Archive for August, 2010

  • Time running out for NSW Print Award entries

    NSW printers have less than two weeks to submit their entries into the WorkCover NSW Printing Industries Craftsmanship Awards (PICA).

    To help with award preparation, a website containing full entry information was launched this week.

    Printing Industries, CEO Philip Andersen, said

    contained entry forms and a full explanation of all categories covering both print excellence and business management.

    “I encourage everyone to carefully check the full range of categories which have been slightly amended this year to reflect the national integration of state PICAs with the National Print Awards,” he said.

    “We have also streamlined our entry forms based on industry feedback to make them easier to follow and complete.

    “It is very important that print award entrants complete all the relevant sections to correctly identify not just the category entered, but also the technical specifications including print, design, prepress, finishing and stock details.

    “Regardless of whether all the processes have been completed by inhouse or by another company, this information should be noted.”

    Andersen said the Business Excellence categories should also be seriously considered by printing companies.

    “These awards cover business innovation, education and training, the environment and Occupational Health and Safety. They are equally as important as the print awards and carry considerable prestige and commercial benefit for companies that can show excellence in any of these areas.

    “They are a point of difference at a time when differentiation increasingly plays an important role in helping many clients decide which organisation have the best credentials to undertake their work,” he said.


  • More gold gongs for Geon at Western Australia PICAs

    Private equity-backed Geon once again triumphs at the PICAs, taking the highest number of golds at the Western Australia awards.

    General manager of Geon WA, Ian Smith, (pictured) told Print21 that there was much excitement from all 54 of the Bassendean-based staff. “Winning 12 awards is great recognition for our team,” he said. “From a business point of view, it demonstrates that across the board our standards are quite high.”

    Smith added that the most pleasing thing for him was that many of the gold winning entries were for difficult categories, such as multi-page books and annual reports. “With these, there is more chance of something being not quite right,” he said.

    The triumph comes after Geon in Moonah took the lion’s share of gold winning entries at the Tasmania PICAs in August. A modest Smith admitted that he never goes into the competition expecting to win.

    “At the end of the day, we submit the entries and just wait and see,” he said. “I never second-guess whether we might or might not win.”

    The African-themed soiree also saw Printing Industries’ national president, Jim Atkinson, and chairman of the Australasian Paper Industry Association (APIA), Bernard Cassell, drive home some of the more serious issues impacting on all of us. There is opportunity for businesses in taking up Lean and Competitive manufacturing and spreading the positive aspects of print in a communications package, was the message they brought to the 2010 Western Australian PICA. 

    The night was a theme of the African savannah with pre-dinner drinks and entertainment by the Akwaaba African Drums and a rather dubious looking man in a safari suit.  Later, Matt Hollywood worked his magic and humour on the crowd with Chairman of PICA, Ian Smith, and with a little of Matt’s help, having the crowd in stiches as he acted out his past life as a miniature magician. 

    Major sponsors Kodak provided the Kodak Coffee Lounge, where guests could network and catch up away from the lively party going on in the BelleVue Ballroom. On display were pictures of PICAs past and memorabilia, which had many saying, “I remember them”.  Kodak also provided each table with a camera so that guests would be able to have pictures of their night at PICA. 

    Pictured: manager Heidelberg WA, Michael Leek with LIA/Heidelberg Graduate of the Year, Jessica Ward, of Sun City Print and Design.

    The Heidelberg Award for PICA WA was once again won by GEON Bassendean for its entry, Beyond the Edge, in the Book Printing Case Bound category.  Geraldton-based apprentice, Jessica Ward (above) of Sun City Print and Design won the LIA-Heidelberg-Graduate of the Year. The last formality of the evening was to award the Kodak 2010 Printing Industry Recognition Award. Kodak’s Gary Hardman presented the award to William (Bill) Holywell. Bill was the founding father of the Perth-based label printers Supa Stik Labels.


  • Strong catalogue growth boosts Salmat results

    Double-digit growth in earnings puts Salmat on the lookout for mergers and acquisitions.

    The communications group reported earnings for the financial year of $91.2 million, up by 17.3 per cent on the previous year, and a net profit after tax figure of $49.1 million, an increase from the $34.5 million in reached the year before. Part of the result came from winning the Coles catlogues distribution from PMP.

    “The results reflect a strong focus on streamlining and consolidating the Salmat business while aligning our suite of services through the One Salmat strategy to drive profitable growth,” said Grant Harrod, (pictured), CEO.

    Accoridng to Harrod, Salmat’s Business Process Outsourcing division performed well with earnings up 7.1 per cent for the financial year. “We expect the decline in mail volumes to slow and have a solid line up of new work to support this,” he said, adding that BPO would look at the possibility of including business colour printing, digitisation, end to end solutions such as accounts payable and other e-solutions.

