Variable data specialist Mailfactory has chosen four KODAK PROSPER S5 Imprinting Systems to help it meet today’s market demands for variable-colour images at high speed. The investment, complementing six existing KODAK VERSAMARK Printheads, allows the company to increase competitiveness with a broader offering and more cost effective production costs.
Based in Madrid, Spain, Mailfactory was established in the late 1990s by a group of direct marketing professionals to add a distinctive touch to the personalisation and variable-data options available on the market. That distinctive touch is a suite of special finishes, which in turn have become the company’s hallmark.
Today, Mailfactory exports a quarter of its production to other European Community countries and after investing in the KODAK PROSPER S5 Imprinting Systems, the company plans to increase this figure to 40%.
The latest additions follow the successful installation of the VERSAMARK Printheads that enabled Mailfactory to broaden its product base by offering personalisation on high quality litho printed medium to long runs. Encouraged by the easy retrofittable capability of the PROSPER Imprinting Systems, the operation has been able to expand to meet increased demand as it grew. All ten KODAK Printheads – the six VERSAMARK Printheads and four PROSPER S5 Imprinting Systems– are integrated with a single controller, so it can print black and colour at roll-feed speed.
Now the company uses its new set-up to produce a range of documents, including personalised mail-outs, promotional literature, catalogue covers, and business and corporate collateral.
“Customers are asking us for variable-colour images to help them win more contracts,” comments Mailfactory’s General Manager for Sales & Marketing, Eric Lahon on the growth in demand for these services. “Our production process was already complicated by the fact that we offer so many special finishes, such as windows, laminating etc. We needed a solution that could deliver excellent quality at high speeds – and allow us to process our special finishes like scratch-off coatings embossing, labelling and enveloping. We needed it to produce flawless images every time, so we could forget about that aspect of production and focus on other areas. The PROSPER S5 Imprinting Systems certainly deliver on this front.”
Mailfactory’s Managing Director, Julián Penche, adds: “The PROSPER S5 Imprinting Systems allow us to deliver hybrid imprints – for example, to apply colour only where the web needs it. The product is as good as a full-colour version, but it’s more competitive because the heads print only where the information is required reducing the amount of ink necessary – and we can still add our special finish.”
“We aim to print 10% of our annual production with the PROSPER S5 Imprinting Systems in 2013,” explains Penche. “We then plan to increase this by 30% every year after that.”
He also believes that having the PROSPER Imprinting Systems means his company has something different to offer at trade exhibitions: “As one of the few companies in Europe with this technology, the KODAK Solution has helped improve our efficiency and allowed us to reduce document costs – we are excited by the clear growth opportunities available here.”
Easy integration into existing set-up
Mailfactory explored all options on the market before choosing the PROSPER Imprinting Systems: “We chose Kodak because it was much easier to integrate the S5 Imprinting Systems into our existing systems, and we could print extremely high quality products,” continues Penche.
“We believe the productivity of these Printheads, and the quality they deliver is the best on the market today. We ranked the new imprinting system’s runnability as one of the critical production issues. Fortunately, there have been no problems in this respect.”
Lahon is also impressed with PROSPER Imprinting Systems: “We wanted the best solution on the market to deliver top-quality products to our customers. Kodak was the only company capable of delivering the contrast and colour we were looking for.
Penche concludes Kodak has delivered on its promises: “The Printheads have been working properly since day one, and we’ve plenty of room to grow because our infrastructure can accommodate four more Printheads. In fact, the installation has had a positive impact across our operation, as it entailed raising standards across our whole production line.”
Delivering quality and speed
Olivier Claude, General Manager for Print & Vice President Commercial Business EAMER Kodak comments: “The retrofittable and flexible KODAK Printheads mean printers like Mailfactory can make a big affordable difference to their product portfolio offerings by adding personalisation as and when it is needed. There is no need for capital investment in a digital press and heads can be added as and when demand dictates. It also enables the creation of a highly effective hybrid solution that offers the speed of litho and the personalisation of digital helping businesses more cost-effectively address the question of digital and litho crossover points.”