Lokmat installs Orient X-cel presses at Nashik, Aurangabad

Reducing wastage of paper in broadsheet dailies


Lokmat Media, spread into different verticals including publishing, broadcasting, digital, entertainment, community and sports, is the largest read Marathi language news daily with 11 editions in Maharashtra and Goa. Speaking to Indian Printer & Publisher, Neeraj Mahajan – vice president, Lokmat, Pune talked about the various initiatives taken to expand the company’s existing production facilities as well as reduce expenses. 

With a rich experience of over 25 years, Neeraj Mahajan currently addresses the operations of 12 production sites across Maharashtra. He says, “At Pune, we upgraded the existing Manugraph presses with the 2C units. The existing Hiline Y printing unit was upgraded to a 4 x 4 printing station by mounting a 2C printing station on it. Higher productivity and full color printing are the driving forces behind the idea. With this technology, existing presses can be utilized at one-fifth the cost of a new installation and plans are afoot to take this concept to other existing units as well.”

Apart from upgradation of installed presses at Nashik in June 2015 and at Aurangabad in March 2016 Lokmat Media has met the growing demand of news dailies with the installation of Orient X-cel presses. The Nagpur and Aurangabad plants are spread across 12 acres of land and both the presslines comprise shaftless, 5 4-Hi tower-type 4 x 4 presses to produce 20-page news dailies in 4-color at a maximum speed of 36,000 copies an hour.

Talking about the Orient presses Mahajan says, “Previously we had seven installations of Orient presses in Nagpur, Nashik, Solapur, Akola and Nanded units and the runnability of 42 gsm to 45 gsm newsprint by non-indigenous as well indigenous sources effectively pass through the presses, without having much web break. Installation of QI Press controls, that is, mRC-3D cameras for color register and cut-off control, ensures that the organization has shorter makeready period and a consistent color quality. The only difference with recent installations at Nashik and Aurangabad units and other Orient presses is cut-off length. Earlier, it was 546 mm, but now it is down to 533 mm, this will reduce the paper wastage to 40 mm in broadsheet dailies.”

Printing infrastructure  

According to Devendra Darda, managing director, Lokmat Media, Lokmat’s prepress activities incorporated at all units make use of the database-driven latest editorial workflow system. All offices and district units are interconnected with intranet so as to give the latest updates and news to the readers. “Optimum use of information technology helps to gather news and photos from district level to printing centres. This is further combined with a high-end pagination system that finally processes the pages with various pre-flighting software before printing. Quality along with quantity has been our greatest asset with highspeed printing infrastructure,” says Darda.

“As far as printing machines are concerned Lokmat has a fleet of Manugraph machines which fulfil our high-speed demands. All the machines use full automation which consists of treated water with controlled pH and temperature / conductivity, centralized inking system, auto cut-off and auto registration systems and inline reel auto pasting,” adds Darda.

In postpress Lokmat has indigenous mailroom systems comprising conveyors and counter stackers which facilitate fast and accurate counting as these machines are connected to computers monitoring, counting and proper distribution.


In 2024, we are looking at full recovery and growth-led investment in Indian printing

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. It created the category of privately owned B2B print magazines in the country. And by its diversification in packaging, (Packaging South Asia), food processing and packaging (IndiFoodBev) and health and medical supply chain and packaging (HealthTekPak), and its community activities in training, research, and conferences (Ipp Services, Training and Research) the organization continues to create platforms that demonstrate the need for quality information, data, technology insights and events.

India is a large and tough terrain and while its book publishing and commercial printing industry have recovered and are increasingly embracing digital print, the Indian newspaper industry continues to recover its credibility and circulation. The signage industry is also recovering and new technologies and audiences such as digital 3D additive printing, digital textiles, and industrial printing are coming onto our pages. Diversification is a fact of life for our readers and like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

India is one of the fastest growing economies in nominal and real terms – in a region poised for the highest change in year to year expenditure in printing equipment and consumables. Our 2024 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock – to emphasize your visibility and relevance to your customers and turn potential markets into conversations.

– Naresh Khanna

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