    This puts the company in a position to move into new markets, such as the small-to-medium enterprise space, reported by Print21 earlier this year, along with the chance to merge with, or acquire other businesses.
    “We expect that merger and acquisition activity will complement our growth strategy in the coming years. Salmat is actively reviewing a number of opportunities to both strengthen our existing services as well as extend our one-to-one communication model,” Harrod told Print21.

    In a statement, Salmat said that it anticipates market conditions remaining “fairly consistent” over the next 12 months, and that clients will continue to seek business solutions that drive revenue and enhance competitive advantage.

  • Supply side should share the journey with customers: James Cryer’s commentary

    It’s time for press manufacturers to work closer with their customers and look further than the next sale, says James Cryer.

    For decades, those few but powerful manufacturers of offset presses have enjoyed a certain asymmetry when negotiating with their print customers – typically small – and scattered around the globe.
    As an industry, do we want that arrangement to continue? As converters, do we have the mechanism to feedback our wish list to the manufacturers?
    The recent seminar, Can you still make money from Print? continues to throw up lessons and observations that I think are well worth exploring. A cocky answer to the question would be, of course, to get out of offset and into digital – but that was probably not the answer the forum was looking for.
    The discussion touched on an interesting, if seldom debated issue: just what is the ideal or most appropriate relationship that should exist between a supplier and its clients, particularly in a close-knit industry such as ours?
    I stress this latter point, because all the major equipment vendors (offset and digital) claim, in one form or another to be partners with their clients, riding the wild tiger of economic fortunes – in good times and in bad. Sharing the pain and the joy, the agony and the ecstasy.
    Well, do they?
    For decades there has been a tight-knit coterie of two or three dominant European press manufacturers, enjoying a virtual oligopoly, supplying presses to the rest of the world – a fragmented market consisting of tens of thousands of small buyers, none of whom has any bargaining power. This has lead to printing companies, instead of setting the pace of reform and innovation, being on the receiving end of a relatively slow rate of technological change.
    Offset presses now, are not vastly dissimilar to their ancestors of 20 years ago – the only real difference being in the electronics and CTP – which innovation did not come from the press manufacturers.
    The Euro press-gang were doing what comes naturally – behaving exactly like any other dominant supplier, when facing an undisciplined rabble – innovate as little as possible and make as much margin as you can. In other words, here was the perfect storm, enabling these massive "press barons" to enjoy huge returns and make super-normal profits.

    The question of over capacity was raised as a possible contributor to our long-term low returns within the offset sector. In fairness, it takes two to tango in a sale: including a willing buyer. But, according to Andy Vels Jensen, you can’t blame the supplier. As he emphatically stated on the night, "If you’re not successful in this industry … it is because of you. Overcapacity … cannot be blamed for you losing money".
    But hang on. Doesn’t over-supply of anything inevitably lead to low returns? 
     How about this for an idea: all of us undisciplined rabble (ie, all printing companies in Australia) go on a press buying strike for a year. No more new presses! Work the existing ones harder, smarter, longer. This would achieve several things: 1) make printing companies instantly more profitable by more intensive use of existing capital, 2) allow capacity to run down, by not adding fresh capital to the mix, and 3) encourage the equipment manufacturers to apply downward pressure on their pricing (hey, cheaper presses!).

    [It would certainly spell the end of the expensive support and service infrastructure that the industry relies on to operate efficiently… ed]
    If the manufacturers aren’t so keen on that idea, here’s another one. De-engineer the presses a bit. Offset presses are typically built like Sherman tanks –built to last a thousand years. They’re the equivalent of heavy rail, built of steel, whereas the trend is to light rail built of aluminium. OK, they’ll fall to bits in a few years, but that’s now quite acceptable as there’ll be new technology just round the corner. And with lower up-front costs they can be written-off quicker anyway. Several Asian/Japanese presses come close to this business model – whether by accident or design is a mute point. But the point is, we have throw-away just-about-everything – why not apply the concept to offset presses? I’ve even got a name for it: light-offset. Or if you don’t like that, offset-light.
    OK, so as a prestige-conscious European press manufacturer, you’re not too keen on that idea, here’s another one. There are various ways to finance a press. More and more, we’re hearing about this mysterious term, the click rate as applied to micky-mouse toys like office copiers, etc.
    If one thinks about it, doesn’t the click rate generate a closer, more genuine bond between supplier and client. Doesn’t it also allow a slightly lower front-end cost, so it’s more appealing to smaller printers? Doesn’t it create a feeling of shared fortunes, ie, if you do better, I do better? And won’t it be the ultimate test of whether a supplier is really prepared to be a partner in fact, or in name only. 
    I have spoken to a few offset equipment suppliers, and in principle, there is no reason why offset suppliers couldn’t adopt some hybrid version of the click rate philosophy. And now that Heidelberg is snuggling up to one of the leading digital manufacturers, Konica-Minolta, it can find out how it works, in more intimate detail.
    So, my challenge to the boardrooms of the big offset press manufacturers is – when are you going to display the ultimate demonstration of good faith in sharing the journey with your clients? Your future challenge is not to sell as many presses as you can, but to make sure each press you sell, is as productive as it can possibly be.
    I suspect that the first offset supplier who introduces an optional click rate pricing model would be on a winner.

