ProCo Installs UK's First HP SmartStream Director

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Powerful solution streamlines workflow and drives web-to-print operations

LONDON, England, 30 June 2009 - HP announced today that ProCo, of Sheffield, has installed the first HP SmartStream Director end-to-end-workflow solution in the UK.

HP SmartStream Director is part of the HP SmartStream Solutions Portfolio, an open end digital workflow environment, developed to meet the needs of a broad range of market segments and applications including commercial, publications, packaging, labels and inkjet web printing.

Announced at drupa 2008 and now available in EMEA, HP SmartStream Director is powered by Press-sense iWay™ platform and provides an integrated workflow solution that automates, manages, customises and optimises business and production processes from online job submission through to delivery and billing. Using industry standard formats (typically JDF), HP SmartStream Director can easily integrate with HP partner components including TEC-IT for barcode generation, DirectSmile's image generator, and finishing equipment from Duplo and Horizon.

ProCo is a modern print service provider (PSP) established in 1996, that provides comprehensive printing and fulfilment services to its customers. Employing 95 full-time staff, ProCo is a fully integrated litho, digital, direct mail and distribution provider built on a commitment to great technological solutions and great customer service.

At ProCo, HP SmartStream Director is linked directly to its three HP Indigo presses (an HP Indigo press 3050, an HP Indigo press 5000 and an HP Indigo press 5500), also to its Apogee X PDF workflow and its MIS.

"HP SmartStream Director speaks simply and directly with our MIS and production technology," Jon Bailey, sales director, ProCo, said. "What I like about  HP SmartStream Director is the openness of the platform. Integration is key - removing processes adds real value to both us and our customers, reducing costs and waste, yet increasing our route to market. HP SmartStream Director enables us to run our business in a totally different way, streamlining our operations, adding value to the clients and having a positive impact on our bottom line."

HP SmartStream Director is open and scalable and can drive multiple HP Indigo presses with full variable data printing.

One of the applications that HP SmartStream Director facilitates is web-to-print. Integrating directly with the online customer interface, orders, delivery instructions and payment information can be gathered and processed as part of a single operation. Depending on the nature of the PSP's business, web-to-print can be used for consumer applications like the printing of photobooks, greetings cards or personalised calendars, or business-to-business applications.

"Web-to-print has definitely made us more competitive," Bailey said. "As a major component of our web-to-print solution, the HP SmartStream Director workflow enables customers to track jobs, monitor progress and plan deliveries more accurately. This helps them to reduce costs without having a negative impact on our margins. It also enables us to focus on working pro actively with our customers, rather than having to chase proofs and proofs of delivery."