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Garnett departs from Garnetts

2013, november 11 - 14:11

Carl Garnett, who was appointed to the role nine months ago, left the company last week.

He said the parting of ways was "by mutual agreement" and he was now looking at fresh opportunities in the industry.

"I am pursuing a couple of options that could be exciting," he said.

In a separate move Ian Maxted, who joined Garnett Dickinson Print as a sales executive at the same time as Garnett, has left to join Quad/Graphics as UK sales representative.

Maxted said: "I'm delighted to be joining Quad/Graphics it's a brilliant opportunity for me, and I'm looking forward to working with everyone there."

Garnett Dickinson chief executive Joel Dickinson could not be reached for comment at the time of writing.

The £44m-turnover family-owned publishing and printing group sold its Acorn Web Offset subsidiary to its then chief executive Nick Alexander earlier this year.


Kimber takes UK graphics lead after HP management rejig

2013, november 11 - 13:11

Having previously worked for Xerox and Kodak, Kimber joined Indigo as a sales manager just prior to its acquisition by HP in 2001. Most recently he was UK&I district manager heading up commercial sales. That position has now been filled by Graham Dove.

Kimber and Dove stepped up to their new roles on 1 November.

In his new role, Kimber will head up commercial, publishing, packaging and industrial print - in essence, HP's entire UK graphics portfolio, with the exception of Scitex, Designjet and Latex.

"My key focus will continue to be the customer - it has to be all about them and helping them to grow their businesses," said Kimber.

"Our business is about bringing added-value applications to market so that our customers can drive print through adding value, rather than just be about price, which is where a lot of the [general] market still seems to be, unfortunately."

Kimber will report to Ronen Samuel, who became vice-president and general manager of HP Indigo and Inkjet EMEA three months ago.

Kimber replaces Nancy Janes, who has been promoted to the newly created role of worldwide programmes director of strategy & market development at HP Graphics Solutions Business, responsible for Indigo, inkjet and wide-format.

Janes' role will involve utilising her sales and marketing experience of both the Indigo and wide-format parts of the business to create internal and external market development programmes to leverage the activities of HP Graphics Solutions Business and identify ways it can add value to its customers. She will also be supporting a number of initiatives at Dscoop, the HP user co-operative.

Part of her new role will also involve working with brands to replicate initiatives like Coca-Cola's ‘share a coke' campaign.

"It was a tough decision to leave the UK role, because I've genuinely loved the UK organisation and UK industry, but my leaving is driven by a desire to bring that customer focus into a worldwide role," said Janes.

"It's a brand new role and the objective is to take my operational customer experience and market experience and accelerate the analogue-to-digital transformation."

For the past three-and-a-half years, Janes has been UK&I country manager HP Indigo & Inkjet, prior to that she was UK&I large-format country manager. During her career she also spent time as European customer business development manager - in total notching up 17 years with Indigo and HP.

"I'm delighted that Ian is succeeding me in the UK, with his 12 years' experience, and that Graham, with his international accounts experience, is succeeding Ian. The team really couldn't be in better hands."

Janes will report to Juan Ignacio Calderan, vice-president strategy & market development, Graphics Solutions Business.





Essentra acquires Dakota Packaging

2013, november 8 - 14:11

UK-headquartered Essentra, which changed its name from Filtrona in June this year, bought the €15.2m-turnover business as part of a targeted growth strategy in the pharmaceutical and healthcare packaging market.

The deal follows the FTSE 250 firm's £160m acquisition in March of Contego Healthcare, now Essentra Packaging.

Dakota, which employs around 100 staff at its 7,430sqm manufacturing plant near Dublin airport, will become part of Essentra's packaging and securing solutions division. The site produces high quality cartons for the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries in Ireland.

"The acquisition of Dakota underscores our ambition to be the premier provider of creative and secure packaging solutions to our customers and end-markets of choice," said managing director of Essentra's packaging and securing solutions division, Alison Evans.

"Our plans represent a significant investment in our capabilities in Ireland and will ensure we have the best operational footprint and necessary space to meet the growing needs of the healthcare and consumer packaging industries we serve, under our new Essentra Packaging identity."

The acquisition forms part of a restructure of Essentra's Ireland operations, which looks likely to effect the closure of the firm's facility in Waterford, 160km south of Dublin, with the loss of all 50 jobs.

