Roland DG has reported that its 30” UV-curable integrated printer/cutter, the VersaUV LEC-300, was the main attraction at Sign & Digital UK 2009, while its engraving solutions also drew plenty of interest. The VersaUV is the first UV-curable inkjet printer in the world to integrate printing and cutting functions and many visitors to the show had come to see for themselves examples of the machine’s tactile output such as Braille, faux animal skin and leather.
Despite an apparent drop in visitor numbers at the show, the company received a healthy number of leads across its product range and it welcomed the opportunity to highlight the versatility of wide format inkjet technology at the show. The company’s stand had over seventy different applications on display, including window graphics, personalised musical instruments, garments and even a vinyl wrapped snow board. Between the Roland DG stand and those of its dealers, every Roland DG printing, print & cut and engraving machine was available to buy at the show.
Following the show, Roland DG (UK)’s Head of Product Development, Brett Newman, said: “In my view, the market has maintained some of its buoyancy, despite the recession, because businesses in this sector are combating the downturn by diversifying their service portfolio in order to keep their output high. This is highlighted by the interest in engraving this year - engraving is a high value service, yet the technology required is available at a relatively low capital cost. The live engraving demonstrations were very popular and I think many came away with the realisation that the machinery is easy to use - with many skills transferrable from wide format printing and cutting - and will start making them money almost instantly.
“While visitor numbers seemed to be down, I feel that those who did venture out were serious about investigating investment opportunities. In general, visitors spent longer than usual on the stand discussing the products with our technical team, which I think is a reflection of how carefully new capital investments are being considered at the moment. Even so, it’s still difficult not to get carried away when you consider that some of our printers will pay for themselves in a matter of months when used for just four hours a day.”
Beyond printing and engraving, Roland DG also had value-adding personalisation solutions on display such as Xpres’s Gem Tec system for rhinestone personalisation of garments and Eurodrop’s multi-colour doming process for both fabric and printed items.
Concluded Mr Newman: “Considering the challenges that the market and the economy as a whole is facing Sign & Digital UK 2009 has to be classed as a success for Roland DG and its dealers. We were there to showcase the money-making opportunities presented by our products and all of our dealers reported sales over the three days. The show provides an excellent opportunity to demonstrate to customers, both old and new, the versatility and sheer range of profitable applications that our machinery is capable of”.