Imagination Graphics has been crowned the winner of the Konica Minolta National Specialised Print Awards 2018, for its Hamptons pop-up book.
The Marrickville, Sydney based printer beat out the winners of each state, including Whoyou Creative in South Australia, Tako Print Solutions from Western Australia, Tennyson Print from Queensland, Revolution Print representing Victoria, and Elect Printing as the ACT competitor.
You can see a gallery of photos from the night here.
Accepting the award for Imagination was Emmanuel Buhagiar, known as Budgie, who thanked his team, and dedicated the win to them.
Buhagiar says, “I am gobsmacked – up against all of these other great printers – this is just sensational.
“I have to say, I only sell. All of these awards belong to my staff. They have a passion for printing and they know what I want to get out of my machines and what to sell people and give them, whether it is a one-colour business card to a full colour annual report, it has to be top shelf for me.
“I would like to thank Sue, the two Davids – Procter and Cooke, the best rep in Australia, Devan, and his mate Chris who have always looked after me.
“I love being a part of the Konica Minolta organisation. From the day that Sean Crichton-Browne walked in nearly 10 years ago with the 6500 to now. I never thought in a million years we would end up here.
“It has been a great journey and I personally believe the business has grown because of the equipment I have got from Konica, the style of printing and the quality of printing as you can see and what we presented the last few years digitally has been very good. I am happy to be part of the family.
“The Hamptons book was a very hard job, and we only had about three weeks to complete it. It came through Alison Ward – a creative designer, after we were recommended by another printer who do great quality digital work.
“Low res images to start with, a die-cut house to be built and we did whatever we could do to get his job out, and at the beginning of the year – the AccurioPress was good and the print was good.
“The customer did not want it on a coated stock or an uncoated stock – so we came up with Splendorgel from Spicers. It was a little bit expensive but he was happy it and even wanted a picket fence pocket at the back – so he threw everything at us.”
Sue Threlfo, general manager, Production and Industrial Print, Konica Minolta acknowledged the people that have travelled from every state and the judges – Real Media Collective CEO Kellie Northwood, Kenneth Beck from Carbon8, Anthony Parnemann of EFI as well as Konica Minolta’s Darrell John.
There was a record number of entries for this year's awards with 245 entered for 2018.
Threlfo says, "We have the great joy of seeing the amazing work that Konica Minolta customers are sending in, it is has been very exciting for us and we realise how challenging it is to judge a winner.
“The categories this year have been expanded, with digital flat sheet, digital print bound books, digital brochures, digital labels and digital embellishment.
“The NSPA is a celebration of our customers and it is way for us to recognise their creativity combined with the Konica Minolta engines to produce such amazing work for their customers.
“It is the only vendor-run awards event that we are aware of and we are very proud of that.
“We have never seen such quality before – and as a result the judging was challenging. I came in to witness the judges hard at work, the categories and jobs are diverse.
“They judge the quality of the document against the category and there is scoring that is collated, all done in secrecy so that each does not know what the other is judging.
“Even our judges did not know the winners.”
Dr. David Cooke, managing director, Konica Minolta, also thanked the attendees, and announced that the company was in the running to win an award of its own.
Cooke says, “Last night we received a call from the Human Rights Commission and have been informed that we are one of the five finalists for the Australian Human Rights Award.”
Konica Minolta, under Cooke’s leadership, have been working to stamp slavery out of its supply chains, and compelling other businesses to do the same.
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