Southern Colour’s (Vic) purchase of two Heidelberg XL 106 presses, a ten-colour perfector and six colour and coater to replace two four year old XL presses.

    Also on the offset side came the announcement of a KBA 105 six colour press installed at Labelcraft in NSW.

    After a fire swept through it in February, Special Binding Service in QLD, made perhaps the largest bindery investment for many  years, announcing it had purchased:

    • Two Kolbus perfect binders
    • Two MBO folders
    • An Meccanotecnica Aster Sewing machine
    • Two guillotines with joggers and unloaders
    • And other ancillary bindery equipment.

    Gallus had success with installations of its ECS 340 Label Press at Dragon Print (NSW) and Impact Labels (QLD).

    Other sales / installations included:

    • Fineline Printing (Vic) installed a Kodak Nexpress
    • Prologica (Vic) installed an Oce Arizona double bed 550 XT
    • Central Imaging Technolgies (QLD) installed an Agfa Anapura M2540 digital flat bed
    • Discus (WA) installed the Jeti 3020 wide format press.

    Businesses on the market

    We have six print related businesses on the market in VIC, NSW and QLD covering a wide cross section of the industry – details can be found on our web site,

    Market Watch

    For further information on past month’s stories, see our Market Watch web page,, or subscribe (FOC) to our monthly bulletin.

  • ACT Manufacturing hit by funding cuts – PIAA

    The Federal Government’s supposed commitment to the manufacturing Industry is coming under the spotlight with the announcement this week of a five per cent reduction in print spending under budget cuts announced by Penny Wong, Minister for Finance and Deregulation.

    In response to the budget cut, Printing Industries is writing to the Government outlining the likely impact of the proposed changes on the industry. The association will also seek to have the Printing Industry Ministerial Working Group used as a vehicle to monitor decisions relating to any cuts.

    Bll Healey (pictured), Printing Industries CEO, says the industry believed that today’s announcement merely continued the past practice of Government’s targeting easy areas when it needed to reduce expenditure. 

    “While government dollars may need to be saved, greater effort is now required for it to be done in a way that does not inject further pain on struggling small business operators,” says Healey.

    According to Healey, printing, like most other areas of the manufacturing industry, is facing enormous challenges as it deals with a high Australian dollar, shrinking margins and increased competition through the emergence of a multi-channel communication world. He says that there appeared to be a disconnect between today’s announcement and the Government’s long-term support for local business.

    “It remains unclear how the figure was determined and where the cuts will be focussed,” he says. “However it is estimated that a significant proportion of the $6 million in cuts will be borne by printers in Canberra based on the high level of work they do for Commonwealth Agencies.”

    Healey also says that initial estimates suggested that over 50 full time jobs were at risk in the ACT alone. “The Government needs to understand that print intrinsically remains the preferred communication medium for many Australians,” he says. “If cuts are required then they should be linked to a more holistic review of the broad spend on Government communications rather than a narrow focus on one sector.”

    Printing Industries says it believes the Government could not ignore the environmental costs of moving to greater on-line delivery.

    “People don’t realise that in a multimedia world, print and paper will continue to be the sustainable way to communicate. By contrast some 234 million items of e-waste, a figure rapidly growing, end up in landfill in Australia each year,” says Healey. “Electronic waste is now the fastest growing component of the municipal waste stream.”


  • Market Watch – July / August 2012.

    If you thought there was an end in sight to the ongoing industry consolidation, think again, as Ascent Partners’ Richard Rasmussen highlights the industry’s biggest consolidations.

    Blue Star, having fielded offers on their business, decided to engage Goldman Sachs to sell its business. That was announced on 24 August, so we all wait on next developments.  One component is already in the process of being sold, Rapid Labels (NZ) to the Tiri Group.

    PMP also announced it cut TMA from the process of conducting further due diligence on its business because of lack of proof of its financial wherewithal.  TMA later announced they were going to open a factory in the Philippines and then PMP announced a 25% cut to their web press fleet. Whether these two later events are related to first is unknown.


    There were plenty of announcements in the first two months of FY 13:

    • Amcor buys Wayne Richardson Sales
    • Lorimer (VIC) buys Gumming and Varnishing Sales
    • CCL Labels buys Graphitype Printing Services’ pharma business (NSW) for $7 million
    • Champ purchases Eye for $120 million plus
    • Paperlinx buys Canterbury Packaging (NZ)
    • Brand Print Australia buys Visibility Event Signage
    • Prographica buys McDowell Creative (NSW)
    • Fuji Film buys Salmat’s BPO division for $375 million

    Management Buys Outs (MBO) and Mergers

    There were three MBOs reported – Zip Print (NT), Fineline Printing (VIC) and Doran Printing (VIC), one co – location proposal (McPersons into Vega), and one proposed merger (Good Impressions with Sydney Allen).

