United Multicolor buys Scodix Ultra Pro digital enhancement press

Value addition in the Pune commercial printing market

L to R: TP Jain

Monotech Systems on 20 December announced the sale of a Scodix Ultra Pro digital enhancement press with foil station, cast & cure and crystal effects to Pune-based commercial print house, United Multicolour Printers. The announcement was made on the third day of Pamex 2017, during a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Monotech’s stand where the Scodix press was being displayed.

Scodix range of digital enhancement presses are exclusively marketed and distributed in India by Monotech Systems. There are more than 30 Scodix installations in India and the Scodix Ultra Pro digital enhancement press with foil station, cast & cure and crystal effects is the first such press to be installed in the city of Pune.

“We believe that in Pune there is a huge pent-up demand for high-end print enhancement jobs. Many customers now want something other than normal foiling and embossing as they want to stand out and look different and they are ready to pay the premium. So, we thought that if we have the required technology to execute such jobs, we can successfully leverage the demand. And that is why we went for the Scodix press,” said Raveendra Joshi, director, United Multicolour.

United Multicolour is one of Pune’s leading commercial printers and has multiple offset presses from Heidelberg and KBA. The new Scodix press is expected to be commissioned in the first half of January, and United has set up a separate team to work on the Scodix. The press will be utilized by United for commercial printing, greeting cards, invitation cards, photo albums, brochures, books and magazines, packaging, direct mail, and a wide range of specialty finished products.

“India has the most number of Scodix installations after the USA, and we have been extremely happy with the way the market has accepted us in the six years since the first Scodix press was installed in India. Currently, about 60% of Scodix installations in India is in the photo segment but we are now focusing hard on the commercial segment and the next few years we will continue to target this segment aggressively,” said Lior Meron, president – APJ, Scodix.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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