SS Book Binding starts operation with Welbound WB2000

New bindery in Navi Mumbai

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Sanjiv Singh and Dayashankar with the Welbound WB2000
Sanjiv Singh and Dayashankar with the Welbound WB2000

SS Book Binding is a new venture started by two young entrepreneurs with background in engineering and paper trading. The Navi Mumbai-based bindery was established in January this year by Sanjiv Singh, who has an engineering background and Dayashankar, who also has a waste paper collection and trading business. SS Book Binding operates from a unit in Pawne MIDC in the Navi Mumbai’s industrial belt of Turbhe.

“Since we were new to the printing industry, we did not want to take big risks and plough in a large amount of capital. Therefore, we thought of starting with a bindery and then gradually expand in the print industry,” says Singh.

Currently, SS Book Binding has about 15 small and big machines with the showpiece being a brand new Welbound WB2000 six clamp perfect binding machine. In addition to the WB2000, the shop floor also has folding machines, cutting machines, pinning machines, corner cutting machines and embossing machines, among many others.

Asked why the company invested in a brand new Welbound WB2000 from the very start, Singh said, “Although we have started small, our main focus is to provide quality work and make on-time delivery. So, we had to go in for a brand new Welbound perfect binding machine. We had the option to buy a much cheaper machine, but we were told by our colleagues and many other printers that investing in a Welbound will be the best bet. Yes, Welbound comes at a very high premium to other Indian brands but it is worth it. The productivity and accuracy of the WB2000 is amazing.”

SS Book Binding is running the WB2000 for about 10 hours every day with a speed of 2,000 books per hour, the maximum speed that the machine offers. The bindery is producing about 600,000 books of various sizes per month. Important features of the Welbound WB2000 include strip milling system which eliminates dust, three-roller gluing system with head and tail cut-off, separate side gluing, online cover feeding and creasing.

Consignment waiting to be dispatched
Consignment waiting to be dispatched

Strong growth in orders
Although SS Book Binding is just about six months old, the growth in the orders has been very strong. The company produces a range of educational books that are exported to Africa. Singh believes the company will need to expand capacity soon.
“Yes, we have seen a very strong growth in orders and the way our orders are growing, we will soon need to add more capacity. We may add another six-clamp perfect binding machine. Or, it can be a 10-clamp machine as well. Yes, it will most likely be a Welbound,” he added.

Diversifying into printing
The duo of Singh and Dayashankar has plans to expand beyond binding once they achieve a certain level of size. They are looking at moving into printing and plan to set up a printing press soon.

“We have just begun in the printing industry and at the moment the focus is fully on SS Book Binding. But yes, we have thought of setting up a press after a few years when we know more about the industry. As we interact and work with printers, we will understand the print side of the business and how it works. But for the moment we are completely focusing on the binding business and working on making it a success,” concluded Singh.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital 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.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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