Paro Printing Unlocks Book Printing Market with HP Indigo W7200 Digital Press and HP Indigo 7000 Digital Presses
- Provide added-value customer services to increase customer retention
- Create profitable new revenue streams and market opportunities
- Compete with overseas print suppliers
- HP Indigo W7200 Digital Press
- HP Indigo 7000 Digital Press x 3
- HP Indigo press 5500
- HP Indigo press 5000
- Web-to-print solution – complete service from web order to delivery
- Book Factory Systems including material handling solution and in-line laminator for end-to-end single-copy book production and material handling solution
- New revenue opportunities from monochrome and colour books and transactional print
- HP Indigo W7200 Digital Press’s flexibility enables a wide variety of applications and control of end-to-end print production
- Improved print speed, enabling customers to respond faster to market opportunities
- Further integrate web-to-print and streamlined online customer ordering service
- Capability to cost-effectively print longer run jobs
- Capture new markets with single-copy book production
- Expanding its horizons
Paro Printing is a privately owned, Netherlands-based digital print house, with an enterprising strategy for success, designed to broaden its reach and provide its customers with a global, premium quality publishing and marketing printing service. With the tools and expertise for the production of market-leading, pioneering print, publishing and marketing applications, Paro Printing is a company on the cutting edge of innovation. Jan-Paul van den Hurk, owner and CEO of Paro Printing comments: “As a business, you can’t afford to relax or become complacent. We know that the key to our business growth is the ability to serve our customers better than our local competitors, and in our case, also better than much larger overseas competitors.”
Jan-Paul van den Hurk, owner and CEO of Paro Printing
Maintaining a competitive edge Unafraid of taking risks or changing its business focus to match market requirements, Paro Printing began life in 1946 as a traditional litho based commercial printer. In 2000, the company moved its technology focus to a 100 percent digital print workflow. This decision, like all others taken by the forward thinking business, was not made lightly or based on technology availability, but designed to better meet the needs of its customers and enable long term business growth. Initially focused on supplying the enterprise space with a range of manuals, internal and external publications, books and marketing collateral, Paro Printing realised that it was losing market share to a number of new competitors. These companies were a mix of big overseas service providers including reprographics houses, facilities management companies and global document print managers. In order to compete, Paro needed to find ways to reduce its prices, shorten its turnaround times and offer additional customer value. Following considerable research, it concluded that digital print was the answer. Through its policy of working directly with enterprises and small-to-medium size businesses, it knew that marketers, brand owners and print procurement managers were all looking to minimise costs and better target their marketing. Digital printing, with its personalisation capabilities and ability to provide short runs, was considered a good match. For the last nine years, Paro Printing has offered commercial print and publishing applications using HP’s digital print technology, including an HP Indigo press 5000, an HP Indigo press 5500 and three HP Indigo 7000 Digital Presses. Today, the company also operates an online print ordering facility, from which up to 95 percent of all print transactions are placed. For the consumer market, these transactions are a mix of social community driven print applications, like self-published books through blurb.com; greeting cards through tinyprints.com; and photo albums through memolio.com. For the b2b market, the company provides global marketing collateral fulfilment for corporate enterprises including Philips Electronics, and product documentation for companies such as Fei Company. “Our fleet of digital print equipment, especially our HP Indigo presses, enabled us to capitalise early on the transition from litho to digital production, and pass on all the benefits of the process and creative opportunities to our customers. “More specifically, the quality and consistency of colour provided by our original HP Indigo press 3050, enabled us to expand into the larger, worldwide enterprise space. We achieved this by providing a ‘Paro’ print quality standard, which other suppliers to these companies were happy to match, as contract proofs for litho jobs.” Paro Printing has grown quickly, and now employs over 60 people, with an additional 60 people in its network of print partners from across Europe. To realise the next phase of its business plan, the company recently installed an HP Indigo W7200 Digital Press.
