The AccurioPress C14000 will be launched at the Printing United exhibition in Dallas this week. It will offer a 40% increase in throughput over the AccurioPress C10000, taking Konica Minolta into high end production printing for the first time.
While KM accepts it has been behind rivals in production printing, it believes it has a significant technology edge over the competition. This is the IQ501, an innovative quality scanner that measures and adjusts back to back registration and more importantly, controls colour quality and consistency by making micro adjustments to each sheet if needed.
“The IQ501 gives us a significant advantage,” says Koji Sugie, division president for the professional print division, in KM’s 2018 annual report. “The IQ501, jointly developed with our measuring instruments business unit and its colorimeter technologies for printed materials, is something only we can provide.
“The product has been exceptionally well received by our customers and is used in over 80% of the new colour medium speed PP units currently being sold. Per unit productivity rises with the use of the IQ501. For example, print volume that previously required three printers can now be handled with only two, further boosting customer value.”
He promised that the company would be introducing the higher speed machine during the financial year that started in April. That is going to be announced next week with deliveries having to be underway by Q1 next year to meet this claim.
In the meantime development on the IQ501 continues. It can already record settings used and adjustments made during a print run so that an audit file can be provided to customers along with their job. This is linked to the inspection function added in February this year, says Sugie. “We plan to release more functions going forward. In the future, we will begin looking at the management of multiple printers and the consolidated management of workflows through cooperation with other sites, as we continue to provide solutions that solve our customers' problems.”
Konica Minolta is anticipating growth in personalised direct mail and in orders placed through websites, leading to continued growth in demand for top end digital presses. Its professional print business grew revenues by 49% in the 2018 financial year over 2017.
By Gareth Ward