Evans confirmed that Essentra had yesterday entered into a 30-day consultation with employees at the plant. The company intends to centralise production in Ireland to the Dakota site.

Evans said: "It is with regret that we are entering a consultation regarding the possible closure of the Waterford site. It is in no way a reflection on the quality or commitment of our employees, but a consequence of the need to ensure we act in the best interests of our customers and other stakeholders."

Trade union Unite labeled the move "industrial vandalism".

Speaking following a meeting of Unite members in Essentra, union official Brendan Byrne said that the proposal to close the Waterford site had come as a bombshell to workers, their families and the wider local community.

"Unite is convinced that a programme of targeted investment in the plant could transform the Waterford operation into a trail blazer in the packaging sector, and we will be putting forward argument in this regard during the consultation period," he added.

"Closure of the Waterford Essentra plant would be nothing less than an act of industrial vandalism."

Essentra, headquartered in Milton Keynes, operates 42 manufacturing facilities around the world and employs around 5,500 staff globally.

York Mailing strengthens board with two appointments

2013, november 8 - 14:11

The retail flyer, media inserts and quality catalogue printer's board originally consisted of chief executive Chris Ingram and chief operating officer Mike Newbould.

However, it has now appointed private equity veteran Richard Connell as chairman following an introduction by the Business Growth Fund (BGF) Talent Network.

Connell has worked for 3i, Invesco Asset Management and Montagu Private Equity and subsequently chaired several institutionally-backed companies, including Dignity, CVS, Mercury Pharma and Cory Environmental.

His appointment follows the announcement in July that York Mailing had secured a £10m investment from the BGF in return for a minority equity stake.

York Mailing chief executive Chris Ingram told PrintWeek: "This is something the BGF likes to see as part of their investment strategy but from the original shareholders point of view is an excellent way of adding significant strength to the board."

In addition, York Mailing has appointed Judith Donovan CBE as a non-executive director. Donovan is chair of the Royal Mail Strategic Mailing Partnership and a former vice-chair of Postwatch; she founded her own marketing agency in 1982 and grew it to over 50 staff and £12.5m turnover before selling to her management in 2000.

Ingram said: "I have known Judith Donovan for several years and hold her in very high regard as a leading DM operator."

He added that York Mailing did not intend to make any further board appointments.

Commenting on the group's growth strategy, which recently saw it acquire Lettershop Group, Ingram said: "We are always looking at any opportunities that we feel could benefit our customers across the group but have no specific targets at this point in time."


Brief Cases shows off future industry talent

2013, november 8 - 13:11

Brief Cases, which is open to primarily second-year degree students studying any creative discipline to do with graphic arts or communication, aims to bring industry and education closer together.

The scheme is an evolution of Brief Encounters, which ran for around 11 years, and is the brainchild of Veronica Heaven, managing director of The Heaven Company.

It was sponsored this year by Virgin, whose consumer insight manager Thom Stebbings sat on the judging panel, together with Heaven and Brian Webb, managing director of design house Webb & Webb and a former president of the Chartered Society of Designers.

Entrants to this year's Brief Cases had to choose one of the following three briefs:

  1. Create three stories in a staff communication piece to explain the Virgin brand, taking into account the core values and its look and feel
  2. Create a high quality, creative calendar to raise the awareness of The Heaven Company, a consultancy in communicating Corporate Responsibility and sustainability issues
  3. Produce a visual identity to capture the spirit of the business-university collaboration that is Brief Cases

The Gold award went to Amedeo Spagnolo, a student at the University of the Creative Arts in Epsom, who wowed the judges with his eye-catching, colourful work.

Commenting on the entry, Webb said: "This is a very clear and immediately understood solution. The strapline gives excellent clarity and it is a logo that works across many applications, online and print, including letters, envelopes, digital formats, apps etc. It's a really well thought through solution."

Two Silvers were awarded this year, one in the Virgin internal communication category to Steven Parry (University of the Creative Arts, Epsom) and Jenna Plumb (Norwich University of the Arts) for the calendar brief.

Heaven told PrintWeek that the students are required as part of the brief to think about the production element of the brief, rather than just contributing an arbitrary design solution.

"We encourage them to think about things like whether its a large or short run project, whether it's going to have personalisation, and about responsible design and sustainable production methods - considering things like paper use and ink coverage," she said.

"An important part of the process is that they are also judged on their rationale - so they have to think through their processes and present a reasoned case for their chosen solution."