    Closures / Creditor’s meetings:

    These included Elephant Print Media VIC (Wound up), Mr Copy NSW (creditor’s meeting), Printergy VIC (Voluntary Administration).

    We also saw Goprint (QLD) announce they intended to close and the training facility / program at RMIT (VIC) was taken over by an independent, CLB Training and Development.


    Here we saw Mathias Bauerle go into administration and a bid by AIP (owners of Mark Andy) to buy Presstek. Weddenrnburn (NZ) announced it would move to larger premises in Mt Wellington, and Anitech is to close its ACT premises.

    Sales and Installation of Equipment.

    There was a substantial volume of major plant sold and installed in the first two months of FY13:

    Offset Presses

    Heidelberg announced it had sold 18 Speedmasters in the last six months, locations undisclosed. KBA advised they have sold large format presses to Labelcraft (VIC) and PMS Lithography (VIC). Komori installed a press at Centurion Print (NZ).


    • Xerox – 800 & 1000 presses installed at  Superprint (NZ), an IGen 4 to Complete Colour (VIC) and another 800 to Meteor Design and Print (NZ)
    • HP – Magnify Media (VIC), a Scitex FB 7600, Discus Digital (WA) an Indigo 7600, and Centurion (NZ) an Indigo 5600
    • Canon / Oce – A1 Instant Printing, a Canon ImagePress C7010VP, and Aust Post (2 x Colourstream 3700).
    • Ricoh, a ProC651 printer was installed at Icon Print (NZ)
    • Lanier, a PROC751 Ex digital printer was installed at Siris Printing (NZ).

    Bindery / Finishing

    • Kolbus – Special Equipment (QLD) ordered two Kolbus Perfect Binders and Hannanprint a third.
    • Special Equipment also ordered 3 new folders, and a sewing machine.
    •  Polar – KW Doggetts purchased a 137N and a 115N
    • Sitma – Future Sources (NSW) purchased a 950 E plastic wrapper
    • Ferag – An Easysert Inserter was sold to Future Sources

    There were other sales and installations reported –see our web site,

    Businesses on the Market

    Ascent Partners have some good size commercial printers on the books along the Southern and Eastern Seaboard. Also we have a couple of smaller ones in Vic and some hopefully about to come on the books around the country. See our web site for further details, where you can also register your interest.

    Next month we resume the first Tuesday of the month’s summary of Market Watch. You can receive the email edition of our monthly bulletin free by subscribing on our web site. This also carries the links to stories as reported in the trade press.

  • Inaugural award showcases industry’s future leaders

    Printing Industries is urging NSW printing companies to nominate their outstanding young employees for a new award recognising leadership qualities within the printing industry.

    The Future Leaders Award, sponsored by Media Super, aims to recognise and reward bright and talented people who through their work, behaviour and attitudes demonstrate a high level of commitment to their vocation and to the industry. NSW joins Victoria in introducing the award as part of a national roll out by Printing Industries.

    Bill Healey (pictured), Printing Industries CEO and NSW general manager, says the winning NSW state candidate would be named during the Employers Mutual 2012 NSW Printing Industries Craftsmanship Awards (PICA) presentation on 2 November.

    “That candidate will then compete against winning candidates from other states for the national title to be held in conjunction with PacPrint in May 2013,” says Healey. “This is another way of demonstrating that, as an industry, we are serious about developing a skilled workforce to meet future industry demand for skilled employee and must work cooperatively to achieve this.

    “We commend Media Super on this initiative which is complementary to our strategic direction on engaging with the young and our recently implemented Apprenticeship Advisor and Mentoring Program.

    “This program engages with young people to encourage them into the industry and to help those already in the industry to complete their training and achieve their vision for a satisfying and rewarding career – and hopefully to become a future leader in the industry,” he says.

    Starting in 2013 the Future Leaders Award will be fully integrated into all the state PICA events. Media Super National Client Relationship Manager, Lisa Collins, says that Media Super was proud to expand its support of the PICA Awards in NSW and to build on a successful print industry partnership.

    “This new award is designed to recognise and reward the most talented young people coming up through the ranks in NSW,” she says. “From printing to graphics and design we have exceptional young people who are committed to excellence and achievement. They are our future industry leaders making a positive contribution in a time of change and transition.

