01 Apr 2020

Caldera to show new version of FLOW+ at SGIA LAS VEGAS

Caldera Flow

The newest version of FLOW+ by Caldera to be shown at SGIA

FLOW+, the first Workflow software which interacts directly with the RIP spooler, will be displaying enhanced features at SGIA Las Vegas.

Caldera developed this business and production management software+ to help its clients and print shop owners access all the information from all the departments of the company: sales, production, finishing, logistics, accounting…

FLOW+ is a complete Wide Format Business Workflow solution, which provides information and control from quote to invoice, while managing the production process (printing and finishing), inventory analysis and planning, automation of the RIP, outsourcing, delivery notes, financial statistics and accounting synchronization.

In an ongoing effort to listen to client needs and develop products suited to their everyday business needs, Caldera has already improved the 2009 SGIA Product of the Year.

  • The interaction between Flow+ and the Caldera RIP has been reinforced. Within the RIP, users have the ability to monitor the files that have already been processed by Flow+, thus permitting users to easily identify which Jobs has already been printed or finished.
  • A complete mail server is now embedded inside Flow+ server. Users now have now the ability to send quotes and purchase orders directly from Flow+ without using another webmail.
  • All the documents that the system can provide (quotes, invoices, PO, production reports …) are now 99% customizable. Flow+  gives you the ability to have multiple templates for Quote, PO, Invoice …
  • The flexibility and fluidity of the Jobtracker has been enhanced. Full Jobs or parts of a Job can be returned to a previous step.
  • The ‘bridge system’ (between Flow+ and other software) is now improved and customisable

EFI quickly integrating Radius Software into MIS product portfolio

Efi

Following the recent close of the Radius Solutions acquisition, EFI, a world leader in customer-focused digital printing innovation, today announced it has already begun integrating the Radius packaging software into its leading portfolio of print management solutions.

EFI has rebranded the product name from PECAS Vision to EFI Radius to align with the naming structure of its other MIS offerings. EFI will continue with the current development structure and product roadmap. From a physical standpoint, EFI will maintain Radius offices in the U.S. and Europe.

EFI Radius software is also being added to the displays at upcoming company and industry events. The Radius Solutions North America Users Conference is taking place next week in Chicago (July 21-23), and features EFI President Fred Rosenzweig and Jetrion GM Dr. Kenneth Stack as speakers. Rosenzweig will address ways to build customer intimacy by developing a culture of customer-driven product development and service. Stack will speak about the increasing market demand for short run label printing, the benefits of Jetrion's solutions and the digital economics that make it affordable.

In the Fall, Radius will be showcased alongside the award-winning Jetrion label printers in the EFI booth at the Labelexpo Americas show (Chicago, Sept. 14-16) and among the full suite of EFI solutions at Graph Expo 2010 (Chicago, Oct. 3-6).

"All of these exciting changes mean that our customers and prospects now have access to the worldwide resources and expertise of EFI. In particular, they will have access to many more applications from EFI that will integrate to Radius products and help drive customer connectivity and profitability," said David Taylor, general manager of EFI Radius, formerly president and CEO of Radius Solutions. "At the same time, it's 'business as usual,' as I remain at the helm and the Radius product and support teams remain in place to serve our customers. We're thrilled to officially be a part of the EFI family."

"The Radius user base is excited about new possibilities with the increased resources and broad range of products that EFI brings to the table," said Dennis Linnevers, manager of application development at Multi-Color Corporation and also president of the Radius user committee.

Radius software is part of the Advanced Professional Print Software (APPS) business unit of EFI. The company intends to integrate a number of its products with EFI Radius, including Jetrion, VUTEk, Fiery, Digital StoreFront, PrintFlow and Auto-Count. The Radius acquisition further strengthens EFI's growing product portfolio of software tools, UV inkjet digital presses and inks, and MIS solutions for the packaging market, which is one of the largest printing markets in the world.

SCA Packaging selects EskoArtwork technology with renewed ArtiosCAD agreement

Esko

SCA Packaging, a leading European provider of customer-specific packaging solutions, has renewed its investment in EskoArtwork (www.esko.com) technology by signing a three year maintenance contract to ensure its ArtiosCAD installations are kept up to date. The agreement underlines SCA Packaging’s strong commitment to innovative design and highlights the company’s long-term strategy of using EskoArtwork as its supplier for the structural design of packaging.

EskoArtwork solutions provide latest advances in 3D and animation

“SCA has everything it needs to meet the exacting needs of today’s customers,” says Frank Adegeest, Director Interactive Applications Software Product Group of EskoArtwork. “World-class design demands not only innovation and speed, but also the ability to display the design in 3D, in color and using animation. Our software specializes in providing these capabilities.”