Heaven added: "I am delighted that the scheme has attracted Virgin which is a fantastic sponsor for this design initiative and I hope other companies will come on board to support this initiative in future.

"It is a great way to get involved with higher education and helps to increase an individual's employability potential. Brief Cases is a way that companies can demonstrate their Social Responsibility, creating a really effective bridge between business and education and giving something back to the community."





Prince Andrew speaks as guest of honour at Printing Charity event

2013, november 8 - 13:11
The Duke spoke about key passions of his, education and skills, and the importance of SMEs to today's economy. He entreated printers to recognise how crucial taking on apprenticeships could be to the strength of their businesses, and to consider export markets.

He said: "I have concentrated to some extent on skills and apprenticeships and trying to encourage young people to recognise that going to university at 18 isn't necessarily the answer to the question."

He said: "Many businesses look at apprenticeships as a financial risk. How many times have you written ‘three years experience required'? If I could rub that one sentence out we'd be in a much healthier place. You need to put at the bottom: ‘willing to learn.' In many cases that's all you need to say. People will look at that and think this is a business I want to be a part of."

On trading overseas, he said: "I have been looking at what makes the UK prosperous and that is that we are able to export and conduct business a long way from here. Trade in Europe is quite small but outside it's flourishing. I would say think broad, think further than just the UK or Europe."

Welcoming over 181 guests to the event, chairman of The Printing Charity Jon Wright spoke of the organisation's work in 2013 and its future aims. He highlighted a 14% growth in the number of people helped this year, a record number of applicants and winners in this year's Print Futures Awards and the extension of the charity's national reach, with 75% of those helped last year living outside of London and the South East.

Wright said: "Last year was a fantastic year for the charity. But we do know a lot of people out there need our help. This is about asking you to help us find those people. It's important to broadcast that we help people of all ages whether individuals or families."

He added that the charity's aim is to have helped 2,000 people by 2017.

The luncheon also saw previous president Bill Offer added to the list of Presidents Emeritus. On receiving the recognition Offer said: "This is a great charity. I have been so fortunate to be associated with it for 14 years. Yes it was pretty difficult and very hard at times, but a lot of people in the industry supported the charity very well and that's why you're here today."

Exhibition shows off the art of Xerography

2013, november 8 - 12:11

Comprising over 125 works from 40 artists and artist groups, the exhibition encompasses photography, sculpture, video and works on paper and includes early examples of 'copy art' and 'mail art'.

Highlights include Mel Bochner's 'Working Drawings' and 'Other Visible Things on Paper Not Necessarily Meant to be Viewed As Art', as well as works by Barbara T Smith made using a hired Xerox 914.

Xerox UK managing director Darren Cassidy said: "Xerography has always been about pushing the boundaries of innovation and this exhibition is a visual embodiment of that very idea.

"It's astounding to see the inspiration that has been born out of this invention. With 23 new patents awarded every week we're certain that the next 75 years will lead to as many creative developments as the last 75."

The exhibition is open to the public until 10 November.





Laser-cut cover forms typography tribute

2013, november 8 - 09:11

Clormann Design played with letters in various typefaces to create a pattern that could be cut from the page. A paper with unusual strength was needed; the team selected Invercote G 240gsm paperboard from Iggesund for the cover.

Christian Deppisch, a journalist at Novum, said the Invercote was laminated with the foil Brushprint Silver, and a copper shade was printed on to the foil. The designer wanted to play with the contrasts between shiny and matt.

"The delicate pattern is really a challenge and with most other materials the pattern would risk being torn to pieces even before it reached its recipient," he said. "But for this particular job the choice of material was perfect."

Kessler Druck+Medien did the printing and binding; a Heidelberg Speedmaster CD 74-5 LX was used for the cover while the magazine pages were printed on an eight-colour Speedmaster SM 102. Clormann Design worked with cutting and stamping specialists Stigler of Munich for the laser cutting.

A Wohlenberg Champion was used for binding, which proved tricky and could have thrown up potential for the cover to catch on something in the binding machine due to all the holes, said Deppisch.

"It was really, really difficult. So we made the binding machine three times slower and before that we did a lot of testing. We had to change the design of the cover so it would work better on the binding machine, and we closed all gaps in one direction."





