Impel-Welbound – automated binders & inline configurations

A paradigm shift for the future of book Indian production

BindLIne 5000 from Impel-Wellbound is the smartest high-speed binder in its category. Photo Impel-Wellbound

On display at the Printpack India exhibition at Greater Noida will be automatic soft cover and hardcover binders, that can change settings in seconds for delivering high throughputs. Freedom 2K, Welbound’s solution for short-run book printing can read a QR code imprint on the book and change machines settings under a minute. What is more interesting is that the same binder can also be connected inline to a gathering machine at one end and a trimmer on the other. Be it 2,000 books per hour or 5,000, Welbound’s machines occupy the minimum space and consume the lowest power per book. And can be connected and configured to run with other elements of the bind line.

BindLIne 5000 – the smartest high-speed binder in its category, comes with SIgna 5000 signature gatherer with error detection capability and can be connected together in straight, 90 degree, or 180-degree configurations. Speaking to Indian Printer and Publisher, Anil Kumar director – Sales of Impel Welbound says, “The last two years have seen multiple installations of our BindLInes in North India. Arihant Publications, probably India’s largest book printer in terms of daily print volumes, alone has installed three such lines. Then there is Mittal Publications in Meerut. There is also the Freedom 4.2K Binder, which is the heart of the BindLine, being installed at Sterling Graphic Printers (Batra Art), at Deepak Pustak Bandhanalay (DPB Printers), and also at SDR printers.”

The Freedom 2000 and 5000 series of binders and the line and inline solutions from Welbound help address the key challenges faced by Indian book printers – Firstly, the low margins that do not leave room for any errors; secondly, the need for the quick turnarounds of jobs – everything is needed as of day before yesterday; and thirdly, offline processes leading to breaks and losses in workflow momentum; and lastly, the unavailability of space to install binding lines.

The director of Manufacturing for the bookbinding machines company, Viswaprasad Nair says, “Our strong indigenous research and development helped us provide answers to these issues. Our machines are modular and can grow to be a complete line as the customer desires. Various layout possibilities help us install a BindLine in 50% of the area needed by other inline binding solutions.”

In addition to its binder and inline installations in the North, Impel-Welbound has installed several BindLines in the recent past, including those at book print exporters like CDC Printers in Kolkata and Quarter Fold Printability in Mumbai.

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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