Last updateFri, 05 Jun 2020 6am

MPC's 20/20 Vision reveals need for "super-duper" press

Growing print company MPC Solutions invested in new technology at Heidelberg's 20/20 Vision Open House last week. The £3.5m turnover Barnet-based company has historically bought second-hand but this time round it has signed a deal on a highly specified new Speedmaster XL 75. The new press proved more cost-effective than the second-hand options, saving the company money and offering the potential to boost profits.

"Savings in labour and waste paper alone justify this £1.4m investment," says Tony Crook, managing director of MPC Print Solutions.

The press is a five-colour B2 Speedmaster XL with inline coating, Inpress Control automated colour and register adjustment, Pressroom Manager workflow and a wallscreen graphic user interface complete with a three year full service warranty with Heidelberg.

MPC Print Solutions will justify the new machine by reducing its pressroom labour by 50% with a two for one press swap, whilst halving its makeready waste from 200-300 to 100-150 sheets. Additionally, it will make savings in power and consumables. The company supplements its full time staff with operators sourced through agencies on a contract basis so no redundancies will be needed to create the labour savings.

"We have been operating 24/7 over two presses for the last couple of years and are very, very busy. Two and a half years ago we moved to this new 10,000 sq ft from a 5,000 sq ft premises but already we are bursting at the seams. So we were faced with the predicament of having to take on larger premises and buying more presses which would have increased operating costs dramatically. So after investigating and talking to Heidelberg we discovered that this two for one press swap will not only relieve the space pressure but increase capacity at the same time," says Mr Crook. "And best of all, it won't cost us any more in operating costs!"

"With six minute makereadies and an operating speed of 15,000 sheets per hour, we realized that we could produce our current workload that is currently spread over two presses with just one 'super-duper' press! To maximise output you need InPress Control and Pressroom Manager but equally we needed peace of mind that downtime would be minimal. That is why we needed to buy new and a have a partner whose service you can trust. This press has remote access and Heidelberg service is second to none, so I can sleep at night," says Mr Crook.

The company has invested in a three year full parts and labour Warranty Plus contract with Heidelberg to provide this peace of mind.

Mr Crook believes that the new press, which will be delivered in June, will output about 30 million plus sheets a year. This is as much, or more, than the company outputs on its two older SM 74s, a five- and six-colour, which are being replaced.

North American born Tony Crook moved to the UK in 1984 when he was 20 years old and went into machine sales with Minolta and then Xerox Copier companies. He went on to buy his own copy shop in 1990 when he was 26 years old. Still keeping an eye on digital he quickly migrated to litho offset presses, starting with GTOs and then SM 74s. He now boasts a full complement of copiers, HP Indigo, small offset and large offset presses.

"With a 'sales and service comes first' attitude, I have been able to grow the business year on year. I have always had the belief that without something to print it's no use spending money on new-fangled machines. Just good 'old fashioned' service with an emphasis on quality will keep customers coming back for more. But this time we don't need to produce anything extra than we do now to cost justify this press which will be quicker and more efficient than ever before.

"The technology is mind blowing! It will allow us to produce work on heavier boards but mainly it will be used for a wide variety of general commercial material for customers who include many design and marketing agencies. With the Speedmaster XL 75-5+L in place, the gap between litho and digital will close. Fast set up with Pressroom Manager and InPress Control and low waste sheets will make litho more viable at even the lowest of runs and give our customers a wider choice.

"It will give us, more than ever, the ability to say yes and react to our customers' needs, whilst providing the most colour consistent top quality work, to ISO standards," says Mr Crook.

The company also offers a wide range of finishing in-house, having invested heavily in this area too. Its includes in-house laminating with a new B2 Autobond laminator, a Heidelberg ST350 seven-station saddle-stitcher plus cover feeder and Stahl B1 all buckle folder as well as perfect binding, die-cutting and embossing as well as the standard cutting and folding services.

Close Asset Finance is supporting the investment by MPC Print Solutions. Mr Crook says his company has never had an issue raising finance, believing that you should only buy what you can afford, have the right accounts, right plan and an open conversation with your suppliers. By doing this you can have a choice of financial partner, he believes. 'Close Asset has that 'can do' attitude that I like," says Mr Crook



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