Caterpillar Signs installs first Efi VUTEk FabriVU 340i+ at Ahmedabad

Adds to the Efi Reggiani Next 340 dye sublimation printer

(L-R) Abhishek and Atul, unit managers at Caterpillar Signs. Photo Arrow Digital

One of the leading companies in signage, Caterpillar Signs (a group bayport company), recently installed the Efi VUTEk FabriVU 340i+ Soft Signage Printer at its premises in Ahmedabad. 

Nishant Shah, chief executive officer, Caterpillar Signs is thrilled with the addition as they already have a Efi Reggiani Next 340 dye sublimation printer and have added the first Efi VUTEk FabriVU 340i+ to bolster the production requirement. The business supports some of the world’s biggest brands and has a huge international clientele. The FabriVU 340i + will allow the business to keep abreast of the expected uplift in throughput.

Shah adds, “The soft signage market is booming and we anticipate a swift growth in the near future. Soft signage is embraced as a complete green technology which reduces the need of PVC based materials which makes it a complete eco friendly solution.”

Sam Patel, chief executive officer and managing director – Arrow Digital adds, “The Efi VUTEk FabriVU 340i+ is a 3.4 meter wide dye-sublimation printer with an inline fixation system. The integrated fixation capability is perfect for companies that don’t want to spare floor space or Capex spend for an additional stand-alone heat press.

“The FabriVU is a robust, superfast printer which prints at a blazing speed of 5172 square feet per hour. The VUTEk FabriVU 340i+ printer offers ultra-high resolution up to 2400 dpi and three levels of grayscale printing with 7pL, 12pL and 18pL drop sizes. High resolution print heads optimize the ink drops with no overlay for smooth transitions and perfect crispness, resulting in a dramatic four color printing with the widest color gamut, rich blacks and deep color saturation for exceptionally high-quality, backlit and frontlit fabric displays. This platform prints directly onto the textiles saving on transfer paper costs and high energy transfer presses and processes, resulting in instant sublimated prints ready to go.”

The Efi medium viscosity inks contain higher concentrations of ink (dye), more ink means less water, so it’s easier to dry. The yields are far higher than any other printer in the market. With Efi’s latest platen technology, heat is reliably and consistently distributed across the platen for less material and ink waste. And thanks to the ink recovery system, you can save more than 95% of the inks lost during purging, compared to any other printer. The new “plus” model offers the same direct-to-substrate and sublimation transfer printing options as the previous iteration, but it has eight Kyocera printheads rather than four, boosting image quality and increasing speeds in point-of-purchase mode by 48%.

Patel adds, “The new VUTEk FabriVU 340i+ offers customers the widest application range, the lowest TCO in the market, the highest income yield with lowest acquisition cost. Its versatility allows for direct transfer and paper sublimation, with inline fixing switched on as and when required. With the Efi VUTEk FabriVU 340i+ you can produce best-in-class, soft signage applications such as banners, flags, backlit, and other high-end display graphics like one-offs.

Shah shares, “This new addition will help us cater to new business segments and meet the increased ongoing demands. It will give us the capability to print and ship immediately which wasn’t possible with the older versions as it needed calendaring separately. The output of FabriVU 340i+ will help us in delivering high-quality banners, flags, teardrops, exhibition graphics and many more applications which will create a new horizon for us. Thanks to our long standing relationship and support from the Arrow team, we continue to grow rapidly and continue adding more equipment and technology, as Arrow strives to be in the forefront as long as we have known them.”

“Caterpillar Signs has been our esteemed customer since years and we are determined to work with them with cutting-edge, sustainable green solutions and help them build a well-recognized brand in the world. We wish Caterpillar great success with this new addition of green technology,” concludes Patel. 

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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