Horizon International and Standard Finishing Systems: A Postpress Partnership

Standard Finishing Systems (Booth 617) has been an exclusive sales partner to Horizon International for more than 35 years, marking a strong and long standing relationship between two family-owned companies. Horizon continues to develop innovative and intelligent new postpress solutions, while Standard helps customers throughout North America deploy those systems for increased bindery efficiency.

Horizon operates a world-class facility in Biwako, Japan, producing vertically integrated products for all major paper finishing operations, including folding, perfect binding, trimming, collating, stitching, and cutting.

Founded more than 60 years ago in the tradition-rich city of Kyoto, Horizon currently employs more than 550 people in its ISO 9001 and 14001-certified factory (shown below), all dedicated to the design and manufacture of top quality finishing products.

Horizon is committed to bringing productivity and performance to every area of the bindery through its core philosophy of “Intelligent Automation.” Products feature quick makeready, easy operation, and fast turnaround times, all designed to maximize productivity, increase short-run flexibility, and lower labor and production costs for the end user.

“Intelligence is a key survival factor for just about everything,” says Eijiro Hori, President of Horizon International. “Our company aggressively pursues ‘smart’ postpress automation to satisfy the evolving demands of printers.”

Horizon is continuously breaking new ground with innovations in automation such as icon-based color touch-screen controls available across its entire fleet of products, and a wireless remote for its AFC folder that allows the operator to control the fold quality while off-loading finished product. These and other advancements ensure Standard products keep pace with industry trends, including on-demand printing and short-run jobs—two of the biggest challenges facing today’s printers.

Intelligent automation is not just an underlying principle for product development at Horizon; it also drives the manufacturing process at Horizon’s 1.55 million-sq.ft. factory. The operation supports flexible lines for machining large parts, multiple-function lathes, gear shaping and die molding, sheet metal stamping and forming, metal plating, chip mounting, a robotized warehouse, plastic injection molding, plus state-of-the-art climate and EMC (electromagnetic compatibility) testing chambers. Horizon offers a unique postpress perspective, manufacturing products in each category from start to finish under one roof. It also prides itself on producing as many parts as possible in house.

In keeping with this philosophy, Horizon manufactures over 70% of the components in its equipment, which allows the company nearly total command over quality control in its drive toward zero defects. With core competence in quality, manufacturing, advanced finishing automation, and digital control, Horizon is well-positioned to address the diverse needs of an ever-changing print industry.

“We place enormous value on our partnership with Horizon,” says Standard Executive Vice President David Reny. “First-class suppliers like Horizon and Hunkeler are essential to our mandate to provide innovative feeding and finishing solutions for print service providers today and into the future.”