  • ***Advertisement: Ascent Partners 1 September 2010***

    Got a question about buying or selling a business? Here’s your chance to ask an expert. Richard Rasmussen of Ascent Partners answers everything you need to know and this week sheds some light on the term “multiple”.

    FAQ 2: In valuing a business, what does “the multiple” mean?

    Answer: The multiple refers to a number that is multiplied by the earnings of a business to derive the value of the business. One of the most common methods to value a printing business is a “multiple of earnings”.

    The “earnings” part is usually derived by the “Earnings Before Interest, Tax, Depreciation and Amortisation” or EBITDA. This EBITDA figure is normalised to allow for abnormal or once off expenses, and also for expenses of a personal nature.

    For example, your EBITDA may show in your accounts as $100,000. But in this period you have had a “once off” factory move costing $50,000, and you’re spouse is working as a bookkeeper 2 days a week and your paying her $60,000 per annum (say the market rate was $15,000 for this type of work). So you would “add back” the $50,000 and the difference between $60,000 and $15,000 to arrive at a normalised EBITDA of $195,000. This is the “earnings” figure you would use.

    Sometimes micro businesses use “PEBITDA” as their earnings measure. The “P” stands for personal, so it is the earnings before they draw a wage or, put another way, the earnings available to the owner. This compares to EBITDA which is derived after a market wage is determined for the owner.

    Once the “earnings” are calculated, you then need to know what number (or multiple) to multiple this figure by, to get the business value. There is no doubt that over the past 2 years these “multiples” have reduced. Part of the reason for this is that there is more risk involved in the purchase of a business in uncertain times, and partly because the market for print has changed.

    Generally speaking the smaller the business, the smaller the “multiple”. The major reason for this is because there is more risk in buying a small business. For example the proprietor of a printing business that turns over say $1,000,000 is likely to be a major part of the business. All the clients deal with him, so the risk is once you take him out, how many customers will remain?

    Larger firms attract higher multiples. Again the reason for this is largely a function of risk. Larger firms by nature will have a management structure in place, so if you remove the owner, not much changes, the clients still deal with their sales person, the infrastructure remains, and it’s business as usual.

    Apart from risk, other items that affect multiple are the market the business operates in (eg a private hardware store’s multiple would have been severely reduced in the past five years by the advent of Bunnings), the clients and the growth potential of those clients, the spread and mix of clients, the systems that are in place, the market value of the equipment, the technology of the equipment and the intellectual property of the company.

    So, back to the example, we have said the normalised EBITDA is $195,000. What multiple do we choose? Well, if the business turned over $2,000,000 and was a general commercial printer, with nothing all that special about it, then the multiple may be between two and three. So, from that, a business value is derived of between $390,000 and $585,000 plus stock at valuation. This would be on the basis that all equipment, except the rented equipment (where the rental would be transferred to the new owner), would be passed on unencumbered. At the time of transaction the norm would be that vendor pay out the staff, and he collects the existing debtors and pays out the creditors.

    Many printers are surprised at the result this valuation technique derives, because in many instances the appraised value is less that the market value of the plant and equipment, or worse still that the net result after paying out loans on plant and equipment, and staff is in fact negative.

    Where the market value of the plant and equipment exceeds the “multiple of earnings” value of the business, then another valuation technique needs to be applied. Effectively the business is worth the equipment value plus a goodwill value.

    I’ll discuss that technique next week.

    To ask Richard a business-related question, contact

    Ascent Partners’ services include the appraisal of printing business. For further information, please contact Richard Rasmussen on 0402 021 101.

  • Queensland printer joins the move to greener printing

    All Clear Printing has become the first Queensland company to successfully complete Sustainable Green Print (SGP) Level 2 certification.

    The company, based in the Brisbane’s inner suburb of Yeronga, was one of the early innovators joining the first Queensland SGP workshops held by Printing Industries in 2009.  

