Goregaon’s Kataria Enterprises installs Canon imagePress C910

Installed before the 2nd wave but pandemic constraints restrict operations

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L to R – Krunal Jivani of Canon India and Prakash Suthar of Kataria Enterprises with the imagePRESS C910
L to R – Krunal Jivani of Canon India and Prakash Suthar of Kataria Enterprises with the imagePRESS C910

Located in the Mumbai suburb of Goregaon, Kataria Enterprises recently installed a brand-new Canon imagePress C910 production press. The press was supplied directly by Canon India. The imagePress C910 has a speed of 90 pages per minute and handles media up to 350 gsm. The press has 2400 dpi resolution and is offered a choice of digital front ends – either Canon’s Prismasync Print Server Version 7 or the EFI Fiery-powered imagePress Servers. Kataria has opted for the EFI Fiery G250 Version 2 RIP and front end. 

We had an old pre-owned Canon press which we wanted to replace and get a faster press so we decided to go for another Canon. We knew about the quality of Canon printers and were very happy with it. The after-sales service is excellent. Also, we own a Konica Minolta bizhub Press 1060, which we have been operating for close to six years. Since we already had a Konica press, it was good to have a Canon production press as well so that we can have both the technologies,” says Prakash Suthar, a partner in Kataria Enterprises.

Suthar had last year booked an order for the Canon imagePress C810 press. However, due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdown, he had to cancel the order. So it was in March of 2021 that Suthar decided to get in touch with Canon again. This time he had decided to go for the imagePRESS C910 instead of imagePRESS C810.

Kataria Enterprises, which has been operating from the current premise for close to two decades, mainly services retail customers in Goregaon and prints items such as brochures, visiting cards, stickers and danglers, and other publicity material. 

Operations hit due to Covid-19 second wave

Kataria Enterprises commissioned the imagePress C910 in April and had run it only for a couple of weeks when the Covid-19 pandemic’s second wave hit the country. The print shop drastically reduced operations and consequently saw a sharp decline in volumes. Work began again in June and improved from the middle of that month as restrictions were gradually relaxed. 

Our volumes declined massively during the pandemic. However, since June, things have improved, and volumes have gone up to almost 50% of pre-second wave levels. We output about 25,000 impressions of 12×18-inch (A3 plus) sheets in June. Since there are still some restrictions on the number we can operate in a day, the volumes are still subdued. We hope to see further recovery in volumes once all restrictions are removed,” Suthar says. 

At present, according to Mumbai municipal orders, commercial establishments can operate for only limited hours in the day. In addition, the local Mumbai suburban trains are also not yet open for the general public, which profoundly affects commerce in the city.

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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