    “NSW has many gifted and talented young designers, printers and production specialists who continue to demonstrate the power of print. At Media Super we strongly believe that it is now time to directly acknowledge the exceptional young people who are making their mark in our industries,” she says.

    Entries for the NSW Future Leaders Award close on Friday 28 September 2012, click here for more information.

  • $800 million for energy efficient upgrades

    The Federal Government has set aside $800 million for companies planning to upgrade their business and increase their energy efficiency as part of its Clean Technology Investment Program – a move Printing Industries says will help save print businesses money and power.

    The program, which is part of the government’s Clean Energy Future Plan, is now open for funding grant submissions from businesses that can demonstrate that their upgrades will improve their energy efficiency.

    The initiative is designed to support Australian manufacturers adjust to a lower carbon economic environment by providing grants to finance investments in energy-efficient capital equipment and low-emitting technologies and processes.

    Hagop Tchamkertenian (pictured), Printing Industries national manager, Policy and Government Affairs, says that businesses proposing to make an investment were not bound to focus only on new technology or processes.

    “Modifications to existing plant, equipment and processes also qualify for funding,” says Tchamkertenian. “The program threshold can be met from energy/fuel used at a single site or across a company’s manufacturing activities in Australia.”

    To be eligible a company must:

    • Use 300,000 kWh of electricity per annum (which equates to 25,000 kWh per month or 75,000 kWh per quarter).

    Based on Printing Industries estimates this equates to:

    • Spending more than $70,000 per annum on electricity (which is about $5,833 per month or $17,499 per quarter).

    Tchamkertenian says that for businesses with a turnover of up to $100 million per annum the grant amount ranges between $25,000 and $500,000 and the applicant needs to match the funding on a 1:1 basis.

    “For business with turnover greater than $100 million grants still range between $25,000 and $500,000 but the applicant to grant funding ratio becomes 2:1,” says Tchamkertenian. “For grant amounts ranging from $500,000 to $10 million the applicant to grant funding ratio remains at 2:1; and for grants of $10 million or more the ratio rises to 3:1.”

    The program will provide grant funding on a competitive, merit-basis until 2017-18.

    Printing Industries members considering an application should contact Hagop Tchamkertenian on (02) 8789 7361 or E-mail:

  • Market Watch FY 2012 – A Year in Review Pt. 5

    Part 5 –Major Equipment sales and installations   

    In this the final part of Ascent Partners Market Watch – FY 12, a year in Review, Richard Rasmussen lists all the reported major machinery sales and installations.

    If ever you wanted proof of the rapid change in our industry, look no further than this list.

    Despite what the doomsayers in our industry spruik, there has been some significant investment in new equipment. What has changed however is the profile of the equipment that has gone into our market – it shows the rise and rise of digital equipment installations – wide format, midsized and high end. With those digital installations comes the corresponding large volume of ancillary bindery equipment. We also see the fairly sparse investment in traditional offset equipment.  High speed inkjet machines are entering the market and there has also been a fair share of CtP devices that have been installed.

    Unfortunately, once again this is not to be seen as a definitive list, as its source is mainly from what has been reported in the trade press. Clearly far greater volumes were sold and installed. The lack of sales and installations from a particular vendor could be a function of them, or their customer, not wanting to have the installation reported. In many instances you will note that the vendor is unable to provide the name of the company where the sale / installation occurred, and only provides the numbers of machines that they have been sold / installed. Obviously we would far sooner name names, but respect the customer’s right to privacy.

    You will note that the following list only relates to SME businesses (or assumed SME businesses). The larger businesses were reported in part 1 of this series – click here to view.

