Xeikon’s web-fed versatile digital presses – Hall 2

Hunkeler Innovationdays – Lucerne 25 to 28 February 2019

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Xeikon
Xeikon CX500

Xeikon, a division of Flint Group, in its earliest incarnations was one of the inventors of digital color printing in 1993, when it presented at IPEX 1993 a web-fed digital press known as the Agfa Chromapress. A long-standing leader and innovator in digital printing technology, grounded in the principles of quality, flexibility and sustainability, Xeikon designs, develops and delivers web-fed digital color presses for label and packaging applications, document printing and commercial printing. These presses utilize LED array based electrophotography, open workflow software and application-specific toners.

As an OEM supplier, Xeikon also designs and produces plate makers for newspaper printing applications. In addition, Xeikon manufactures the basysPrint computer-to-conventional plate (CtCP) solutions for the commercial offset printing market. For the flexographic market, Xeikon offers digital platemaking systems under the ThermoFlexX brand name. ThermoFlexX systems provide high-resolution plate exposure combined with unique plate handling, flexibility and unmatched productivity.

In 2015, Xeikon joined the Flint Group to create a new ‘Digital Printing Solutions’ division for the leading global print consumables and solution provider to the packaging and print media industries. Flint Group develops and manufactures an extensive portfolio of printing consumables. These include a vast range of conventional and energy-curable inks and coatings, pressroom chemicals, printing plates and equipment, printing blankets and sleeves, and pigments and additives for use in inks and other colorant applications. Headquartered in Luxembourg, Flint Group employs some 7,900 people. On a worldwide basis, the company is the number one or number two supplier in every major market segment it serves.

While it is not clear yet which press Xeikon will show at Hunkeler Innovationdays 2019, it usually shows digital presses that are capable of handling a variety of substrates and applications. These generally include very heavy substrates that can be used for packaging and which incorporate unique anti-counterfeiting techniques as well as track and trace using variable printing techniques.

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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