By its nature, packaging requires conceptual work in the 3D world, but the production of packaging is a flat, two-dimensional process. This requires packaging designers to ‘think in 3D’ but translate their vision into a 2D graphic design file suitable for production. In the creative packaging design process, 3D visualizations of a package early in the design phase are a major advantage for design efficiency, testing and proofing. Complete 3D integration within EskoArtwork’s ArtiosCAD allows for quick prototyping of designs and presentations, eliminating communication errors and reducing review cycles and makes creating packaging extremely intuitive.

Repro India Implements Suite of EFI Solutions to Manage Growing Print Business and Scale with Future Needs

EFI logo

EFI today announced that Repro India, Ltd. of Mumbai is implementing a full suite of EFI solutions, including EFI Monarch, EFI Digital StoreFront and EFI PrintFlow, to provide an integrated management system that will keep pace with their current growth and meet future needs. Repro India offers design and prepress services, sheetfed and web offset printing, digital printing, postpress and last-mile logistics, with an annual turnover of US$60 million with more than 600 employees. Repro India produces annual reports, IT manuals, catalogues, and magazines and is one of India's largest producers of educational books for the global market.

"In order to be competitive in today's market, print service providers need to have a real-time, end-to-end, 360-degree view of their business. Our home-grown management solution had reached its limitations. We needed a modern solution and a proactive MIS partner to ensure future success, so we selected EFI," said Baiju Gujarathi, senior vice president of Repro India.

Repro India selected the EFI Monarch print MIS solution to manage its multi-plant, multi-technology business. In addition to EFI Monarch's solid reputation in the marketplace, Repro India was especially attracted by the wide range of additional integrated modules available for Monarch (such as scheduling, direct machine interface and Web storefronts) as well as the ability of the software to address international business requirements such as currency, language and taxes. The company also needed to be able to manage both digital and offset print production from a single interface, so Monarch's support of industry standards such as JDF was a critical decision factor as well.

Comments Gujarathi, "EFI Monarch is a proven, integrated solution that offers an industry best-practices framework and a wide array of add-on modules that can expand the scope of our automation over time and scale with the business. EFI also has a large scale engineering team in India, so we know any requests will be handled very responsively."

Repro India has installed EFI Monarch in both of its plants, including the shop floor data collection capability. This has given the company better control over its production operation, more flexibility in planning, and the scalability that will ensure that its systems are positioned for future growth. "We can already see improvements in productivity, and we also have job costing control in place to monitor job profitability, an extremely important capability for us," said Gujarathi.

In addition to Monarch, Repro India is piloting the Digital Storefront web-to-print platform, with two customer profiles created and beta use started. The company is also piloting the adoption of planning and scheduling practices using EFI's PrintFlow dynamic scheduling module. Next up is Auto-Count®, which will accurately track actual production with a direct machine interface to the shop floor. Repro India is also using PrinterSite® Internal to make it easier for its sales representatives around the globe to process requests for customer estimates from the field. And with PrinterSite Fulfilment, the firm will be able to integrate its fulfilment operation into the overall customer offering.

"Our promise to our customers is to manage their content using a zero inventory approach whether they require one or one million copies of books or other printed materials, whenever or wherever they are needed," concludes Baiju. "The capabilities of EFI Monarch are vital to our ability to deliver on this promise. It is improving our efficiency across the organisation, but more importantly, has been a critical factor in shifting our corporate culture to a focus on solving customer business problems which almost incidentally includes the production of print. EFI is a trusted partner we expect to work with over the long haul to ensure a comprehensive and service-oriented offering in a dynamically changing global business scenario."

Fujifilm expands support for XMF with new European centre

Fujifilm XMF

FUJIFILM Europe GmbH today announces a new European support centre for its XMF cross-media workflow. The centre will be based at Fujifilm’s UK headquarters in Bedford and is part of a global initiative to expand support for Fujifilm workflow solutions.

Despite the downturn in economic conditions over the last 6-12 months, the growing success of XMF has resulted in Fujifilm deciding to expand its support infrastructure. The new European centre will provide guidance on workflow issues and technical support for the XMF cross media workflow portfolio, and is just one of several such centres that have been established worldwide. Similar facilities have also been set up in North America and Asia, with all regional teams working closely with a newly formed Fujifilm support centre in Tokyo created as an extension to the R&D software development division.

The new European centre already has six new employees recruited in the last 12 months from the fields of prepress, print production, print IT services and print quality assurance to provide expertise on all aspects of print production, with a comprehensive internal training programme now complete.

John Davies business strategy manager, workflow solutions, FUJIFILM Europe GmbH says: “As the XMF user base expands and the features available in the XMF product range extend, we recognise that we need a dedicated software support team that can provide technical expertise across the whole XMF workflow spectrum. This expertise ranges from all aspects of print production workflow such as guidance on pre-flight, imposition and colour management, to the more complex areas of JDF and MIS connectivity, web-to-print, and the integration of offset and digital printing solutions.

