AlphaGraphics invests in EFI Pro 16h UV LED Printer

Printer was purchased from authorized EFI dealer Nazdar SourceOne

EFI Pro 16h UV LED wide format printer
EFI Pro 16h UV LED wide format printer

Looking to grow its large-format business amid growing post-COVID market demand, the AlphaGraphics franchise in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, has invested in an EFI Pro 16h UV LED wide format printer manufactured by Electronics For Imaging.

Purchased from authorized EFI dealer Nazdar SourceOne, the hybrid roll-to-roll/flatbed inkjet printer bolsters the premier marketing and printing shop’s services to its local clients operating in a wide range of vertical markets, including food, medical manufacturing, real estate, government, and education.

Chris Carrier and Chris Oberg purchased the business in October 2019 and brought the AlphaGraphics franchise brand to the previously independent shop. Carrier and Oberg brought a vision to grow the business. They had the idea to invest in a hybrid machine that could bring more efficiency and greater variety and capabilities than what the shop’s existing roll-to-roll printers offered. “We have a philosophy of continuous improvement when it comes to sales and operations,” said Oberg.

Working closely with their Nazdar sales contact, Carrier and Oberg researched the EFI printer and were impressed with its performance. Strategically designed with a comprehensive package of features to assure the lowest total cost of ownership, superior image quality, and an ability to handle a wide range of substrates, the Pro 16h printer promised growth possibilities that Carrier and Oberg were looking for. 

“We try to push our customers toward creative thinking, but people equate creativity with higher costs,” said Oberg. “The Pro 16h gives us the ability to push creative boundaries at a lower cost.”

The availability of local service from the EFI display graphics operations located a short distance from AlphaGraphics Portsmouth – and valuable input and feedback from a network of other AlphaGraphics owners – helped convince Oberg and Carrier of their decision. “We are active in our network of other AlphaGraphics owners who use a lot of different flatbeds,” said Carrier. 

“There was a large contingency of owners who were glad they went with EFI and said they would make the same choice if they had to go back.” The duo can also bounce ideas off their AlphaGraphics colleagues who are experienced with the same printer and handle similar customer projects. “Having that additional network of support goes a long way,” Carrier said.

Leveraging efficiencies and lowering TCO with the EFI Pro 16h

Before installing the Pro 16h printer, printing rigid-substrate jobs was a multistep process at AlphaGraphics Portsmouth, involving a roll-to-roll machine and the manual mounting of printed sheets to boards. “Every rigid material job involved cutting, applying vinyl, rolling through twice, and trimming everything,” said Oberg. “That multistep process is no longer needed for a majority of our orders, simplifying around 90% of our orders.”

The Pro 16h printer’s powerful UV LED technology can print directly on a wide range of substrates that cannot withstand the high heat required for curing or drying with traditional UV or latex printers.

AlphaGraphics Portsmouth’s new printer features an EFI Fiery proServer Core digital front end with Fast RIP acceleration technology that helps get work prepped and printed faster than before. The team was familiar with Fiery, having used it on its cut-sheet digital printers. The training helped the team adapt quickly to the new hybrid large-format device. “After installation and training, our staff really took to it,” said Carrier. “They saw the efficiency and elimination of extra steps.”

Four hours of labor savings daily

The shop has already started to benefit from higher throughput and a more reliable production turnaround. Printing at resolutions up to 1,200 dots per inch, the EFI Pro16h prints at a production speed of up to 311 square feet per hour in four colors, and it includes a high-quality, highly opaque white ink that gives AlphaGraphics Portsmouth more options to produce vibrant, full-color work on projects printed on clear or colored substrates. 

Between the printer’s technical capabilities and the shop’s new ability to print direct to substrate, AlphaGraphics Portsmouth has saved about four hours in labor every day and eliminated the need for reprinted jobs that resulted from human error. “We’re seeing growth as our customers recover from COVID,” said Carrier. 

“We couldn’t quite justify hiring an entirely new team member, but the time and labor that the EFI Pro 16h has saved us essentially equate to half of a person. “Our customer-facing folks have become more confident in committing to job fulfillment,” he added. “That’s a benefit you can’t necessarily measure, but you can feel it, and it makes a real impact.”


In 2024, we are looking at full recovery and growth-led investment in Indian printing

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. It created the category of privately owned B2B print magazines in the country. And by its diversification in packaging, (Packaging South Asia), food processing and packaging (IndiFoodBev) and health and medical supply chain and packaging (HealthTekPak), and its community activities in training, research, and conferences (Ipp Services, Training and Research) the organization continues to create platforms that demonstrate the need for quality information, data, technology insights and events.

India is a large and tough terrain and while its book publishing and commercial printing industry have recovered and are increasingly embracing digital print, the Indian newspaper industry continues to recover its credibility and circulation. The signage industry is also recovering and new technologies and audiences such as digital 3D additive printing, digital textiles, and industrial printing are coming onto our pages. Diversification is a fact of life for our readers and like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

India is one of the fastest growing economies in nominal and real terms – in a region poised for the highest change in year to year expenditure in printing equipment and consumables. Our 2024 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock – to emphasize your visibility and relevance to your customers and turn potential markets into conversations.

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