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All about HUL, MOS, Pragati, Prabhat and BMPA - The Noel D'cunha Sunday Column

19 September 2014

Opportunities come in many varieties.

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Take for instance, the marketing campaign of HUL for its oral care brand Pepsodent. HUL has got vendors to wrap bhelpuri in leaflets featuring Pepsodent ad. The green coloured leaflet has children’s drawings and messages about brushing teeth and fighting germs.

If all the vendors of food vegetables and groceries in India use printed promotional wrappings instead of plastic, it will be a huge benefit for commercial print.

Most print companies work with MNC customers and should push this idea with them.

It’s an opportunity for the taking. Will the print companies and print associations push this?

MOS: A new path

Mehul Desai, managing director of MOS, says, “There was never a lull, we were working and building our capabilities. We were looking to introduce new technology to improve our workflow and turnaround time.” Five years ago, MOS had 15 customers. That number has gone up. “That has been the strength of MOS,” says Desai.

He adds, “Our investment strategy, and our sales and marketing strategy are all driven by what our customers need and in the direction in which our customer is moving.”

Click this link to read Desai's interview 

Pragati: Pushing the envelope

Pragati Offset installed two new seven-colour plus coater Komori presses recently. It also implemented an Esko solution called Equinox, which is an ECG (expanded colour gamut) solution. The solution uses fixed ink set selectively for jobs with spot colours, which can be simulated by colour gamut of seven colours.

Harsha Paruchuri of Pragati saw merit in the Equinox technology, which converts packaging graphics from CMYK and spot colour to a seven-colour process. Paruchuri highlights a recent wedding card job, which included reproducing an MF Husain painting with rich oranges and blues, was printed flawlessly using Equinox. This is one of the reasons why Pragati went into installing two new seven-colour plus coater Komori presses recently. "An additional unit provides flexibility. The company already prints six-colour jobs and an additional colour would improve the quality and consistency," says Paruchuri.

Komori, Mitsubishi, Ryobi and Provin

In my last Sunday's Column, I had mentioned how offset press manufacturers have had a torrid 2013 as orders vanished and sales declined. Vinay Kaushal of Provin Technos, representing Mitsubishi Ryobi sheetfed presses in India, corrected some of the numbers.

Kaushal says, “We did not install a single unit of new Mitsubishi press in 2013. Article shows 14 units. Similarly, 12 units of Ryobi’s were installed in 2013 and shown are four.” 

I stand corrected.  

Meanwhile, Komori has been having a good run with 27 multi-colour press installations since January 2014 (as updated on 22 September 2014), some of them in Bengaluru, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Hyderabad, and parts of Maharashtra and Kerala. Four more presses have been shipped from Komori, Japan. The installations will begin next month.

Sheetfed at Prabhat 

Pune’s Prabhat Printing Works is a 70-year old company and a Ryobi customer. There’s been a flurry of investment in presses in Pune since 2005 – from 24 four-colour to 160 now. Prabhat Printing Works stayed put. 

Alok Munot of Prabhat, says, mushrooming of new printing presses has increased competition. And even though an investment is called for to cater to the print demand, he is wary of making investment. “Clients still come to us and we print for them. But I do not see any point in investing further. If there’s extra work, I can always get it done from one of the printers around our plant, without a sweat,” he says. 

Incidentally, Prabhat was the PrintWeek India Small Printer of the Year Award in 2012. Thanks to the pictures of this Award being circulated, Alok Munot met his wife. As they say, some marriages are made in heaven. Others at the PWI Awards.

PS: I sign off the Sunday Column, wishing the STB chairman, Faheem Agboatwala, a happy swearing in ceremony as the new president of the BMPA on 24 September. May he (and his hand-picked managing committee team) take the BMPA to bigger success in its diamond jubilee year. One of the first things they can do is look at the HUL concept.

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