    Assta Label House NSW I ABG Digicon label cutter
    Catalyst Graphics NSW I Agfa Jeti 1224
    Core Print VIC I Agfa Avalon N4 CtP
    Discus Digital Print WA I Agfa Jeti 1224 UV digital Flat bed
    Flow Printing VIC I Agfa Avalon N-8 12S CtP
    Flow Printing VIC I Agfa Avalon N-8 12S CtP
    Oxford Printing NSW I Agfa Jeti 1224
    Tennyson Printing QLD I Agfa VCF 85 processor (chem free)
    VRC QLD I Agfa Avalon CtP
    PDQ Labels NSW I Apex 1290 Digital Press
    Platypus Graphics QLD I Autobond 76 Celloglazer with slitter and auto delivery
    ABC Photosigns Vic / NZ S Canon 2 x Image Press C701VP
    KK Chatswood NSW I Canon C7000VP
    3 x Kwik Kopy stores (as advised by Canon) NSW / VIC I Canon 3 x Image Press CV 7000 VP
    AuzPrint QLD I Canon C6000
    PictureWorks VIC I Canon DreamLabo 5000 AKL I Canon C7000 VP
    WA Printer WA S Cron Platesetter
    Picton WA S Currie and Co Small folder, creaser and guillotine
    Numerous customers (as advised by vendor) Aust / NZ S Duplo 4 x digital booklet makers
    A Better Way to Print QLD I Duplo DC 645 Card Cutter
    Unknown (as reported by EFI) Aust S EFI Vutek QS 2000
    Scribal Group NSW S EFI Rastek H652
    Hannanprint NSW S Ferag UniDrum 440 Gatherer, stitcher, trimmer
    News Ltd WA / QLD S Ferag 2 x SNT 350 Three Knife Trimming drums
    Sony NSW I Fujifilm Acuity HS 3545 flat bed UV digital printer
    Orangebox AKL I GBR GBR 420T Smart feeder, folder
    Magnify Media VIC I GMC Wide format workflow / colour system
    Hosking Envelopes Aust S Halmes 4 x re-manufactured envelope printers
    Bambra Vic I Heidelberg XL 75-12 colour offset
    AMR Hewitt VIC S Heidelberg Dymatrix 113 diecutter
    CJ King WA S Heidelberg SM 74-8 -P
    JP Printing VIC S Heidelberg SX 52 and SM 52-5
    Snap Perth Hub WA I Heidelberg SM 52-4 Anicolor
    Various (as advised by Heidelberg) Aust NZ S Heidelberg 4 x A1 presses (36 print units in Apr to Dec 11)
    Various (as advised by Heidelberg) Aust NZ S Heidelberg 4 x A2 presses (23 print units in Apr to Dec 11)
    Various (as advised by Heidelberg) Aust NZ S Heidelberg 4 x A3 presses (20 print units in Apr to Dec 11)
    Various (as advised by Heidelberg) Aust NZ S Heidelberg /Kodak CtP – 13 devices (9 HD, 4 Kodak in Apr to Dec 11)
    Eastern Press VIC S Heidelberg XL 75 – 5 +L
    McHargs CHC I Horizon BQ470 PUR+EVA perfect binder
    McHargs Horizon SPF 200A
    Broderick Printing and Design AKL NZ I Horizon Stitchliner
    Crystal Print WA S Horizon Stitching line
    Dieline AKL NZ I Horizon AFC 566 folder, BQ 270 binder, SPF 200A collate, stitch, trim
    Maroondah Printing VIC I Horizon Collate, stitch and trim
    Various (as advised by Curries) S Horizon 3 x AFC 566 FC cross folders
    Various(as advised by Curries) S Horizon 2 x Stitchmasters
    Who Printing NSW I Horizon BQ 470
    Assta Label House NSW I HP Indigo WS4500
    Image Source WA I HP DJ L65500 Latex wide format
    RMIT VIC I HP Designjet Z6200
    Sabre Signs Cch I HP Scitex FB 700 / Designjet L25500
    Bokay Group WA S HP Scitex FB7600 Digital Press
    Briner Total Signage Solutions VIC I HP Scitex LX 800 printer
    Colemans Printing NT I HP 2 x Indigo 5500
    Digi we doo SA S HP Indigo 7500
    Digimen Townsville QLD I HP Scitex FB500 UV Flatbed Printer
    Discus WA I HP Indigo 5000
    Lotsa QLD I HP 26500 Wide Format (Latex)
    Magnify Media WA S HP Scitex FB 7600
    Momento Pro NSW I HP Indigo 7500
    Pilpel Print WA I HP Indigo
    PMG NSW S HP Indigo 7500
    PMI Corp VIC I HP Indigo 7500
    Pressprint AKL NZ I HP Indigo 3550
    Spice Digital Imaging WA I HP Super wide Designjet L28500
    Various (as advised by HP) Aust / NZ S HP 4 Plus 1000 presses
    SEMA NSW /VIC I/S Impika iPrint eVolution press x 2
    GSP NSW I Inca Onset S20 digital flatbed printer
