Exhibitor Speak: Rasmussen, area sales manager, Tresu and Arun Gandhi, Capital Graphic Supplies

Tresu’s doctor blades are expensive. Rasmussen, area sales manager, Tresu and Arun Gandhi, Capital Graphic Supplies, explain why they are also the best.

01 Nov 2014 | By Noel D'Cunha

As the label market grows, especially as the label market world-wide recovers from the set-back in 2007, there has been a demand, not only for fancy printing presses, but also for ancillary products. Tresu, the manufactures of chambered doctor blade systems, along with a range of other ancillary products, want to capitalise on this demand, though the road ahead will not be smooth.

“Unfortunately, people still are not aware of Tresu’s chambered doctor blade solution. We are realising more and more that we need to educate the Indian market,” said Arun Gandhi, Capital Graphic Supplies, the Indian representatives of Tresu. “We started serving the Indian label market some two years ago and this is our second Labelexpo India show. We have supplied products to Indian companies like APL, Multitec and Alpna. It’s an introductory phase for us with Tresu.”

On display at the Labelexpo is Tresu Flexiprint Reservoir, used in the label industry because ink consumption is low. “So, a system without a pump is considered to be a good economical system to run,” Gandhi added.

How easy or difficult is it to work with Indian OEMs, when compared to European OEMs? “There are, of course, cultural differences. For that reasons, we have Capital Graphic Supplies to have a direct business with the OEMs in India,” said Steen Rasmussen, area sales manager, Tresu.

As OEM suppliers, Capital Graphic already has a number of products from companies like Nilpeter, Mark Andy, and others, in their portfolio. Where does Tresu fit in? “We, as a company, represent print finishing. You can say that everything that we do is print finishing,” said Gandhi. Tresu also has PrintGuard Plus, which is used for transfer jackets. “Transfer jackets for Heidelberg presses are supplied by us,” he added.

Tresu also supplies to Nilpeter, Mark Andy, Heidelberg, etc, and according to Gandhi, Tresu is a strong OEM supplier. “So for us, it is a perfect fit. We are trying to build up a business with Tresu products,” he said.

The target obviously would be the Indian printers for consumables. “For OEMs, we are trying to spread the knowledge that they change over to a chambered doctor blade anilox system. We have supplied the first lot of systems, and things are now moving smoothly,” Gandhi said.

Coming to the technology, what are the advantages of using chambered doctor blade system over the conventional ones? It’s simple. When you use the chamber, you have uniformity in print. At the same time, it eases handling of inking system. “It is much cleaner than using the open system or the old fashioned system. So, there is less spill. And the job change is much easier and faster, because you push a button and it cleans itself.” Rasmussen said.

What are the savings in terms of percentage? “It depends on which system you are using. If you take the top notch systems, then we would say you would be able to maximise your capacity by around 25%, and that’s a lot,” said Rasmussen.

The system makes the operation more efficient, because the changeover time saved can push productivity. “So, when you look at return on investment, you have to consider this aspect of enhanced productivity, which allows you to sell the extra capacity and earn more. The return on investment will be within less than a year,” Gandhi added.

Gandhi said all latest machines from Heidelberg and Manroland, would have the Tresu systems. In label printing, every Nilpeter or Mark Andy have Tresu systems. “We also supply to Gallus, Gidue, Omet and MPS,” Rasmussen said.

Convincing customers, especially Indian label converters, continues to remain an issue. “Converters have started understanding the system, and are looking at it. Sometimes, technology has its constraints and it comes in the form of price. If you have to retrofit it, our price is a constraint,” Gandhi said.

How simple is it, moving over from conventional to the Tresu system? Simply, it is a remove and replace kind. “Of course, some customers use their own suspension systems, but we prefer to have our suspension systems, which allow us control. We also know that if something goes wrong, we have only ourselves to blame,” said Rasmussen. “But as Arun says, it’s very much education of the market. Print is a very conservative market. They take a look at the Tresu system, they say it looks very smart, and that’s it.”

According to Gandhi, it’s the same story with any new product. “We have worked with Hunkeler, Cito, etc, and it has taken us 15 years to make these a brand in India. Tresu is a world leader, but in India, everybody is using it indirectly, but we think that once we participate in exhibitions such as this, we would be able to communicate its advantages,” he said.

Perhaps another reason why converters are staying away from doctor blades is the steep price. This is something Gandhi agrees. Now, what the sellers are doing to circumvent pricing? “We are trying to educating our company. At the same time, educating the converter is also important. Buying some Chinese doctor blades at one-third the price is not a good bet, because it will work only till a point. The sooner they use a better system, the better it will be; buying a system that will cost little more, but last 15 years,” Gandhi said.

On the other hand, would it make more sense to manufacture the system in India, allowing the manufacture to control costs and make it more acceptable to the Indian converters? Rasmussen said this is not an alternative. “We would want to be 100% in control of how the chambers are manufactured because these are precision equipment. I do not say it will not happen in India, but if we do move production to India, we will not be 100% sure every time,” he added.