    Company director, Anthony de Stefani, (pictured) said that his company had been independently audited by Compliance Australia and subsequently received SGP Level 2 certification.

    He said All Clear Printing was now aligned with many of the requirements of ISO14001 and was progressing on to SGP Level 3, the fully ISO-aligned certification.

    “We quickly realised our customers’ expectations in the area of environmental management and addressed them early,” he said.

    “SGP accreditation means everyone wins – the environment, our customers, our company and our staff who are elated in knowing they’re doing their bit for the planet.”

  • Online push spells d-day for printed dictionaries

    Australia’s Macquarie Dictionary may follow the Oxford English Dictionary in moving to an online publishing model as the internet cuts into reference publishing.

    The 60 kilogram OED tome of authority is being used more online, leading its publisher, Oxford University Press to consider changing the medium which it is published.

    A statement from the publisher said that: "At present we are experiencing increasing demand for the online product. However, a print version will certainly be considered if there is sufficient demand at the time of publication."

    In an interview, Nigel Portwood, chief executive of Oxford University Press expressed concern over the decline in printed dictionaries. “The print dictionary market is just disappearing. It is falling away by tens of per cent a year," he said.

    Susan Butler, publisher and editor of Australia’s Macquarie Dictionary, told Print21 that the title’s sales have decreased by around one third since the advent of digital publishing. She did not rule out the possibility of it also moving to an online-only mode.

    “I don’t see that day as tomorrow, but possibly the day after,” she said. “All book publishing is gradually moving towards some kind of digital form, whether it is via an e-reader or internet delivery.”

    Butler does not necessarily see this as a bad thing. “A dictionary online has possibilities that are far wider than can be encompassed in the printed book,” she said.

    “There is an immediate relaxation on the constraints of print, which had been becoming tighter as paper gradually increased in cost.”

    Yet, the thought of the dictionary ceasing to exist on paper all together is too strong a call, Butler added. “There will always be a place for the most prestigious form of the dictionary as a book,” she said.

    “As a record of the language, it is much more visible in this form. The computer is almost too direct – it takes you to exactly where you wanted to go – there is less serendipity and less browse-ability.”


  • All the winners: Western Australia PICAs

    Western Australia’s top printers for 2010 are all here. Are you one of them?

    Heidelberg Award


    LIA Heidelberg Graduate of the Year

    Jessica Ward, Sun City Print and Design

    Gold winners:
    Company: Clarity Print Image
    Category: Embellishment
    Company: Fast Finishing Services and Classic Bookbinders
    Category: Finishing
    Company: GEON Bassendean
    Categories: Specialty or Special Printing including Innovation
    Self Promotion
    Book printing; offset
    Book printing; offset
    Presentation Folders, Programs and Menus
    Leaflets/Folded Leaflets
    Folding Cartons, Boxes
    Stationery – single item
    Annual Report
    Catalogues, Brochures and Magazines
    Saddle-Stitched Booklets, Catalogues, Brochures

    Company: Illustrations Pty Ltd
    Category: Digital Printing
    Company: Imatec Digital Print
    Category: Digital Printing
    Company: Label World WA
    Categories: Labels Roll fed wine and beverage
    Labels Offset – Roll fed
    Labels Roll fed

    Pictured: Labelworld  WA production manager, Myles O’Neill, who won three awards on the night.
    Company: Lamb Print
    Category: Posters/ Art Reproduction
    Company: Parmelia Print
    Category: Impact/Sensory Mail
    Company: Percival Print and Packaging
    Categories: Postcards and Greetings

    Company: PICA WA
    Category: Impact/Sensory Mail
    Company: Pilpel Print
    Categories: Catalogues, Brochures and Magazines
    One, two or three-colour printing – any format
    Stationery – Sets

    Company: PMP Print
    Categories: Direct Mail and Promotional
    Newspaper Inserts – web fed
    Direct Mail and Promotional

    Company: Scott Print
    Categories: Calendars
    Saddle-stitched Booklets Catalogues, Brochures
    Book Printing, offset
    Presentation Folders, Programs and Menus
    Saddle-stitched booklets catalogues, brochures
    Book printing, digital

    Company: Screen Print West
    Category: Small Business Award
    Company: West Australian Newspapers
    Category: Newspaper Inserts web fed, cold set

  • Candidate of the week – Graphic Designer/Pre-Press, Sydney

    Career Overview
    A Graphic Designer worked in Signage Company for two months as part time
    employee. I have worked as a Trainee Pre Press Trade Person for one year. I have recently completed Diploma of Printing and Graphic Arts (Multimedia) and seeking for professional challenges. I will be available full time.

