The new additions on the Manroland roster are Nextgen Printers who shall have two presses in their stable. Dargan added, “There is the first 700 Evolution which will be installed at Jash Packaging.”
So, things are generally looking bullish. In July, the Manroland sheetfed parent company Langley Holdings has said group performance was, “on the whole, satisfactory although its press manufacturing operation was slightly behind target at the half year.”
A print industry veteran, Neeraj Dargan who has been associated with the brand since the Indo European days, said, “We have over 350 printing units of the new generation presses installed in India plus the older presses like Parva, Rekord and Favorite which are in numerous numbers.” The key Manroland clients in India are Borkar Packaging, International Print o Pac, Ajanta Offset and Packaging, TCPL, Parksons Packaging, Kwality Offset and Bhabani Offset.
Today, the most popular Manroland configurations in India are two colour perfectors, two colour coater, six or more colours with coater for conventional and UV applications. Dargan explained, “The primary reason is all our presses can handle stock thickness from 0.04 mm to 1.00 mm board. Our perfectors are single cylinder perfectors. These are convertible to all front or front and back combinations.” He added, “The Manroland combi-presses can produce conventional or UV jobs and hence they are much more flexible with a range of quick change options to boost productivity and print quality with inline enhancements and online quality control options available for various press models.”
On the technical front, Dargan felt, the Indian buyers are becoming “more open to new technology and automation”. He felt, Indian print firms are opting for “a lot of inline options which was not the case before. Also buyers are thinking more like European printers now like having a coater before the printing units or UV, etc which can give a finished sheet with high gloss, drip off varnish in one pass instead of going for multiple pass print runs.”
The trends include adaptation and upgradation of technology in the smaller centres where the cost of infrastructure is comparatively low as new plants requires a larger land-base.
As of now the Manroland team in India is focussing on the packaging segment and majority of our installations are in the smaller centres across India. For this purpose, there is a team of 12 technicians based out of New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai and Kolkata.
When asked, where he sees the sheetfed offset business in five years’ time, Dargan replied, “It is going to continue but I expect that the Indian buyer will opt for more automation. Also I see the large format presses becoming more popular in the coming years.”