Equipped for success Paro Printing’s HP Indigo W7200 Digital Press is installed to allow the company to maximise new revenue opportunities from digital book printing work and potential transpromotional direct mail. In addition, it will also enable the company to better service and add value to commercial print applications. Ideal for publications and direct marketing printing and designed for fast paced production environments such as Paro Printing, the HP Indigo W7200 Digital Press is a roll-fed liquid electrophotographic printing (LEP) dual-engine solution, for high-volume short-run and variable-data printing. With an in-line priming capability, the press is compatible with virtually any standard offset or publishing media, enabling use of lower-cost substrates for enhanced profit opportunity, and can produce up to seven million A4-size colour images or 30 million monochrome A4 images per month. “The choice of the HP Indigo W7200 Digital Press was due, in part, to a very strong existing relationship with HP, but also because of our belief in the product to deliver what our customers need – optimum quality, high speed, added value, short run colour books and personalised marketing materials,” said Van den Hurk. Paro Printing specifically liked the fact that the HP Indigo W7200 Digital Press was ‘an all-in-one’ system, suitable for multiple applications. The company also recognised that the press’s wider 317 mm x 980 mm image area enables production of book covers and dust jackets that are too large for the sheet-fed presses. This means the whole book, including book block and cover, can be produced with consistent quality on HP Indigo presses and hard covers with dust jackets or image-wraps are no longer a problem.
Pioneering digital book services Van den Hurk continues: “For books, the HP Indigo W7200 enables us to perfectly match the cover and inside content. Its ability to provide cost effective mono block production, as well as duplex printing on both sides of the substrate, was critical to meeting the speed demands of this market, as well as benefiting from mono plus four- or five-colour printing.” Paro Printing is already using its HP Indigo W7200 Digital Press to provide ‘on-demand’ book printing to customers such as Blurb. With easy-to-use, online, drag-and-drop book design software, Blurb enables anyone, to create professional-quality books, from any location. Once the print volumes from Blurb started to increase, Paro realised that manual finishing and handling processes involved in manufacturing single-copy books would become a barrier to success. It was clearly necessary to automate the finishing process whilst retaining the flexibility that the client needed to produce multiple book formats with many cover options, eliminating errors and reducing costs. After investigating the available solutions, Van den Hurk found that no existing off-the shelf solution could achieve this aim. He teamed up with an expert in product manufacturing systems and formed a company called Book Factory Systems Ltd. (BFS) to develop the systems he needed. The BFS system includes a number of innovative, automated cutting and handling solutions to ensure each book and its cover are printed and brought together with no manual intervention. The books are then delivered to the appropriate finishing station to be bound, packed and dispatched. Paro Printing also added an inline BFS laminator to the press, increasing the speed of production and enabling its customers to react quicker to market demands.
Looking to the future “The transpromotional market is likely to be the next big application in the digital transformation. However, the key to this market is data. Companies wishing to sell or use transactional mail to promote and carry their messaging, need to have a good database,” said Van den Hurk. According to Paro Printing, publishers also face a similar problem. While digital printing lessens the risk of book publishing and helps to reduce book miles, many publishers do not have a direct relationship with their readers, and rely on retailers for direct customer communication, display of retail marketing and subsequent re-run orders. Data and data accuracy is widely recognised as being crucial to the future of successful marketing activity. Because of this, Paro Printing is developing its service offering to help its customers better manage their customer relationships, and maximise sales opportunities. Van den Hurk concludes: “Marketing ourselves as a solution provider for the whole supply chain, we gather partners and suppliers around us that we can trust. With no intermediaries or third parties, we enjoy a direct customer relationship, which we believe provides a far superior service – but this also means that we are directly accountable for every job. “For us, HP and its technology is tried and tested and ideally suited to our business. Utilising the benefits of the HP Indigo W7200 Digital Press to better support existing customers, we are also really excited about its ability to open further doors.”
About HP HP creates new possibilities for technology to have a meaningful impact on people, businesses, governments and society. The world’s largest technology company, HP brings together a portfolio that spans printing, personal computing, software, services and IT infrastructure to solve customer problems. More information about HP (NYSE: HPQ) is available at http://www.hp.com.