    Retail Communications Vic I Inca Onset S20 high end flat bed
    Aust Customer Aust S KBA 105 – 5 plus coater
    Print Counsel AKL I KBA Genius 52 UV
    Kirk ?? S Kodak Flexcel NX wide flexo
    Kirk Vic I Kodak Flexcel NX wide system
    BDR Max AKL I Konica Minolta Bizhub C7000
    Numberous customers Vic S Konica Minolta Digital Machines
    Pure Colours NSW I Konica Minolta Biz Hub 8000
    Unitec NZ I Konica Minolta and Oce Suppliers of a new range of digital printers
    LabelForce WA I Mark Andy P5 – 8 colour Flexo press
    Marvel Bookbinding VIC I MBO T 800 Perfection folder
    M&N Graphics NSW I MBO T535.4.4.F folder
    Dragon Printing ?? S Memjet Speedstar label printer
    MailEzy QLD I Memjet Envelope printer
    Print Rite NSW S Memjet Speedstar label printer
    Christchurch Digital Print Co-operative CH I Mogana DocuMaster Pro Booklet maker
    ABC Photosigns AKL I Morgana Digifold Pro
    Kwik Kopy Norwood SA I Morgana Documaster and DigiFold Pro
    Lotsa QLD I Morgana DigiFold
    Griffin Press SA I Muller Martini SigmaLine
    Brisbane City Council QLD I Oce Colourwave 600 Wide Format
    Briter VIC I Oce Arizona 360GT Flatbed
    Slimbox NSW I Oce Arizona 360XT Wide Format
    On Demand VIC I Oce Colourstream 3500
    Pageset VIC I Oce Arizona 550 GT and Pro Cut
    St. Lawrence College QLD S Oce Manage print facility
    Trannys NSW I Oce Arizona 550 GT UV
    Various, as advised by Heidelberg Aust / NZ S Polar 30 x Polar orders             (April – Sept 11)
    Excel Digital NZ S Polar 80SE
    Various Aust NZ S Polar 38 machines (Apr – Dec 11)
    Publications Perspective VIC I Presstek 34 DI press (Used)
    Redworks Ogilvy NZ I Ricoh 2 x Pro 651 EX
    Armadale Council WA I Ricoh Pro C900 + finishing
    Kwik Kopy WA I Ricoh C901 and 1357EX
    Snap Northwest NSW I Ricoh Pro C901
    Eye Tonic NSW I Roland VersaUV LEJ-640
    Frontline Printing Syd I Roland DG LEJ 640, UV flatbed
    Imprimerie STP Multipress Tahiti I Roland 700 Hi Print
    Unknown (as reported by Roland DG) Aust S Roland DG 8 x Versa wide format
    Unknown (as reported by Roland DG) Aust S Roland DG LEJ 640 Hybrid UV inkjet
    Kalamazoo AKL I Ryobi 920-10 colour offset
    Kalamazoo CHC NZ I Ryobi 955D and 925D Offset presses
    PMS VIC I Ryobi Ryobi 925
    Catus Imaging NSW I Scitex XP 5300
    Omnigraphics Akl I Scitex XP 2300
    Graphic Glass WA I Screen Trupress Jet 2500UV
    Mega Colour NSW S Screen PlateRite 8900 CtP
    Metro Press  WA I Screen Platewrite 4300E CtP
    Queensland customer (as reported by Screen) QLD S Screen Truepress Jet 520
    Various (as reported by Heidelberg) Aust NZ S Stahl 7 machines sold                (Apr – Dec 11)
    CMYK Hub QLD S Stahl Ti 52 Folder
    Benefitz AKL I Tekcel Wide format router
    Photobook Shop VIC I UniBind Casemaker 750A
    GSP NSW I Uvistar 5032 4 colour grand format UV
    Press Print Solutions Vic I Watkiss DFS booklet machine
    Immij VIC I Xerox 800/1000 press
    Xtreem VIC I Xerox I Gen 4 EXP
    2 x Customers (as reported by Xerox) Aust S Xerox 2 x Nuvera 200 EA Perfectors
    Kalamazoo WEL S Xerox 2 x 2800 Inkjet Colour continuous feed printers
    Print Storm NSW I Xerox 1000 Press
    SEMA NSW S Xerox iPrint 75 x 2
    Snap Mackay QLD I Xerox 800 Press
    Various (as reported by Xerox) Aust S Xerox 60 x 800/1000 Digital image presses sold in region in past 12 months
    Worldwide – Market Street QLD I Xerox 800

    The above list was developed after the collation of data from Ascent Partners monthly Market Watch Bulletin. This bulletin is available on the free subscription basis from their web site,

    Next week we will issue Market Watch for the first two months of this financial year. We’re sure you won’t be surprised by the continued consolidation and investment in the industry.