Print order volumes highest since 2010, survey shows

2013, november 8 - 08:11

The BPIF's quarterly report, which surveyed 110 businesses, employing 10,835 people across the UK, revealed that 31% of respondents experienced a boost in orders compared to 15% for whom demand declined. Around half said order volumes were stable and three quarters (the highest number in 20 years) reported stable profit margins.

Meanwhile, production for around a third of respondents was on the rise in the last quarter thanks to a boost in new business contracts. Confidence among business owners is also picking up with around 50% predicting a continued rise in new business over the traditionally busier fourth quarter. Only 6% of respondents expect a decline, the report shows.

"It's great news that productive output and confidence is returning to the printing industry. Not just for companies operating within the industry but the wider economy, from which our varied clients come," said BPIF chief executive Kathy Woodward.

Despite the recent negative reports and commentary describing the UK as an unattractive place for manufacturing, respondents to the latest Printing Outlook survey displayed a more confident mood with more than half (54%) expecting further general recovery during the next quarter of the year. This was partly attributed to Christmas business, but also a general uplift in confidence across the industry.

Capacity usage is also on the up across the industry, according to the research, with 71% of respondents working to at least 80% of capacity and 6% working to optimum capacity - also the best figures since 2011.

On the greatest challenges affecting businesses, three quarters of respondents cited competitors' undercutting prices to win business, with insufficient profit to invest and pre-pack administrations the next two greatest concerns of printing industry bosses.

Cost pressures also feature as a challenge with energy hikes taking the top spot followed by ‘other', labour and ink.

Woodward said the BPIF was actively seeking reform in pre-pack legislation and was in talks with government officials on the matter.

She added: "We're also aware of the impact of rising energy costs so we've been collaborating with other trade associations to review the government's Electricity Market Reform Bill and influence energy policy, as well as working with specialists in energy management so that we can get best practice advice and guidance for BPIF members."

Once again, payment terms were a problem with 48% of those surveyed forced to accept longer payment terms from their customers. Borrowing, meanwhile, is getting easier although it has become more expensive, respondents said.

The latest Printing Outlook survey was carried out between 1 and 14 October.


Print order volumes highest since 2011, survey shows

2013, november 8 - 08:11

The BPIF's quarterly report, which surveyed 110 businesses, employing 10,835 people across the UK, revealed that 31% of respondents experienced a boost in orders compared to 15% for whom demand declined. Around half said order volumes were stable and three quarters (the highest number in 20 years) reported stable profit margins.

Meanwhile, production for around a third of respondents was on the rise in the last quarter thanks to a boost in new business contracts. Confidence among business owners is also picking up with around 50% predicting a continued rise in new business over the traditionally busier fourth quarter. Only 6% of respondents expect a decline, the report shows.

"It's great news that productive output and confidence is returning to the printing industry. Not just for companies operating within the industry but the wider economy, from which our varied clients come," said BPIF chief executive Kathy Woodward.

Despite the recent negative reports and commentary describing the UK as an unattractive place for manufacturing, respondents to the latest Printing Outlook survey displayed a more confident mood with more than half (54%) expecting further general recovery during the next quarter of the year. This was partly attributed to Christmas business, but also a general uplift in confidence across the industry.

Capacity usage is also on the up across the industry, according to the research, with 71% of respondents working to at least 80% of capacity and 6% working to optimum capacity - also the best figures since 2011.

On the greatest challenges affecting businesses, three quarters of respondents cited competitors' undercutting prices to win business, with insufficient profit to invest and pre-pack administrations the next two greatest concerns of printing industry bosses.

Cost pressures also feature as a challenge with energy hikes taking the top spot followed by ‘other', labour and ink.

Woodward said the BPIF was actively seeking reform in pre-pack legislation and was in talks with government officials on the matter.

She added: "We're also aware of the impact of rising energy costs so we've been collaborating with other trade associations to review the government's Electricity Market Reform Bill and influence energy policy, as well as working with specialists in energy management so that we can get best practice advice and guidance for BPIF members."

Once again, payment terms were a problem with 48% of those surveyed forced to accept longer payment terms from their customers. Borrowing, meanwhile, is getting easier although it has become more expensive, respondents said.

The latest Printing Outlook survey was carried out between 1 and 14 October.


Hippoprint installs UK's first Mimaki JV400-160SUV

2013, november 8 - 07:11

The web-to-print business is looking to expand its existing plant list, which includes HP machines and a raft of Konica Minolta printers as well as Morgana finishing equipment, with new kit from Mimaki.