    Key Strengths
    * Highly Computer Skills including Adobe CS3, CS4, Word, Power point.
    * One year training plus experience in Designing Industry.
    * Good Communication Skills on phone or face to face.

    Career History

    Graphic Designer
    Signon Signs Pty Ltd
    This company Design and print signs on vehicle, Large Banners, Light Box and provide printing services as well. I have been working with this company for two month while I was studying. I am part time employee and seeking for full time job in this industry.

    Key Responsibilities
    Cutting and pasting of vinyl letters on vehicle or on sign boards
    Designing and editing of signs
    Printing of banners on large scale printer
    Helping Customers in their designing needs
    Designing of Business Cards, Letter Heads, Menu, Flyers
    Measurements for sign boards and vehicle
    Designing for vehicle Signage

    Trainee Pre Press Person
    Morgan Printing Pvt Ltd
    This company provide printing services I have worked there for one year during studies that was part of my course and assessment which I have completed successfully. As a Freelancer I am working on my ABN for few companies I have designed logos, broachers, Menu,Business Cards and following websites.

    Jan 2008 – Dec 2009 Diploma of Printing and Graphic Arts (Multimedia) from Victory
    Institute of Professional Training
    Oct 2006 – Dec 2007 Diploma of Accounting from Australian Institute of Commerce and Language

    Referees will be available upon request


  • Candidate of the week – Production Manager/Printer, India

    Seeking for a assignment that will utilize my skills and be given the opportunity to use my diversified knowledge, Experience and Creativity in Printing Technology. Possess expertise to increase Productivity and Profitability.


    June 2008 – Till Date, MCT Cards & Technology Pvt Ltd, Karnataka, India.
    Production Manager

    My responsibilities
    1. Goods are to be produced efficiently and they are of right quality, quantity and right cost
    2. Ensure that they are produced on time, to the satisfaction of the customer, at the right price.
    3. Drawing up a production schedule
    4. Working out the human and materials resources needed
    5. Estimating job schedule, costing and setting the quality standards
    6. monitor the production processes and adjust the schedules as needed
    7. Supervising and motivating a team of workers
    8. At the pre production stage, responsible for materials handling and production planning ( including demand forecasting, production scheduling and ordering of material )
    9. During the Production Stage, responsibilities encompass; production control ( the Sequencing of Jobs, updating time schedules, etc ); stock control; quality control; health and safety issues; and the maintenance and replacement of production equipment.
    10. Most important part of production management involves dealing with people particularly those who work in my team; I will be responsible for scheduling their work, disciplinary matters, projecting their training needs to management and progressing their carrier development.
    11. Follow up of the Security Policy or the Organization
    12. Handle any additional responsibilities as and when given.

    May 2007 – June 2008 Madras Security Printers, Chennai, India.
    Plant Manager

    My responsibilities here are to take care of the whole Production Activities as well as Employees. As this company had recently started the business of Plastic Cards we are looking for more business and I am personally working on Visa and MasterCard Certification Program.
    My Experience in the above mentioned company is totally on training people on quality and creating new documents and forms for production activities with my previous experience.

    Feb 2005 – 2007 Feb – Future Card International,
    Emirates National Factory for Plastics Ind Ltd, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.
    Quality Manager / Asst. Production Manager

    My duties here are taking care of the overall Quality of the Materials coming in and the Products going out and checking the quality at each stage when in process. I also have the authority to correct the machine conditions where there is quality involved and give suggestions to the operators.
    My involvement in Production is Pre fighting the incoming jobs with the help of our Operators and decides how the job should be taken for printing this is because especially Bank Jobs are involved in both Press and Silk Screen with many passes. The other things I get involved in is Job Scheduling as per delivery dates, Job Executing in machines according to Priority as well as make the Press run continuously without having more wash up time. Get feed back from the daily shift supervisors and update the schedule every day so that the no confusion is there in the given schedule and no jobs gets missed. I also provide the daily schedule to all the machines.

    2001 – 2004 Versatile Card Technology (P) Limited, Chennai, India
    Plant Manager

    Duties include daily scheduling of jobs, engineering jobs, managing supervisors staff and maintaining Production related for management review and productivity monitoring.
    Well versed with every stage of the Production Planning of all jobs that comes in to facility.
    Directly involved in Scheduling and Production Planning of all jobs that comes in to facility.
    Maintain quality level at the pre-press and Pressroom by directly involving and preforming press check during production.
    Experience in handling manpower at supervisory level and operator level to take care of day-to-day issues.
    Adequate knowledge of all materials of production involved in plastic card manufacturing.
    Put together process flow manual for ISO certification purposes relating to production as a process.
    Interacted with supplies to maintain adequate inventory levels and make sure quality of raw materials does not deviate from our standards.
    Had the opportunity to work with customer by taking them on plant tours and helping them with design of cards, explaining to them about the complexity and practically of manufacturing them.

