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KBA pre-owned presses are a popular choice in India

30 October 2017

There is a battle raging. German major Koenig & Bauer has rejected the findings of the Smithers Pira report that grade the productivity of used sheetfed presses, while arch-rival Heidelberg, which has sponsored the report, is stoutly defending the findings.

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The Smithers Pira white paper looked at used sheetfed presses from five manufacturers and found that Heidelberg presses produced higher volumes of print annually than competitor machines on average. It stated that “the profit opportunity for Heidelberg machines is significantly higher than for competitive models.”

However, Klaus Schmidt, Koenig & Bauer director of marketing and corporate communications, denounced the findings. He told PrintWeek India, “It seems that the Smithers Pira study has been ordered as a white paper with the target to reach the published result. The number of prints per year is no clear indicator for the productivity of a press. It depends on the press configuration (number of colours, inline finishing equipment, straight or perfecting), structure of the print jobs produced (long or short-runs, standard or sensitive substrates, good enough or high-end quality), the qualification and motivation of the press crew and the business model of the print shop (one, two or three shifts).”

Vimal Surana of Indo Polygraph (Indian representative of KBA Sheetfed) agrees with Klaus Schmidt's comments.

So, why are KBA secondhand offset presses so popular in India? Instead of posing this question to Schmidt, we asked Vimal Surana of Indo Polygraph, who has been handling the KBA roster in India.

Surana replied, “Basically because of price advantage. Also, all automation are available in the KBA presses as standard.”

He added, “KBA uses peripherals and components of most popular proven brands and the spares are available directly from OEM manufacturers like FESTO, -Omron, ABB etc.”

So, the cost of ownership is the lowest.

Surana mentioned, “Indo Polygraph provides service backup just like we do for a new machine. Plus, we guarantee 100% complete and functional presses, which are available ex-stock, thus providing excellent ownership experience.”

KBA’s key customers from western India are Ajanta Print Arts, Akar, Indigo Press, Deluxe Packaging, TM Printers, Vyoma Graphics and many others.

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KBA Rapida 106-6+L installed at Ajanta Print Arts 

According to Surana, the KBA Rapida 72/74 five/six colour presses with UV coater are "the popular frontrunners". Surana said, “The KBA presses are capable to run various substrates including metPET, foil, plastic, etc up to 1.2mm on Rapida 105/106. The customers’ profiles include commercial printers, security printers, playing cards and packaging printers and so on.”

One feather on the Indo Polygraph hat has been Ajanta Print Arts who purchased “five pre-owned KBA presses back to back” from Rapida 72 to 104 to 106. The company prints on substrates for FMCG, cosmetics, pharma, chocolates, bakery, textile, liquor packaging and playing cards as well.

Meanwhile, Indo Polygraph also represents Perfecta GmbH, Germany, Gietz AG, Switzerland, Blumer AG, Switzerland, MBO Maschinenbau Oppenweiler Binder GmbH, Germany.

Surana shared with PrintWeek India that “over 300 brand new Perfecta machines have been sold and there are over 3,000 used machines are running in India.” He added, “We have sold three brand new Gietz ROFO 1020 to foil stamping presses to Uflex, and Blumer Label and card production Lines as well.”

When queried, where Indo Polygraph sees the print business in five years’ time, Surana replied, “We anticipate steady growth in the sale of used KBA presses.”

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