As a result, Hippoprint owner Anthony Wood got an early look at Mimaki's new JV400-160SUV on a visit to Mimaki distributor Hybrid Services' showroom with reseller Granthams.

The 1.6m-wide printer, which was unveiled at Fespa in May, had just arrived at the showroom and Wood ordered one on the spot. It was installed at the Wakefield, which produces which everything from leaflets and forms to stickers, pull-up banners and t-shirts, site two weeks ago.

"Hybrid did a fantastic job at the install and so far the results are excellent - better than I expected even. I thought we would have some bedding-in issues, but it has been absolutely fine," said Wood.

"We considered a latex printer but this is more in keeping with the results of our other machines. It gives great scratch resistance but it also has a very nice sheen to it, it's so vibrant. Also the instant drying and UV curing is vital for what we do," he added.

"Being the first company in the UK to install a JV400-160SUV means we stay at the forefront of the rapid-turnaround sector. We need the capability to instantly finish prints and get them to our customers the next day. It's our USP and we can't afford to let that slip."

The new machine replaces an exiting HP5000, which Wood said would remain on site as back-up.

The JV400-SUV is a water-based solvent printer that is said to combine the flexibility of a solvent printer with the durability of UV-cured inks.

"We frequently supply high-colour posters and pull-up banners with large ink loads but it can be a real challenge to finish them the same day as they're printed," said Wood. "The SUV means we can print and send within a matter of minutes and with 95% of our orders coming late in the day, it takes a little bit of the pressure off."

He added that the business planned to invest around £175,000 over the next year in more Mimaki equipment and a raft of new finishing machines to cope with the additional output.

Hippoprint was formed by Wood in 2009 and now employs more than 20 staff, with additional recruitment planned for the new year.




Spandex Asia-Pacific acquires two wide-format suppliers

2013, november 8 - 06:11

Sydney-based Plas Image and Perth-based Qualsign, both of which will continue to trade under their own names for the next 12-18 months, became Spandex group companies at the beginning of this month.

Plas Image, which was founded in 2000 by Stan Vidaic, is a distributor of rigid materials and digital roll media.

Qualsign, established by Merv Hopkins in 1995, is a distributor of aluminium composite sheets, cut vinyl and digital media and had an existing relationship with Spandex as a reseller of Arlon and Avery signage materials.

Alex McClelland, managing director and vice president of Spandex Asia-Pacific, said: "In today's business environment, we cannot stand still; the status quo is not an option. Real quality opportunities for acquisition do not come along that often and we were fortunate to find two this year that offered expansion into new product areas and adjacent markets.

"The addition of highly experienced industry people is another positive as we begin the task of integration. While there are some inevitable parallels in our customer bases, for the main part, Plas Image and Qualsign bring new products that Spandex did not previously offer. We are delighted with these acquisitions and welcome staff and customers alike into the Spandex family."

McClelland added that Spandex would continue to look for suitable acquisitions to "further enhance our position in the market".





Print sales fall as Grafenia transitions

2013, november 7 - 14:11

In its interim results, the renamed parent company of Printing.com posted a 3.4% drop in sales to £10.08m in the six months to 30 September, and an 11.4% fall in pre-tax profits to £305,000. However, EBITDA increased by 8.4% to £1.29m.

Print sales overall were down £500,000 at £9.4m, and sales at its Printing.com franchise network slumped by £1.2m, or 21%, to £4.4m.

Sales of its W3P online ordering and web-to-print system increased by almost 24% to £566,000, while Template Cloud sales grew to £77,000 (2012: £24,000).

Chief executive Tony Rafferty said: "The business is in a transition. It's probably taking longer than we thought, but we are seeing momentum.

"Our SaaS developments are eating up all the profit at the moment, but the reality is you can't start something new without investing in it, and that's what we're doing. I'm one of the largest shareholders in Grafenia and I'm very excited about it," he added.

The group signed up 19 new agreements for its W3P online ordering and web-to-print solution during the period, and Rafferty said adoption was increasing.

"We granted the highest number of W3P deals in October, after the period end," he said. "Many SME litho and digital printers have been around the houses and looked at all the web-to-print offerings, and they have found that W3P is easier to use."

The new W3P web shop facility came out of beta testing last month.

"It's early days and it's just starting to gain momentum," Rafferty added. "My agenda is to have 1,000 printers who get rid of their website that loses them money and replace it with a web shop that makes money."

