Smyth at drupa – Hall6 C25

Book sewing and finishing pioneer looks at India

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Smyth FF280 4D automatic book sewing machine Photo Smyth
Smyth FF280 4D automatic book sewing machine Photo Smyth

With approximately 600 active customers in over 65 countries across 5 continents, 95% of the pioneer Smyth’s turnover originates from exports thanks to a strong network of exclusive distributors and agents. For the inventor and pioneer of section sewing for bookbinding, continuous expansion underscores dedicated adaptation to varying market demands, with products and services customized across various regions. Adaptability is the company’s strength which it believes is the key to entering a dynamic and evolving market like India.

India indeed stands out as an emerging country with unparalleled growth potential, not only within emerging markets but also globally. This confidence in its growth profile comes from India’s economic and demographic factors. While China remains a significant player in the printing industry, we believe that India has unique characteristics that make it an exciting prospect for long-term growth.

In this context, Smyth can effectively cater to customers’ needs and purchasing power, thereby contributing to India’s growth. The company is a viable alternative to Chinese machines and expensive European counterparts, offering high-quality products at competitive prices.

Its approach to the Indian market involves introducing its brand, highlighting the value of its solutions, and proving its quality while emphasizing integrity in conducting business to create enduring business relationships, assisting customers and fostering their business growth. Its automatic entry-level solutions can immediately hit the mark and meet the demands of the Indian market, offering European quality at more affordable prices.

Also, top-of-the-line reconditioned machines are a smart choice that balances quality and cost-effectiveness. As a manufacturer, Smyth meticulously strips down the machine, inspects, and replaces components, following strict quality control procedures during the refurbishment process, supplying overhauled machines that offer reliable performances comparable to brand-new ones at almost half price.

Smyth has announced that its cutting-edge technology and innovative finishing solutions are now ready to enhance value and drive profitability for Indian printers and binders, as well. It invites Indian book printers and exporters to meet its team of experts and have a look at its technology and new solutions.

David Smyth – the inventor of the thread book sewing method

Smyth is an Italian company that has been at the forefront of thread book sewing machines and finishing solutions production since 1879. It is the inventor of the thread book sewing method commonly known as ‘Smyth Sewing.’ The Irish-American visionary entrepreneur and inventor David McConnell Smyth filed the Smyth Sewing patent, established the company, and championed the shift from labour-intensive hand binding to the industrial-scale production of long-lasting books.

The global impact of the introduction of Smyth thread book sewing machines was huge with industrially produced section-sewn books flooding global markets. Schools, libraries, and homes gained access to knowledge as literacy rates soared. People from diverse backgrounds could now read, learn, and explore. The company founder’s legacy extended beyond business—it became a catalyst for education and enlightenment.

Smyth’s commitment to excellence lives on in Smyth’s DNA. The company continues to innovate, and for more than 100 years has been producing book sewing machines, gathering and sewing lines, casemakers and book finishing solutions for books including print-on-demand and short runs.

Smyth headquarters in Northern Italy 100 kilometers from MilanPhoto Smyth
Smyth headquarters in Northern Italy 100 kilometers from Milan
Photo Smyth

Today Smyth is an Italian-owned company with two manufacturing facilities including the Smyth 6,000 square meter headquarters 100 kilometers from Milan and the second site in Turin where all the mechanical components are manufactured. Designing, building, assembling and technical support, are strictly in-house to ensure products and services of the highest possible standards.

Domain experience

Whether it is binding a novel or securing a catalogue, Smyth’s expertise runs through every twist and turn of the thread with book sewing machines and finishing solutions for both offset and digital printing. Within Smyth’s factory, deep know-how flows as senior technicians pass down their secrets to apprentices and junior technicians who carry forward the legacy. Paper possesses a fascinating complexity beyond its physical form – it is a living entity that responds dynamically to its environment and different working conditions. It’s not just about nuts and bolts; it’s about the soul of sewing, competencies and skills in every machine and bookbinding solution offered to the market.

Smyth’s extensive book sewing machines and finishing solutions range from simplified hand-fed and semi-automatic book sewing machines to fully automated solutions – including entry-level, special-purpose and oversized book sewing machines which represent our core business. Unique technical features, top-quality materials and patented devices make Smyth machines robust, reliable and durable for manufacturing high-quality compact sewn books.

Budget-friendly options

Acknowledging, that not every production budget can accommodate costly investments Smyth also offers competitive and cost-effective solutions without compromising quality. It has entry-level automatic book sewing machines. The company aims to deliver top-quality machines that align with each customer’s unique requirements, regardless of their company size.

When excellence is non-negotiable, Smyth’s premium automatic gathering and sewing lines such as the Smyth Unit are recommended. This is the world’s most compact gathering and sewing line, designed to be operated by a single operator, drastically reducing production costs.

Smyth FX-80 semi-automatic book sewing machinePhoto Smyth
Smyth FX-80 semi-automatic book sewing machine
Photo Smyth

Its newly developed logic offers fast set-up times by automatically running the book program as soon as the signatures have been positioned in the gathering station, resulting in significant timesaving. For achieving and maintaining high-quality products and services, Smyth has implemented a Quality Management System covering all stages of design, production, sales and after-sales services.

The company delivers value-added after-sales service throughout the entire lifecycle of the investment. Its policy is to provide free of charge remote technical support to quickly and easily identify the source of any trouble. A qualified team is always on hand, and spare part availability is guaranteed with over 25,000 part numbers in stock.

Smyth machines built since 1967 are still in operation, and the company is capable of technical support and spare parts for them worldwide. In this regard, Smyth has already selected a list of potential Indian distributors – reputable and reliable companies – for meeting at drupa24 to establish an exclusive distribution channel in the region.

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.

– Naresh Khanna

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