    Production Audit Supervisor/ Security Manager

    Responsible for Secured Jobs such as VISA and MasterCard from issuing the material to the Press until the jobs is shipped out. The entire process flow for every job will be controlled and Audited at every stage.
    Responsible for maintaining restricted Card Access entry to employers. Issuing card access to authorized vendors and maintaining all security-related records.
    Assisting Pre-press to maintain specifications in design as per Visa and MasterCard regulations and keeping close track and implementation of ISO specifications for cards.

    1998 – 2001 Sudarsan Graphics, T.Nagar, Chennai, India
    Executive Marketing

    Satisfied all Existing Clients and New Clients with Good Quality Printing and on Time delivery. Kept the Production working round the clock with tight schedule and the job tracked on each stage to give 100% satisfaction to the customer.
    Production Manager

    Responsible for Job Planning, Scheduling, Estimation and Job Approval on the Machine and Execution till the job gets delivered. Quality at each and every stage was taken care during the process.
    Good experience in handling manpower in day-to-day activities.
    Handling inventory and purchase required on day-to-day bases.

    December 1993 – May 1998
    Dar Al Fatah Printing and Publishing Co LLC, Sharjah, U.A.E.
    Offset Machine Operator

    Increased Production keeping Quality in mind at all times.
    Good Quality Printing. (Advertising Agency Jobs) achieved and experience working on the Heidelberg GTO Press.
    Stock Maintenance and Store Keeper
    Taking care of purchase, Issuance as per requirement and maintaining database for inventory.
    Everyday inventory handling over to accounts for proper tracking for payments and purchase.
    Executive Marketing
    Increase sales with a good percentage every month

    Technical Education

    Diploma in Printing Technology,
    1989-1992 Salesian Institute of Graphic Arts (SIGA), Chennai, India
    Certificate Course of Offset Printing, (Part Time Course)
    1991 Annamalai University, Chidambaram, India



  • Entries open for PIXI Awards

    Fuji Xerox users invited to enter annual PIXI Awards.

    Now in its third year in Asia, the PIXI (Printing Innovation with Xerox Imaging) Awards were first held nine years ago in the United States. Fuji Xerox Australia is inviting its customers to participate in this event for the chance to be named a winner.

    The PIXI award program aims to demonstrate the business effectiveness of digital print and provides a platform to showcase the brilliant work that Fuji Xerox and Xerox customers around the world produce on a daily basis. 

    ”Our Australian clients have been very successful over the past two years, taking out more than half a dozen categories in the Asia Pacific awards, and also in the Global PIXI award program,“ said Brett Maishman, national commercial print business manager.

    Award categories cover a range of applications and participants can submit multiple entries per category:

    •   Books and Manuals
    •   Brochures and catalogues
    •   Leaflets, Flyers
    •   Posters & Point of Sale material
    •   Calendars and Photo Books
    •   Multi-piece Production
    •   Cards & Invitations
    •   TransPromo

    If you would like an entry form, or require further information, please contact Brett Maishman at .

    Entries close on 17 September 2010.

  • Letters, feedback, get it off your chest: 1 September 2010

    Support grows for Printing Industries’ Print in Australia campaign. Why not write in and let us know your view on this, or any of our other stories.

    Re: Name and shame for companies printing overseas
    Great to see Printing Industries and Philip Andersen stepping up to the plate on offshore printing. Qantas has been given a rocket.  But for printers there’s an easy one on the horizon, and whom I nominate for the next name and shame target splattering.

    Take aim at Hallmark cards . . . ready, aim, fire, bull’s eye! When you check the back of a Hallmark card, my experience is that it’s printed in China. Their website says that in Australasia "900 employees working together to deliver superior quality products dedicated to providing first class design and innovation". Now, see the trick? There is no mention that the cards are not printed here.

    If Andersen wants to kick off a TV advertising campaign, here’s a billion reasons!
    Paul Daley


    The PIAA want to name and shame print companies who are sending work off shore. Is this the same PIAA that in November 2006 organised for Australian Print companies to tour China to create “partnering advantages”?
    Peter McDonald


    Bravo! We have seven staff in western Sydney. We have lost work because of the use of offshore printing and customers that take the manufacturing over there too.
    While we have to keep standards here in Australia because of laws, such as minimum wages, superannuation, workers’ compensation and the like, the offshore devils bring not just print but all manner of goods into Australia.
    I believe we need to put up the tariffs to stop the goods from entering our shores and unless these countries keep the employees the same way we are treated, don’t let it come in. We even import fruit and vegetables: mum and dad would turn in their grave; if it wasn’t in season you didn’t have it.
    Let’s just say you have my vote.
    Steve Ryan


    Good idea. Why not try and push that textbooks used in Aussie schools are printed by an Aussie printer, using Aussie Paper.
    Doug Affleck


    Re: QANTAS gags comment on $10m print tender
    Fly Virgin.
    Craig Foley

  • Geon girl beats the boys at LIA awards

    Geon’s premedia operator, Samantha Alford, shines at last week’s LIA Graduate Awards in Victoria.