He said the business remained cash-generative, and the reduction in net cash, from £1.14m to £530,000, was the result of a strategic move: "We are simply paying suppliers quicker than a year ago in order to take advantage of settlement discounts."

The firm cut its interim dividend to 0.33p (2012: 1.05p). Grafenia's share price fell from 21.5p to 19.25p on the news.

Rafferty will shortly publish a book 'Web-to-Print MD-to-MD', that will challenge conventions about the business-to-business and business-to-consumer markets.


Print industry less likely to take on apprentices

2013, november 7 - 14:11
Nearly half (46%) of respondents from the print industry cited lack of time to devote to trainees as a barrier, while 20% claimed costs were prohibitive and 5% said suitable candidates were lacking.

"There are understandable reasons why many in the print industry are hesitant to invest their time and money into training an apprentice, as the benefits of apprenticeship schemes are not widely documented.

"However, there is some evidence to suggest that they are worth the investment," said Basil Bannayi, print division managing director at Close Brothers Asset Finance, which carried out the quarterly survey.

Bannayi said that apprenticeships could help businesses by reducing the time and expense of recruiting, boosting productivity and developing a more diverse talent base.

The latest Close Brothers Business Barometer, which surveys small- and medium-sized businesses across the UK, attracted 772 respondents of which 75 were from the print industry.

Of those, around a third had turnovers between £250,000 and £750,000, a third were in the £750,000 to £1m bracket, 15% turned over £1m-£5m and a quarter turned over in excess of £5m.

More than half (54%) said that recruiting skilled staff had proved challenging in the past, however of those that were actively running apprenticeships, only 13% said they planned to offer their trainees a permanent position on course completion.

"Apprenticeships can go some way to addressing this problem by establishing a better fit between the skills possessed by the apprentice and those required by the company," Bannayi said.

He added that the standard of work produced by apprentices was often higher in order to meet assessment targets and that staff retention rates usually showed improvement because trainees felt a loyalty to the company.



EFI claims IP 'victory' over Durst after German court invalidates patent

2013, november 7 - 12:11

The latest development in EFI and Durst's patent feud, which dates back to 2007, follows a ruling in Durst's favour earlier this year by the Düsseldorf District Court in relation to Durst's German patent no. 10 2005 006 092.

Durst chief executive Richard Piock told PrintWeek at the time that this ruling gave Durst the right to stop the sale of Vutek printers with white ink in Germany and claim a royalty from customers that purchased Vutek printers with white ink in the past four years.

However, EFI filed a nullify action in the Federal Patent Court of Germany asking the court to invalidate the portions of the patent asserted against EFI on the grounds that what Durst claimed had actually been disclosed years before.

EFI succeeded in an earlier legal dispute with Durst covering a "utility model" - a less rigorous form of intellectual property protection - for similar reasons after German courts in Mannheim and Karlsruhe held the "invention" to be invalid.

On 23 October the Federal Patent Court agreed with EFI and invalidated substantial parts of Durst's patent. Durst, which was unavailable for comment at the time of writing, has the right to appeal.





Dscoop premieres university initiative at EMEA event with live streaming

2013, november 7 - 12:11

"This is one of our most exciting initiatives," said Dscoop global chairman Chris Petro.

The university is headed up by former Dscoop member John Tenwinkel as director. Tenwinkel began his career as an Indigo 3050 operator, working his way up to head up production at a number of US print businesses and holds undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in graphic communications management.

Over the course of Dscoop EMEA2 this week Tenwinkel will be canvassing members on what sort of resources they would like the university to prioritise.

Initially the university will focus on pulling together an online repository of information from a variety of sources - not just Dscoop - such as webinars, research analysis and white papers, grouped by disciplines such as management, production and sales.

However, Tenwinkel hinted that in the future the university had grander ambitions and could ultimately offer qualifications and structured training delivered via webinars, face-to-face events, online resources and exams that could result in formal qualifications.

Tenwinkel is in very early discussions with a number of educational institutions on their involvement with the university. He stressed that it was very early days and the focus at this stage was simply delivering valuable content to members globally.

"We're looking at qualifications, but we have to understand where the demand is first. When we talk about certifications we have to look at the whole industry and identify where there are overarching gaps. But at this stage it's too early to talk about formal qualifications, this is just the start of the university's incredibly exciting journey," said Tenwinkel.

