Rahul Print O Pack clocks 64 million impressions in 14 months on its new Heidelberg

This is a story of how the decision to invest in a Heidelberg machine changed the fortunes of Delhi-based print service provider. This is also the story of Ajay Soni, who step-by-step carved a niche for himself

10 Jun 2019 | By Rahul Kumar

(r) Ajay Soni with his team at Rahul Print O Pack

Ajay Soni started initially with freelancing jobs in the ’90s, then in 2007, he established a finishing/ binding unit offering services in books and commercial jobs, called Rahul Print O Pack, named after his son. In 2010, he invested in real estate and in 2013, constructed multi-floor facility comprising of 15,000-sqft constructed area.

The real turning point, however, came in 2018, when Soni finally decided to invest in a printing press — a new Heidelberg Speedmaster CS 92 four-colour sheetfed offset printing press along with the Heidelberg Suprasetter thermal CTP.

Soni says it was a big leap since until then the company used to outsource its production, except post-press. And he settled down on Heidelberg because until then all its outsourced jobs were printed on the German machine.

“It was our first choice from day one,” says Soni. “Heidelberg is best for consistent quality. Plus, it helps us differentiate us as the segment is dominated by Japanese players.”

In one year, Rahul Print O Pack printed around 55-million impressions while the global average for Heidelberg customers is 20-million impressions per annum. “Since the installation in February 2018, we have printed more than 64 million impressions,” says Soni.

And this helps. “I’m in the business for the last two decades but I have been dependent on outsourcing. I have found that on-time delivery, client servicing and quality production are the keys to sustain and grow in the market,” he adds.

Today, Rahul Print O Pack specialises in short-run books. “The run length of 75%of our jobs varies between 3,000 and 7,000,” he says.

Working in a 12-hour shift, Rahul converts around 2,000-tonnes of paper and board per annum. Soni says, “We have produced up to 146,000 sheets in a 12-hour shift. It is our maximum print production in a single shift.”

He added that the company has also produced 150 titles for one of our clients, in one month, averaging five to six titles per day. In another achievement, the company produced 25,000 books in five days on the occasion of Diwali. It was a two-colour job of 364 pages.

Today, Soni says, his company is in a better place. “Earlier, we were using the excess capacity of Okhla. But long could we sustain like that? Now, consolidation has happened and everything is in-house. Now, we have better control on quality, production is fast and dependency is zero,” he says.

One thing that Soni doesn’t want to compromise is quality control. He says as of now, quality control is manual and a team of two checks each and every job. During peak season, the company hires a quality control expert.

The company, which recorded 10% growth last year, is now planning to add a digital printing production engine to its fleet and another Speedmaster is on its way to Rahul Print O Pack

Ajay Soni with his Family