Print finishing can transform a low-value piece of printed paper into something of appeal and value, determining whether it will end up in a drawer (or even worse, in the bin) or on either a coffee table or a desk.
For a print service provider (PSP) everything comes down to numbers, especially when — thanks to the pandemic — there has been a dramatic reduction in print orders. The current economic climate dictates that businesses need to innovate and as printers, it is necessary to remind brands of the value that print can bring to the table, thus making it relevant once again. This is where print finishing comes into the equation.
Altron Document Solutions is a proud distributor of Duplo International’s wide range of finishing equipment in South Africa, where they have found that commercial printers, in-house print shops and pay-for-print businesses are looking to broaden the scope of their products and services, while also looking to automate processes as far as possible within their businesses.
“Not only is it cost-effective for PSPs to automate their processes but with tighter deadlines coupled with ever-increasing expectations from their customers, having a fully automated workflow simplifies the process and makes it easier to reduce lead times,” said Keith Knott, senior manager: sales at Altron Document Solutions’ Production Systems division.
Duplo International fits in precisely with the scope of what Altron Document Solutions does. “With Duplo International we have found a company with the same ethics and viewpoint to ours,” Knott said. “They are an internationally recognised company with a reputable brand.
“Being a distributor of Duplo International’s vast range of equipment and products has enabled us to offer our customers a complete turnkey solution: from printing the job and managing the workflows correctly, all the way through to the finishing of whatever they have on the printing press,” he explained.
With the variety of Duplo equipment to choose from, PSPs can focus on anything from the cutting of documents to creasing, folding, collating and binding. Keith noted that lately more PSPs are venturing into the packaging and labelling market, which Duplo has made easier. “Quantities for packaging and labels have become less, while customers demand a quicker turnaround time,” he said. “Duplo makes it possible to tick all of these boxes, while adding personalisation as a means of adding to the bottom line.”
Printers can set up the size and dimensions as well as the overall look and feel of the product. They are then able to print the job and send it to their Duplo machine for finishing. This solution is changing the way commercial printers expand into this market, being able to test the waters by starting on a small scale and then determine if doing it on a larger scale be a viable addition to their business model.
The pandemic has made it necessary for PSPs to implement either short time or retrenchment as a means of reducing operating expenditure and thus ensure the longevity of their businesses. The challenge, however, is that there is still work that needs to be done, which Duplo equipment is able to address, by making it possible for them to automate their businesses.
“Our customers are seeing a huge increase in profits because they can invoice their customers sooner given the automation the Duplo products brought to their print process. Bringing Duplo equipment into their businesses has allowed them to upsell on print orders while being able to have quicker lead times. This, in turn, has allowed for them to invoice the job in a shorter space of time,” said Knott. “Where it previously took up to a week to complete an order, our customers can have it ready in an hour or two, depending on the size of the print run and the complexity of the finishing required,” he added. “Customers are able to have business card orders ready and boxed in a personalised box within an hour.”
Big commercial printers are now able to quickly merge litho and digital work into bound books, all via an automated process.
While Duplo International focuses on the medium-sized PSP, there is a niche within every commercial printer for Duplo equipment, be it a large enterprise or a print-for-pay copy shop. Duplo equipment is robust, with a reputation that spans many years.
With Altron Document Solutions, businesses have the reassurance that they are dealing with an equally reputable distributor that is committed to being a provider of full-service solutions to their customers, while constantly seeking new ways to raise the bar.
Together, they have allowed commercial printers to broaden the scope of what they do, through being able to diversify into other arenas and innovate new products and services, while chartering a course during these uncertain times.
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 Allied Electronics Corporation (Altron). For more information, please read the latest news about Altron Document Solutions or connect to the company via LinkedIn.
Xerox Holdings 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 and more, Xerox has long defined the modern work experience. Learn how that innovation continues at xerox.com.
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