Leading Label powers on with HP Indigo

Based in Christchurch, Leading Label has transitioned from operating as a small company to become a successful and profitable business.

Central to its success is its owner Bryce Coulbeck and his attitude to running the company. He says, “I love having the opportunity to expand the business and we have used the latest technology as a major factor in achieving our growth goals. Of course, this has to be an ongoing process.”

Recently, Leading Label installed an HP Indigo 6r Digital Press, supplied through Currie Group.

HP Indigo built the 6r Digital Press on the foundation of the narrow web printing solution for digital labels and packaging production, the HP Indigo 6000 series.

Coulbeck says, “We already had the HP Indigo 4600 and it had served us well but we were looking to upgrade. We have a number of reasons to move to the latest technology. To start with, speed matters for productivity gains. The running speed on the new press is twice that of the old one.”

The press allows converters to produce any narrow format label, flexible packaging, sleeve, IML, wrap-around label or folding carton job, with easy and quick changeovers. It supports 12 to 450 micron materials, including standard media with inline priming.

He says, “The technical experts at HP Indigo have obviously worked out some useful innovations with the 6r. The web guiding is an area we have seen a great improvement. There is little to no adhesive build up. Also, we were printing offline but we don’t need to do that now; everything happens in one pass. The HP Indigo 6r also delivers superior colour consistency.”

The HP Indigo 6r Digital Press uses superior liquid ElectroInk technology; the only digital colour printing process that matches gravure printing, according to HP. It achieves high resolution and near perfect registration. Converters can fulfil strict corporate branding requirements using seven ink stations and a colour gamut reaching 97 per cent of Pantone colours. Premium white ink provides high opacity in one pass and white for sleeves improves efficiency for converting shrink sleeves.

Mark Daws, director labels and packaging A/NZ Currie Group, says, “The HP Indigo 6r digital Press offers Leading Label opportunities to move ahead and expand its business. At Currie Group, we are excited with the possibilities the new press offers for Leading Label and we look forward to supporting Bryce and his team as they progress.”

Quality and lower costs

Leading Label saves time and money with the HP Indigo 6r Digital Press. He says, “Maintenance is far easier. The consumable parts last longer and are easier to change over. For example the, printing blankets are much easier to change and they last three to four times longer.

“Essentially, it is an offset digital press. We did look at toner-based and inkjet machines but HP Indigo quality is so great and the running costs are also excellent for our business.

“Currie Group offers top back up service; in my opinion, far superior to other offerings in New Zealand. There is no one else offering that level of service in New Zealand and probably Australia too.”

Craig Paul, country manager for Currie Group New Zealand, says, “The HP Indigo 6r Digital Press is part of a programme where the HP Indigo factory reconditions presses that undergo an extensive parts replacement and testing process to achieve print quality equivalent to a newly manufactured press. It comes with a factory warranty. This programme forms part of HP Indigo’s effort to reduce waste and minimise impact on the environment.

“Bryce and his team at Leading Label can also take advantage of the HP Indigo workflow ecosystem including the high productive digital front end: Production Pro for Labels and Packaging and an array of integrated MIS, pre-press and converting solutions from partners.”

Coulbeck says, “Right now, we are pleased to have made this investment but looking ahead, the HP Indigo 6r Digital Press will open up new markets and allows us to consolidate our presence in others. Previously, we were losing ground in the small to medium run multi-colour sector but this will change.

“We are seeing organic growth and for us that is important: growth and the bottom line. Understanding the growth areas in a mature sector is also important for Leading Label.”

This article was authored by NZP’s Bruce Craig

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