"In addition to providing immediate access to product and application experts who can help solve workflow issues, by using services such as WebEx, we’ll also be able to provide remote diagnostics to further improve our customer service and response times."

Fujifilm continues to invest heavily in its workflow solutions and this newly expanded global support infrastructure is also able to monitor customer demands, feeding back new requirements to the R&D software development teams based in Japan. ”The combination of a European support infrastructure and dedicated software development teams in Tokyo means we are able to react to changing customer requirements in the most effective way” concludes Davies.

Hallmark Cards turns to Enfocus Switch for automated error-free digital workflow

Hallmark Cards

So it's not large format print, in fact most of it is not even A4, but it is digital, and the workflow aspect of the story will perhaps be of interest to some LFR readers...

 

Hallmark Cards is renowned worldwide for its greeting cards and produces thousands of new designs and cards each year. The company’s European subsidiary based in Capelle a/d IJssel, the Netherlands, has chosen Enfocus to establish a completely digital workflow. Hallmark Cards uses a customized application of Enfocus FullSwitch and PitStop Server.

With more then 3,000 new cards brought to market every year, Hallmark Cards Continental Europe had an impressive archive of traditional films. The switch to digital started in 1999 when part of the company’s projects was set-up in Quark Xpress and Adobe Photoshop. A Digital Asset Management system was implemented in 2004 to archive the enormous amount of digital files. The company switched to Adobe InDesign on Apple OSX in 2006, paving the way for a completely digitalized PDF workflow.

Sourcing a top-speed, error-free workflow
Hallmark Cards put together a team to identify a fast, automated and error-free workflow. Dejan Mladenovic, IT Manager, and Miranda Vink, Technical Support and Development Manager evaluated several prepress workflow solutions from different suppliers, but none met Hallmark Cards’ criteria. According to Mladenovic, many of these workflow solutions had too many options, which made them expensive and too time consuming to work with on a daily basis.

When Vink discovered Enfocus Switch at a trade show, it proved to be the solution that fitted the company’s needs perfectly. Plus,  Wifac PDF Diensten en Systemen, Hallmark's house supplier of software solutions, supports Switch, which was an extra advantage. "We were happy to have been able to test a free trial version so we could see what Switch could do," explains Vink. "We worked out a prototype of our preferred workflow, which was then set up in detail by PDF Diensten en Systemen and Enfocus. They offered us a customized solution for a standard price." 

Extensive control guarantees top quality
The newly established digital workflow allows Hallmark Cards to work faster and more efficiently. Enfocus FullSwitch also enables the company to support one of the critical parts of its production. Although all prepress and print preparation work is done in-house, printing is outsourced as the European subsidiary does not have its own printing department. This means perfectly controlled PDF files and a highly accurate color management system are essential. Errors can prove very expensive, plus they damage Hallmark's reputation for producing high-quality cards.

Hallmark Cards considers every card to be a separate project that must be carefully checked and proofed before it’s sent to the printer. And this is where the Enfocus solutions really prove their worth. The company combines the Enfocus FullSwitch with PitStop Server to automate the flow of all incoming and outgoing files and check them for color, overlays and fonts etc. This extensive control saves valuable time and ensures the print-ready PDF files are 100% accurate. The files are then sent for proofing to two Epson printers via FullSwitch.

Working smarter and cutting costs
"Our investment in FullSwitch has already made our operation more efficient and helped us trim costs," says Mladenovic. "After implementing the software, we saw a significant drop in the number of errors. Plus it has enabled us to produce cards faster and reduce the hours needed for manual control and fixing mistakes."

Setting up a proofing workflow with the ISO-certified Epson printers has been another huge advantage. Handling proofing in-house save costs and time. And the time savings achieved using Enfocus FullSwitch have afforded Hallmark Cards the opportunity to broaden its range of cards and develop more designs. The specialists that were previously occupied checking the hundreds of files and proofs are now concentrating on color management and in-house photography.

Streamlining production
The team at Hallmark Cards is dedicated to improving their systems and workflow - something that Enfocus FullSwitch is helping them achieve. The company’s goal is to replace hard proofing with soft proofing and use the PDF job ticket information that is incorporated in the Enfocus Certified PDF technology, the core of all Enfocus products.

One task that still requires manual work in the original InDesign file is the encoding of each card, which is different for each country and language. "We’re now implementing an automated system to imposition all the cards,” adds Vink. “And for this we prefer a customized workflow that includes encoding our cards directly in the PDF. Establishing this process makes our PDF workflow complete."