It didn’t take us long to determine that we could achieve a significantly higher output from our new Ricoh presses

Amnon Judah, General Manager, Prima Printing

Established in 2016, Prima Printing is the largest manufacturer of personalised consumer imaging products in Australia and New Zealand. Based in Melbourne, the company produces a range of applications including photos, photobooks and calendars. The company is part of US-based District Photo Company.

The challenge

As a result of the company’s strong growth during the past few years, pressure was mounting on its core printing infrastructure. Prima Printing General Manager Amnon Judah says it was also becoming increasingly challenging to meet customer demands in what is a very seasonal market segment.

“Our business has both peak and off-peak times, and our peak can represent 60 per cent of our annual revenues,” says Judah. “This means, if we don’t have the capacity to meet customer demand, we would end up missing out on business.”

The challenge came to a head when a detailed report was produced by Prima’s UK-based sister company. The report compared their fleet of liquid toner digital printers verses the Ricoh Pro C9110 production presses. The report examined a range of variables including capital cost, return on investment, performance, uptime, and the level of skill required for operation.

“The report clearly showed that the Ricoh production press would be a better option for us,” says Judah. “After careful consideration of all available options, we made the decision to establish a relationship with Ricoh and invest in two C9110 devices to complement our existing fleet of competitive machines.”

The solution

During the next 12 months, the Prima team ran the two Ricoh machines in parallel with the existing fleet of competitor devices to compare how well they could perform.

“It didn’t take us long to determine that we could achieve a significantly higher output from our new Ricoh presses,” says Judah. “In fact, during the review period, they became some of the highest volume devices in the world. We could see a compelling business case to replace our fleet of machines with Ricoh presses."

In 2018, Prima purchased five Pro C9210 presses, followed by another three. After retiring two of the older devices, the company now has a fleet of eight Ricoh Pro C9210 devices.

The benefits

With operations now standardised on the Ricoh devices, Prima is enjoying some significant business benefits. Electricity usage has decreased while pressroom productivity has experienced double digit improvement.

“We are able to produce as many as 7 million sheets a month during peak periods,” says Judah. “Ricoh’s broad substrate range allows us to reliably print consistent, high-quality colour outputs.”

The Ricoh printers have also been integrated with the company’s existing software platforms to reduce the need for manual intervention in print jobs. The end to end process is controlled by a bespoke ERP solution that routes work to the Ricoh printers based on job profiles and availability. Judah says the fact that the Ricoh printers don’t require a separate cooling system further reduces costs and complexity for the company.

“Ricoh has become a valuable business partner that provides the ongoing support the company requires, especially during our peak production periods,” he says. “They have been focused on our business needs and understand our particular needs.”

With all eight Ricoh printers in place, Judah says the company is considering entering the yearbook market. This is a growing area and one that is showing significant potential in both Australia and New Zealand.

“Thanks to Ricoh, we now have the capacity and cost structure to be well placed to serve our growing customer base,” he says. “We look forward to a long-lasting business relationship.”

 

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