Ballyprint has taken on the first Xerox Iridesse in Northern Ireland as part of a £300,000 spending drive to turn the print shop into a fully-fledged commercial print outfit.
Installed in the last week of February, Ballyprint took the digital production press directly from Xerox after around a year of conversations with the manufacturer. Its special inks – including metallic gold, silver, clear and white – were a key draw for managing director Aaron Klewchuk.
Alongside the Iridesse, the Ballymena-based firm took on a clutch of new kit in the same week that included an HP Scitex FB500 flatbed, an Afinia L801 label printer, an Afinia DLF-220L digital label finisher and a second Heidelberg Platen.
Klewchuk said: “We were quite a small print shop when I bought the firm from my business partner about a year and a half ago, and this whole investment now signifies us expanding upon everything in our offering.
“Bigger than anything, we are switching to web-to-print and taking up a lot more contract work, so we were looking to automate our operations to accommodate this.
“Our relationship with Xerox has been very positive and they did not pressure us into a sale before we were ready. As we can do special applications like silver and gold spot-colours on the digital printer, it may result in cost reductions for our short-run work that would be greatly beneficial to both existing and potential customers.”
Through its co-located sister company Perfect Day Print, Ballyprint processes a number of orders for wedding stationery that involve foiling and other special embellishments. With the Iridesse, Klewchuk hopes to satisfy these requests with the new capabilities.
A dry toner machine, the Iridesse can print either metallic gold or silver, CMYK, white and clear dry ink in a single pass. Taking a maximum sheet size of 330x488mm, the machine can print at speeds up to 120ppm for A4 and 60ppm for sizes A3-SRA3. It can take stocks of between 52 and 400gsm and can print at a maximum resolution of 2,400dpi.
On Ballyprint’s 557sqm premises, the Iridesse and all other new arrivals will work alongside a Presstek DI 36 offset press, a Xerox Versant 80 and a Konica Minolta bizHub Pro C6501.
With 10 members of staff, £600,000-turnover Ballyprint is on track to reach the £1m mark this year, according to Klewchuk.