While neither Heidelberg nor Blue Star are willing to disclose how much the deal is worth the 34-unit deal is the biggest ever placed in Australia, and the biggest single sheetfed investment by Blue Star, a $220m turnover trans-Tasman operation.
The order is for four SM102 perfecting presses; three eight-colours and one ten-colour. The presses will be installed throughout the year, with McCollams, Format, Link and Nicholson the recipients.
According to Keith Brodie, Blue Star Group CEO, the deal stems out of the company’s long-term relationship with Heidelberg, but was also a choice based on what his company believes is the best technology for its needs.
“Heidelberg has been the predominant supplier to these companies historically. Its technology is proven and its back-up and service network is well established. The overall BSPG/Heidelberg relationship is strong and its approach to this deal was innovative and pragmatic,” says Brodie.
“The NZ companies have always operated perfectors and these have been and will continue to be the ‘work horses’ of each company. In Sydney, the profile of work is now more suited to a perfector and the latest perfector technology is substantially more productive than straight five or six colour presses. Whilst the new presses are essentially replacements they are all substantially more productive. This will enable each company to sell more capacity.”
McCollams has already received its SM102-8-P eight-colour perfecting press, a pre-owned model, to replace its existing eight colour in an installation that took place last month. Link Printing will receive one brand-new drupa model SM102-10-P ten-colour perfecting press, which replaces Link’s two oldest six-colours, and is due for installation in May.
Format Printing will receive one brand-new drupa model SM102-8-P eight-colour perfecting press replacing its existing eight-colour in July, while Nicholson will install one brand-new drupa model SM 102-8-P eight colour perfecting press, replacing its existing eight colour.
These installations come hot on the heels of a SM102-10-P press installation at Craftsman Press in Melbourne, also a member of the Blue Star Print Group. According to HAN, this installation served as a template for the other four installations at the group.
According to HAN, this makes an order of 34 SM102 units and combined with the SM102-10-P installed at Craftsman Press, makes a total of 44 printing units of the SM102 ordered in the last 18 months.
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