As we found out at Hunkeler Innovationdays in Lucerne, Xeikon has an installed base of somewhere between 70 and 80 digital presses with the greatest number being in Japan and Australia and there are a single-digit number of Xeikon presses in India as well. We also learned that Saxena will be handling the document market while Neeraj Jagga will look after the label and converting segments.
Beginning March 2017, Xeikon will build on the strong market presence that its parent company FlintGroup already enjoys in India as an ink and consumables supplier in the label, folding cartons and commercial printing segments. Serritslev, managing director, Xeikon Asia Pacific, who is based in Malaysia, says, “Previously, we selectively addressed the market through sales partners but customers in India are increasingly looking for unique and special applications to differentiate their business-building on experience of the manufacturer rather than sales partners. At the same time, the Indian market is investing in high-quality and high-performance digital printing systems driven by growth in shorter run production, brand security and variable content demanding direct relationship with the manufacturer.” The change in India involves strengthening of both the sales and customer service team to professionally address customer requirements.
Serritslev continues, “Xeikon’s technology, both for simplex and duplex printing, provides printers and converters with a large selection of applications, which is hard to find from any other single supplier.” In the commercial printing space, Xeikon addresses the B2 plus format with the ability to print unlimited length of image and with several product suites for the wall decoration, books and magazines markets as well as for the textile and pharmaceutical inserts.
Also proving a big attraction for customers in the region is Xeikon’s unique portfolio for labels that includes a FDA-compliant toner for direct dry food contact without barrier coating, very high light fastness, special brand security features, full rotary printing and all charges based on actual consumption rather than click charges.
Over the years, Xeikon has been represented by a number of partners in India with the packaging and label presses and the commercial markets handled by separate channels. With Xeikon’s direct presence in the country, these activities will be the responsibility of a unified entity. The first digital press installed in India was the web-fed duplex Agfa Chromapress, which was in fact a forerunner of the current Xeikon digital presses.
There are several Xeikon installations running in the country with the most recent one being in Surat for commercial catalog production and a few Xeikon label press installs as well. In the press release, Serritslev thanked both “Flexo Image Graphics Pvt. Ltd. and AVS Graphic Solutions (OPC) Pvt. Ltd. for their supportive service to date and for ensuring a smooth transition for our customers.”
Xeikon at Hunkeler and the upcoming Xeikon Cafe in March
At Hunkeler Innovationdays in Lucerne, Xeikon is showing its flagship 9800 duplex press focussing on a security application for a personalized mailer that includes a high-value personalized entry ticket. A number of security features such as variable data, UV clear toner, barcode, spot colors, microtext, guilloches, raised images are a part of the demonstrations which uses Agfa’s Aziro security imaging software to print on a top quality Drewsen security paper while the inline finishing is done on Hunkeler and GUK equipment.
In our brief chat at Hunkeler, Serritslev was clearly pleased at the prospect of the company’s direct presence in India. He is also very confident of the Xeikon 9800 press capabilities which he continuously explained to the Asian visitors at the show. (There is an increased Asian presence at the show although the Indian numbers have apparently not increased.)
The quality of the Xeikon 9800 press is undoubtedly high with a 1200 x 3600 dpi resolution and ability to print unlimited lengths on untreated substrates including thicker and stiffer packaging paperboards. Serritslev emphasizes that the Xeikon VOC-free dry toner is healthy and environment friendly, especially as it does not require substrates to be first treated with a primer.
Serritslev also spoke to us about the Xeikon Cafe event taking place in March 2017 in Belgium. He recommended the event as an important opportunity for printers looking at digital print as there will be more than 40 manufacturers of substrates, finishing equipment and software taking part. “Only 25% will be Xeikon,” he said. The event will include business seminars and key industry speakers and users. Our correspondent Mahan Hazarika will also take part in the event.