Durban-based Dipco (Digital Imaging Processing Company), an established digital printing company and Xerox partner, has launched a new self-publishing service called Digniti to encourage local authors and individuals to share their stories and passions in print.
Dipco was founded in 1990 as an X-ray digitising service and architectural software supplier before focusing on digital printing with some of the first Xerox machines in the country. Co-founder and owner-architect Yusuf Patel was introduced to digital printing by Cassim Khan, an authorised Xerox dealer in Durban, with the purchase of their first DocuColor 250 printer and upgrading later to the Xerox Colour 560. Patel says the digital printing industry has undergone a meandering transformation in recent years, and the Covid crisis forced many smaller businesses to re-evaluate their operating models.
“Our company has always been about offering a service,” says Patel. “Anyone can go to a copy bureau to make prints, but there aren’t too many companies offering bespoke, design-to-print services for individuals and smaller companies, and that’s a latent market for us.”
Dipco further upgraded its colour press to the Xerox Colour C70 from Altron Document Solutions three years ago, and more recently installed a Xerox Primelink B9100 to support its newest service offering: self-publishing.
Patel says the recent acquisition has been a game changer. “Even a few years ago, we realised that low-volume, on-demand book printing was going to be too expensive using a colour press, and so we needed a solution to significantly reduce the click cost to make self-publishing a commercially viable service,” says Patel.
“With the combination of Xerox’s outstanding Xerox Colour C70 Press and the addition of the Xerox Primelink B9100, we can now offer short-run books to independent authors for far less than the cost of litho printing, with a turnaround of days rather than weeks.”
The Xerox Primelink B9100 is a production-ready monochrome printer, copier and scanner that features Xerox-developed 32-laser VCSEL print technology to produce true high-definition (2 400×2 400dpi) text and images, consistent print densities and neutral greys. It includes monitoring and automated toner density adjustments with SIQA for defect-free output, and automated technologies that keep sheets on track at high speeds, even with heavier, lighter or longer stocks, reducing jams and ensuring output accuracy.
Mahmood Vawda, who runs the print room and has been in the print business since the 1970s, appreciates the change to digital print. Fathima Paruk, who is currently studying for her master of arts in the field of publishing studies through Wits University, joined the company to launch the Digniti self-publishing service.
“People sitting at home or finding themselves out of work have so many interesting stories to tell, and self-publishing is not only an exciting way for them to get their stories out to a broader audience, but also to generate some income from a low start-up cost,” says Paruk.
“Think of all the unwritten and unpublished recipe books out there, all the family histories, all the company histories – the list is virtually endless,” she says. “Not only that, there’s a much larger, untapped market in this country, indigenous language books, that we haven’t even started exploring properly because the incentive to invest and produce these types of books hasn’t really been there.
“This is just the tip of the iceberg of what we feel we can offer through Digniti – and it’s not just printing, it’s all the other services involved in publishing a successful book: proofreading, layout, cover design and marketing. We’re offering all of these options in one holistic service, along with Xerox’s industry-standard printing technology that creates professional end products.”
When was the last time you walked into a print shop and were able to create your own, personally labelled bottle of olive oil?
Patel says that aside from Digniti, the company has also branched out into personalised gifting.
“When was the last time you walked into a print shop and were able to create your own, personally labelled bottle of olive oil? With the technology we now have, along with our design and finishing team, that’s exactly what we offer. The profit is not in printing labels, it’s in creating a unique, personal product and experience that customers can’t get anywhere else. This is the future of printing, and that’s exactly where we’re heading.”
For more information on Digniti self-publishing or to find out about Dipco’s range of personalised gift products, contact Yusuf Patel on 082 786 3707 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You can find out more about Xerox’s range of industry-leading colour and monochrome printers from Salim Karreem, senior specialist and key account manager, Altron Document Solutions Durban, on 031 580 7600.
About Altron Document Solutions
Altron Document Solutions (ADS) is Africa’s leading document management technology and services company, and the largest Xerox distributor in the world. It is the authorised Xerox distributor in 26 sub-Saharan African countries, offering the complete range of Xerox document equipment, software solutions and services. ADS forms part of JSE-listed Altron Limited.
Xerox makes every day work better. We are a workplace technology company building and integrating software and hardware for enterprises large and small. As customers seek to manage information across digital and physical platforms, Xerox delivers a seamless, secure and sustainable experience. Whether inventing the copier, Ethernet, the laser printer or more, Xerox has long defined the modern work experience. Learn how that innovation continues at xerox.com.
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