The university is currently pulling together an advisory board to help identify the content needed and also advise on potential content partners from within print and also outside, as well as being ambassadors for the university.

The university, which is sponsored by HP, plans to launch its online delivery platform around March 2014, in time for Dscoop9 in Orlando, Florida.

As part of the soft launch at Dscoop EMEA2, the university will live stream seven sessions today and tomorrow (7 and 8 November), accessible to Dscoop members and colleagues within their organisations. The service will also include exclusive interviews with speakers and delegates and the streamed sessions will be archived post-event.

The sessions featured will include keynotes from high-profile speaker Barrie Bramley on leaving the past behind and focussing on the future and Karim Rashid, a leading industrial designer, on how the future of design is digital.

Other streamed conference content will include sessions on customer relationship management, taking personalisation to the next level, transitioning from offset to digital to cross media, building your business in the new economy, imaging trends and financial performance.

"Nothing can replace actually coming to the conference, but this will give our EMEA members the opportunity to engage with the conference and the great education on offer here. It will also benefit members from outside the EMEA," said Tenwinkel.




Trinity Mirror plans Reading print plant closure

2013, november 6 - 07:11

According to reports, some 28 staff are at risk of redundancy as a result of the planned closure, which will see the printing of titles including the Reading Post transferred to Trinity Mirror's Watford site.

A Trinity Mirror spokesman said: "Trinity Mirror Printing Reading has announced that it will not be renewing the lease on its Tessa Road site in Reading when it expires in early 2014.

"We have entered into a period of consultation with all affected staff."

It is understood that alternative roles will be available at Watford for some of the affected print staff.

Excluding Reading, Trinity Mirror has nine other print sites around the UK, which are used to print its own titles and for contract printing.





Communisis confirms HP T-series order as LBG contract commences

2013, november 6 - 04:11

An HP T300 will be installed next at Copley, in December, followed by the second T400 in March 2014, at which point the site will replicate the HP T-series setup at Communisis' main transactional print site in Speke, Liverpool.

Communisis announced the triple installation in an Interim Management Statement published this morning (6 November), in which it said trading was in-line with expectations and listed the Lloyds contract win, Editions Financial acquisition and £60m debt refinance amongst its third-quarter highlights.

Communisis hailed the high-speed digital investment, which it said would "enhance the group's competitive advantage as the largest transactional operator in Europe" of HP's T-series platform.

The company said that the Lloyds outsourcing contract had been ratified by the LBG board and was "operating as intended" after successfully going live on 1 October. The Lloyds deal represents Communisis' second major win of the year after a nine-year contract was signed with Nationwide in January.

Communisis' legacy cheque printing business was said to be suffering from the "continued erosion of volume", leading the company to state that managing this trend and the opportunities arising from growth in outsourcing were its key priorities.

"Continuing to win substantial, multi-year contracts and generating additional revenues from expanded service offerings [is an] essential part of our long-term growth strategy," the company added.

Communisis' £60m debt refinance includes an increased £55m revolving credit facility, committed until March 2018, and a £5m overdraft, renewable annually; the firm's banking syndicate includes RBS, Lloyds TSB, HSBC and Barclays.

Communisis chief executive Andy Blundell said the company was continuing to "deliver successfully on its strategy for profitable growth".

Communisis share price was unchanged at 63p.





Problems with the PrintWeek website today

2013, november 5 - 14:11

In anticipation of our new website going live in the next few weeks, printweek.com was migrated to new servers early this morning. Unfortunately this caused a number of stability issues on the current site that resulted in the website being out of action for much of today.

While we attempted to fix the problem we switched the website back to the old servers, unfortunately these also developed a fault during the migration and this caused some users to be redirected to the website of our sister title HR Magazine. The good news is that the stability problems have now been resolved, which will free us up to look for someone to pin the blame on.

Apologies from the PrintWeek team for any inconvenience caused.

Problems with the PrintWeek website this morning

2013, november 5 - 14:11

In anticipation of our new website going live in the next few weeks, printweek.com was migrated to new servers early this morning. Unfortunately this caused a number of stability issues on the current site that resulted in the website being out of action for much of today.

While we attempted to fix the problem we switched the website back to the old servers, unfortunately these also developed a fault during the migration and this caused some users to be redirected to the website of our sister title HR Magazine. The good news is that the stability problems have now been resolved, which will free us up to look for someone to pin the blame on.

Apologies from the PrintWeek team for any inconvenience caused.