Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Future of Inkjet Printing – post drupa review

Commentary & Analysis
The Future of Inkjet Printing – post drupa review
By Sean Smyth 
Published: May 29, 2012
The inkjet printing market is valued at $33.4 billion in 2011 and forecast to grow to $67.3 billion in 2017, according to Smithers Pira, the worldwide authority on the packaging, print and paper supply chains.
According to our new study (http://www.smitherspira.com/future-of-inkjet-printing-to-2017.aspx) inkjet is growing because it provides significant advantages across many supply chains. The developments shown at drupa further cement and will accelerate more widespread adoption.
Inkjet printing is not a discrete market, and the technology is used in many diverse graphics, packaging and industrial applications using very different types of equipment and materials. Inkjet is used in textile printing, in industrial decoration for glass, ceramics, flooring and synthetic building materials. It is used in manufacturing display screens, photovoltaics and some electronic products and there is great potential for inkjet to be used as a manufacturing process for precisely applying small quantities of material in additive deposition processes.
This inherent flexibility has attracted the attention of many leading print equipment suppliers and they have invested a great deal of money to develop new printing systems, much more than in any other printing technology. The prize is not just a press sale; there is the very lucrative ink and service over the life of a press with attractive margins available on inks.
Global trends
Dynamic markets
High-volume personalisation
New market study
Sean Smyth is print consultant at Smithers Pira, the worldwide authority on the packaging, paper and print industry supply chains (www.smitherspira.com)

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Another RR Donnelley (RRD) printing plant to close

(A "heads-up" about this article came from David Brownell)

“Danbury printers leave legacy”

Article by Robert Miller
bmiller@newstimes.com; 203-731-3345
Published 11:58 a.m., Sunday, May 27, 2012

DANBURY, CT -- There is grass growing in the parking lot of RR Donnelley, the printing plant that announced last week it would close, laying off 150 workers.

It was not always that way. In its heyday, the company had more than 350 employees and was always busy.

"We ran three shifts, seven days a week,'' said James Heussner, assistant treasurer and controller of the company when it went by the name of Danbury Printing & Litho.

"That's too bad,'' Heussner, 77, said when told the plant was closing. But in a world where everything is online, printing is not thriving. Donnelley, based in Chicago, and the largest printing company in North America, has been closing plants across the continent in the last few years.

"It isn't making a lot of money,'' Heussner said from Florida, where he now lives. "And the state of Connecticut isn't making things any better with its taxes.''

The closing marks the end of a company with a history stretching back to 1931, when the Previdi family owned a printing company. It first began to grow after 1946, when Eugene Previdi bought the family business from his brother, John.

Eugene eventually changed the company name from Modern Printery to Danbury Printing & Litho.

"He added lithography to the business,'' said Eugene's son, Eugene Jr. Even after he retired, the elder Eugene went to work and ran the company's Linotype and letterpress presses.

The company grew. Instead of one shop on Thorpe Street, it added a second location near Danbury Airport, then a third on Backus Avenue.

The company's rise was the work of Cecil Previdi, also Eugene's son, who had worked in the presses since he was a teenager. A graduate of the Rochester Institute of Technology, he became the president of Danbury Printing & Litho. He invested in new technology and the best workers available.

"He'd go to RTI and get the cream of the crop,'' Eugene Previdi Jr. said of his brother.

The company consolidated its business in the Prindle Lane facility in 1978. It invested in Harris presses -- then state-of-the-art. It had nationally known clients.

"I would say our two biggest were Time-Life Books and American Express,'' said Heussner.

The company also printed materials for the Sotheby's auction house, for Avon and Reader's Digest. It had a close working relationship with Grolier Inc., the publisher with headquarters in Danbury. Danbury Printing & Litho had its own training program for printers, buyers and art directors.

"It had a great customer service department and great printers,'' Heussner said.

But in 1987, Danbury Printing & Litho suffered a huge shock when a company plane crashed in southern Wisconsin.  Cecil Previdi, then 44, was killed in the crash. In all, eight people died -- six employees of Danbury Printing & Litho and two from Webtech, an Illinois company.

