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Banbury Litho accelerates the pace of change

Banbury Litho accelerates the pace of change
Banbury Litho is in transformation mode, a process that began 18 months ago when the company invested in a Mimaki JFX200-2513EX flatbed UV printer and an Esko Kongsberg X24 Edge digital cutter with i-Cut software from CMYUK, so that it could start to realise its vision for the future.

Matt Plant, Banbury Litho’s Commercial Director, explained: “Essentially, we are aiming to combine the look and feel of a creative branding agency with a state-of-the-art production facility. To that end, we are developing the front-end of the business, but obviously, we also need to invest in our production capabilities too.”

First established 42 years ago, the Oxford-based company is on a journey towards growth and diversity that has served to completely revise its culture.

Matt continued: “Internally, we’ve created really meaningful values for the business that we all work to every day. We’re evolving into a customer-centric organisation that has a true understanding of our clients’ businesses and uses its knowledge and expertise to attain the right results.”

Accordingly, Banbury Litho has introduced a new in-house creative design facility to complement its technical innovation and solutions team, together with a rebrand. This approach saw the company grow by 14 percent prior to Coronavirus.

In common with many digital print businesses, Banbury Litho has successfully navigated the challenges of Lockdown, largely due to the fact that it created a new website, www.coronavirusprint.co.uk offering a number of COVID-related products, including signs and displays, posters, floor graphics, face masks, visors, gloves and sanitisers to its wide variety of customers.

This in turn led to a high demand for floor graphics and other types of safety signage, which was what persuaded it to purchase the Mimaki flatbed and Esko cutter.

Banbury offers a wide range of print solutions, and has a plant list that already included two B2 Litho presses, one of which is a Heidelberg Speedmaster XL75 LED, plus Xerox iGen and Iridesse presses.

On the wide-format side, it uses a Mutoh ValueJet printer, Mutoh Valuecut cutter and Vivid laminators, all of which enabled it to produce some wide-format print in-house, but it also needed to outsource work that involved the production of substantial quantities or higher quality printing.

 “Everything we do has to offer added value in some way”, observed Matt, adding that this was one of the reasons why the company chose the Mimaki JFX200-2513EX. He said: “We were particularly impressed with its speed, white and clear ink facility and high-quality output.”

Working in tandem with the Mimaki flatbed is the Esko Kongsberg X24 Edge, which provides Banbury Litho with the level of versatility it needs if it is to fully achieve the diversification it desires.

Matt opined: “The Esko Kongsberg is one of the best cutting tables on the market. If you’ve got the right specification and the right tools, you can produce wonderful work on it, such as packaging concepts, short-run packaging, point of sale material, Reboard furniture and more.

“We are definitely looking to diversify and with our consultative approach, in-house design capabilities, value-added services and the new equipment, we are ready for the new markets that have opened up to us.

Banbury Litho’s relationship with CMYUK is new, but it is also one that it has high hopes for, not least because the CMYUK ethos reflects its own.

Matt confided: “What I like about CMYUK is its service level – nothing is too much trouble. If you need extra training, extra support, or a query answering, or if you want to visit its showroom and test something, it is very accommodating. We’re actually partners and I place an enormous amount of value on partnerships. I want CMYUK to be by our side to help and advise when necessary and I feel confident that it will be there whenever it is needed.”

With a recruitment drive planned for the new year, and its newly refurbished premises now offering dedicated client consultation areas, Banbury Litho is more than ready to start welcoming both its existing and new clients face-to-face.

It has already initiated talks with CMYUK regarding a further investment in roll-to-roll equipment, thus opening up the possibility of producing soft signage and various interior décor applications. The company has also just produced a new resource for all its clients with the publication of a 160-page book that demystifies the many printing processes, thus helping them to better understand their own requirements.

Banbury’s Coronavirus website is still currently up and running but will eventually close and be transformed into something new and with the company’s drive, ambition and vision underpinned by an impressive arsenal of printing equipment, it will be very interesting to see precisely what this will be!

 For further information on Banbury Litho, visit: www.banburylitho.co.uk

 For further information on CMYUK, visit: www.cmyuk.com

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