Eastman Kodak Company

KODAK NEXPRESS SX Platform Provides Differentiating Digital Print Capabilities and Drives Growth for Gateway Visual Communications

Gateway Visual Communications is growing its digital print business and expanding its customer base utilizing the KODAK NEXPRESS SX Platform. The Mississauga, Ontario, print provider installed a KODAK NEXPRESS SX2700 Digital Production Color Press with a 36-inch (914 mm) long sheet option earlier this year to help differentiate its service offerings. Gateway is the first print facility in Canada to utilize 36-inch long sheets, which provides a significant competitive advantage in the marketplace.

“At Gateway, we try to offer a variety of graphic art services to our clients, and adding the NEXPRESS SX Press to our portfolio just gives our shop even more flexibility to meet our customers’ needs,” said Brian McConnell, VP of Operations at Gateway Visual Communications. “We’re utilizing the long sheet to produce larger-sized applications and the Fifth Imaging Unit Solution for Dimensional and Gold Ink to create more eye-catching marketing materials. The response from customers has been overwhelmingly positive since we started using the platform.”

The NEXPRESS SX Platform is well known for helping printers drive more jobs per shift and more profit per page. Gateway is utilizing the KODAK NEXPRESS SX Platform for its commercial, direct mail, and variable-data printing applications. The 36-inch long sheet delivers 40 percent more printable area to help Gateway accommodate a wider variety of applications, including larger sized brochures and point of purchase displays. Since the installation of the NEXPRESS SX Press, McConnell has already noticed a significant increase in three- and four-panel brochures.

Gateway uses the NEXPRESS Platform Print Genius quality control tools to manage and maintain peak quality throughout each production run. The KODAK NEXPRESS Intelligent Calibration System helps to ensure consistent and accurate color reproduction.

“With the NEXPRESS Press, we can continuously adjust and refine the platform’s output, which is a nice advantage over the other systems we looked at,” said McConnell. “The NEXPRESS Press performs even better than expected. It transitions seamlessly between jobs and there’s minimal downtime. We know the imaging will be both consistent and high quality, no matter what we’re working on.”

McConnell finds that the Fifth Imaging Unit Solution for Dimensional Ink is a strong selling point. The Dimensional Ink allows Gateway to produce tactile printing effects with a great degree of control for high-impact graphics, text, or full-color images. This value-added service is already attracting interest from Gateway’s existing clients and generating new business opportunities within the marketplace. Gateway used the Dimensional Printing Solution on the cover of the October issue of Graphic Monthly Canada, a magazine published for the Canadian printing industry.

To expand printing capabilities further, Gateway also recently added KODAK NEXPRESS Gold Dry Ink, one of the newest options for the NEXPRESS Fifth Imaging Unit Solution. The pigments in Gold Dry Ink produce an eye-catching sparkle effect to give printed pieces a metallic look. Gateway applies the attention-grabbing gold effects to its customers’ printed pieces to help differentiate their applications and achieve greater visual impact.

The enhanced digital print capabilities have also helped Gateway increase organic growth with existing clients. Many of its offset clients are either moving their short-run variable-data print applications over to the NEXPRESS Platform or adding additional digital jobs to help supplement their offset applications. For instance, when customers require applications printed in both English and French, Gateway typically produces a high volume of English brochures on their offset presses and a small volume of French brochures on the NEXPRESS SX Platform.

McConnell finds that these types of short-run jobs are produced more cost effectively on the NEXPRESS SX Platform and can easily be completed with tight turnarounds, which helps with last-minute requests.

“The NEXPRESS SX Platform is a real game-changer for Gateway Visual Communications,” said Jerry Miller, Kodak’s Regional Business Manager of US&C Digital Printing Solutions. “The NEXPRESS SX Platform is a robust and versatile digital print solution that offers significant gains in image quality and performance. Having the NEXPRESS SX Platform, along with Dimensional and Gold Ink, will no doubt help Gateway deliver more value to its customers and help generate new revenue opportunities.”

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