Previdi's widow, Melissa, who was director of sales and marketing, took over as president. She kept the Previdi name in the company until 1994, when Banta Corp., a national printing firm, bought the Danbury plant from the Previdi family.

In 2007, RR Donnelley bought Banta.

After five years, it closed the place down -- which is terrible news for its 150 employees and an occasion for melancholy for those who knew the company in its prime.

"It was an interesting place to work," Heussner said.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

ABC Imaging releases BPOL-NG upgrade

New BPOL-NG features include multi-language support, document approval workflow, and iPhone support. Enhancements provide for a more efficient user experience navigating interface.
Washington, DC—May 24, 2012—ABC Imaging, a printing and document technology company based in Washington, DC announced today that it has released an upgrade to BlueprintOnline-Next Generation (BPOL-NG).
You can access the full press release at www.abcimaging.com, then click on press releases (it’ll be posted sometime tomorrow)

Technology Product Highlights from AIA 2012 Expo: Part 1

AECbytes Newsletter #57
May 24, 2012 (article by Dr. Lachmi Khemlani)
Article Summary
Last week, I attended the AIA 2012 Convention and Expo that was held in Washington DC from May 17 to 19. The theme of the Convention this year was “Design Connects,” and while there were a lot of interesting keynote presentations and sessions, I did not find them very compelling from an AEC technology perspective or featuring a highly reputed personality like Tom Friedman, who was one of main keynote speakers at last year’s convention. As a result, I devoted all my time at the Convention to exploring the technology products on display at the Expo, which resulted in a more detailed understanding of new products and updates. Unlike earlier AIA articles which provided a brief overview of most of the products that were on display, this two-part series of articles on the AIA 2012 Convention provides more detailed descriptions of the products and services offered by the AEC technology vendors that I visited.
In the current article, we will explore a new pedestrian simulation software integrated into Vectorworks that seemed to be nicely representative of using computational power for more advanced and intelligent tasks, the enhancements in Bluebeam’s new release, Revu 10, for PDF generation, review, and collaboration, and the many enhancements in ArchiCAD 16 that is being released by Graphisoft later this month,. We will also look at the several new iPad apps that were on display this year, suggesting that this new medium is taking off in AEC. The second article on the AIA Convention that will be published next week will look at what was shown at the AIA 2012 Expo by established companies like Bentley, Autodesk, Trelligence, IES, Cadalog, and Axium; newcomers to the show such as Smart Technologies, SmartBIM, and Archability; and some additional highlights relevant to AEC technology.
Article Link

Article on Motley Fool about American Reprographics Co (ARC)

Posted 10:40AM 05/24/12 
American Reprographics (NYS: ARC) reported earnings on May 8. Here are the numbers you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway

For the quarter ended March 31 (Q1), American Reprographics missed estimates on revenue and beat expectations on earnings per share.

Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue dropped slightly and GAAP loss per share improved.

Gross margin dropped, operating margin improved, and net margin dropped.

Revenue details

American Reprographics reported revenue of $103.6 million. The three analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ foresaw sales of $106 million on the same basis. GAAP-reported sales were 2.8% lower than the prior-year quarter's $106.5 million.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

EPS details

EPS came in at $0. The two earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ predicted -$0.01 per share. GAAP EPS were -$0.11 for Q1, against -$0.08 per share for the prior-year quarter.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.

Margin details

For the quarter, gross margin was 30.8%, 50 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 3.7%, 290 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was -4.7%, 130 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter.

Looking ahead

Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $113 million. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $0.01.

Next year's average estimate for revenue is $431.1 million. The average EPS estimate is $0.09.

Investor sentiment

The stock has a four-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 566 members rating the stock outperform and 36 members rating it underperform.

Among 202 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 192 give American Reprographics a green thumbs-up, and 10 give it a red thumbs-down.

Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on American Reprographics is outperform, with an average price target of $9.17.

Over the decades, small-cap stocks like American Reprographics have provided market-beating returns, provided they're value-priced and have solid businesses.