    The 24-year-old was the lone female, up against six males in the competition for the best young printers in Victoria.

    According to Alford, she was “shocked” but extremely happy to learn that she had won. “It was nice to beat the boys. I was surprised that I was the only female in the running – it shows how the industry is still male-dominated," she said.

    "I congratulate the other nominees and wish them all the very best for their future endeavors. I also thank the LIA and Heidelberg for this fantastic opportunity, GEON for its continued support and the endless opportunities it has provided and RMIT for their fantastic course, teachers, staff and facilities."

    Alford’s entry into the printing industry came four years ago when she left her home in rural Victoria to gain employment. She came across an apprenticeship with Penfold Buscombe (now Geon), online, applied and has not looked back since.

    It was a chance encounter, and one that she admits may not have occurred otherwise. “I hadn’t really heard of the printing industry before,” she said. “It would have been nice to know about it at school.”

    Pictured: (l-r) Lindsay Banks, LIA Victoria president; David Caldwell, Apprenticeships Plus; Samantha Alford and John Jinnette, Geon Premedia Manager.

    For three years, Alford studied at RMIT as part of her apprenticeship; time that she believes was well spent. “They have brilliant teachers with lots of experienced; they were a great support,” she said.

    With no plans of leaving the industry, Alford aspires to explore colour management. She also has plans to promote printing to other youth who, like she once did, may not consider it a possible career.

    “It isn’t brought up just how many opportunities there are in the industry and I would like to encourage other women to get involved,” she said.


  • Bonus packages worth up to 6K, including high-end Canon cameras with selected Canon Large Format printers from DES

    If you have been considering purchasing a large format printer, now might be the time to do it.

    DES and Canon are running a generous promotion whereby customers receive a bonus high-end Canon camera (valued at up to $5,499) when they purchase selected Canon imagePrograf printers from DES.

    DES is sweetening the deal by including high-quality paper to the value of $750.

    The printers featuring in the promotion are the 24-inch iPF6300 and iPF6350, and the 44-inch iPF8300.

    With the iPF8300 you receive an EOS 5D Mark II Digital SLR Premium Kit, while the iPF6350 comes with an EOS 7D Digital SLR Super Kit (RRP $3,299) and with the iPF6300 you receive a Powershot G11 compact camera (RRP $799).

    The offer ends October 29 and is strictly while stocks last. For full terms and conditions click here.

  • Stock Journal shows off 3D print

    Adelaide Show took Stock Journal on a wild ride into the world of 3D printing.

    The South Australian paper, owned by Fairfax, decided to produce a 28-page special 3D lift-out in its August 26 edition, reproducing 3D-enhanced images from the Royal Adelaide Show, and was printed on a Goss Community press.

    Percy Henry, production editor-manager at the Stock Journal told Print21 that the publication was an attempt to bring an innovative approach to an historical Adelaide event. “We felt this offered us a chance to capture the imagination of our core readership who look to the Adelaide Show as the pinnacle event on their rural calendar,” he said.

    “This initiative also enabled us to capture and engage non-traditional and ‘casual’ readers as well.”

    This is not the first time a newspaper has published in 3D. Earlier this year, the Sun-Herald (also a Fairfax publication), printed a 3D lift-out to coincide with the State of Origin.

    The special Stock Journal lift-out strict time management and organization, Henry said. “It involved a heck of a lot of research, the adoption and implementation of a new set of skills over a very short period of time, many sleepless nights, copious amounts of communication both internally and externally, time, time and more time, untold amounts of dedication and perseverance from dedicated and motivated staff and the will to conquer the technology."

    The chances of Stock Journal putting out another 3D publication in the future is not out of the question. “The phones started to run hot even before the publication hit the news-stands,” Henry added.




  • Digital newspapers drag behind in Australia: PANPA Forum

    Digital print suppliers urged by PANPA chief to stop with the offset comparisons and show how it can really make a change to newspapers.

    In his frank presentation on digital presses, Mark Hollands, (pictured) CEO of PANPA, admitted that he is a fan of the idea of digital newspapers, but the concept still has far to go locally. In part, he believes this is because print suppliers are not exploring ways for the technology to work within the Australian market.

