Spanish Masquelibros chooses Ricoh Pro VC60000

To transform print production

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Ricoh
Spanish book printer Masquelibros chooses Ricoh Pro VC60000 to transform digital print production

After consulting its clients, Spanish digital book production specialist Masquelibros is transforming into a highly responsive print on demand operation as it expands into digital magazine production, powered by its investment in a Ricoh Pro VC60000 extended gamut continuous feed press. Replacing an InfoPrint 5000 continuous feed press and joining a Ricoh Pro C9200 digital color sheetfed press, the new addition will help Masquelibros’ enhance its service offering for its local and national publishing clients. It will also support a broader client base and drive an extended reach into Europe.

The managing director, Felipe Garcia chose the press to spearhead his vision because of its speed, productivity, flexibility, color stability and expanded color gamut. Also important was its ability to produce vivid colors on traditional offset coated substrates up to 250gsm, without primers.

Masquelibros’ Ricoh Pro VC60000 is supported by a raft of software solutions that will plan and manage an increasingly diverse job mix. From order to completion, Ricoh ProcessDirector receives jobs from Optimus MIS and manages the automation of the production workflow to the sheetfed and continuous feed presses. Ricoh ProcessDirector manages the integration of 3rd party solutions for pre-flighting, color management, and imposition into the workflow and adds 2D barcodes for the automatic setup of the finishing system for dynamically cutting the media. Whilst ensuring a fast, smooth, and efficient production process, Ricoh ProcessDirector also has the capability to track the book covers and blocks and feedback job data and status to the MIS.

Another reason Ricoh was chosen is its dedicated support for its clients – which was demonstrated during the installation process which began just before Spain went into lockdown in response to COVID-19. When restrictions were eased a team of local engineers was assembled. It was remotely guided by Ricoh Europe, through the build; and to successful commissioning.

“We chose the press to help us respond to some significant changes in market demand,” explains Garcia. “Publishers want affordable high quality, short-run books with a fast turnaround. This means we needed a press that could enable us to supply a wide range of print on demand volumes.

“We are also expecting more magazines to make the switch to digital production and the press is ideally suited to handle that work. With the press, combined with our top of the range finishing capabilities and carefully considered an end to end workflow, we have created the most effective digital print production capability. We can now deliver whatever our publishers want. We are also perfectly placed to expand our market reach in terms of the products and services we offer, the sectors we can support, and the geographical reach we can serve.”

“Masquelibros’ decision to invest in the Pro VC60000 has allowed it to listen to its clients, build on what it knows and explore fresh opportunities from a solid foundation,” said Eef de Ridder, vice president, Commercial Printing Group, Ricoh Europe. “It followed a complete operational review that enabled the team to make the transformation confidently, even in the most challenging of circumstances. This now places Masquelibros in the best position to make the most of emerging opportunities.”

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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