    “Digital suppliers have an issue with engagement,” he said, referring to case studies of overseas publishers using digital printers to produce newspapers. “There’s not much point in talking about the overseas newspaper market when we don’t have the market here. There’s got to be a lot more work done from the supply side to make that relevant to you [Australia].”

    This year, Océ produced a personalised newspaper, the Digital Daily, for PANPA.  “It wasn’t easy to do, but we wanted to produce a case study of possibilities,” Hollands said.

    He admitted it was “obvious [that] the colours are flatter,” but also pointed out that guest speaker, News Limited CEO, John Hartigan, took his copy with him. “These things have resonance,” Hollands added.

    Hollands also criticised the fact that the Digital Daily had to be printed from Océ’s Munich headquarters. “That’s pretty average and it’s not very green,” he said. “There’s an opportunity to lead the market.”

    Pictured: Breaking the news, the Océ team (l-r) Colin McKenzie, business development manager, production printing; Herbert Kieleithner, national marketing manager, production printing and Robert Koeckeis, director business development, with the Digital Daily.

    According to Herbert Kieleithner, national marketing manager, production printing, Océ-Australia inspiration for the paper came from Niiu, an individualised, personalised newspaper in Berlin created by a 23-year-old entrepenur. “Why did we create the Digital Daily? To inspire you and give you an idea of what is possible,” he said.

    3,800 copies were printed on the Océ Jet Stream 2200 in less than an hour. For those who registered, their edition came complete with their own name and photo featured throughout the 16-page publication, which also contains a QR code to link readers to the latest news.

    “The future publishing industry needs to offer one-to-one communication to its readers,” Kieleithner said. “You can extend your reach and capture people who would not normally read newspapers.”

    Too often, digital is claimed to be a suitable substitute for offset, but Hollands believes that this is not the case, and the supply side should stop the comparisons.

    “Digital print is not a replacement for offset: it can’t do what manroland, Goss and the others can do,” he said. “Talk about the possibilities, as opposed to trying to do the same – it won’t work. There is a cultural shift that needs to be addressed.”


  • Sheetfed operations drag down revenue for Blue Star

    New NZ magazine printing investment on the cards to service ACP Media New Zealand printing contract that includes all of ACP’s consumer magazines, including New Zealand Property Press, Woman’s Day, and The Australian Women’s Weekly.

    A strong six-month finish put a good gloss on the results of Blue Star as it battles decreased volumes, especially in its sheetfed operations, which make up 44% of total revenue. Its annual report shows overall sales revenues for the year down to NZ$569.2 million, a decline of 1.5% over the prior year.

    The PE-backed trans-Tasman group posted a 14.6% increase in EBITDAR to $42.9 million in the 12 months, which led Chris Mitchell, managing director, (pictured), to say: “The result is encouraging and a clear demonstration of the viability of the strategies implemented by management to create a robust platform in the current business environment.”

    He described the industry conditions as challenging, especially in sheetfed printing. However, in talking with Print21, he did flag Blue Star’s intention to establish a heatset web magazine operation in Auckland to take care of the newly won ACP contract. This would be a major investment in the company’s already strong web division. It will have little impact on 2011 results but bolsters the group’s web business for the future.

    In a company announcement the sheetfed sector was described as been most impacted by the global financial crisis, resulting in reduced print volumes, market over-capacity and resultant margin compression. It noted the number of business failures in this sector, particularly in Australia, as well as the significant cost reduction programmes already implemented by the Group under its transformation programme.

    However Mitchell described the overall result as encouraging. “[It is] a clear demonstration of the viability of the strategies implemented by management to create a robust platform in the current business environment.”

    He singled out the continued strength of the web, label and print management businesses.

    “These divisions have responded well to investment in recent years as well as management initiatives and are all positioned very strongly in their respective markets. Management see further opportunities to develop and grow in these parts of the business over the coming year.”

    He said significant steps have been made to improve and reposition the business so as to meet the challenges facing the print industry. “Whilst there is reason to be optimistic, there is no quick fix. Blue Star’s strong market position, its solid cash flow conversion, modern asset base, loyal customers and the commitment of its staff alongside the ongoing support of Blue Star’s shareholders and lenders, have all combined to provide Blue Star with an environment which is conducive to ongoing transformation.”

    Financially the group kept a close focus on cash management with senior debt net of cash balances reducing by $12.9 million. It maintains that ongoing earnings improvement and senior debt reduction demonstrate BSGH’s ability to improve its senior leverage ratio. Interest payments to bondholders remain in suspension. Interest will continue to accrue to investors at the step-up interest rate of 13.1% per annum compounded quarterly