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HP Indigo Takes the Lead in Quality Digital Printing

Posted By Sharon Kanon On March 25, 2008 @ 11:28 am In | No Comments

Journalists, analysts, and customers from all over the world received demonstrations of HP’s newest products at the Israeli event.There should be no surprise that international printing giant Hewlett Packard (HP) kicked off its debut of new printing products at a pre-Drupa event in Israel.

Since HP bought Israeli company Indigo in 2001 for $650 million, HP Indigo has leapt into the top spot as one of the world’s leaders in digital printing.

Now, the company is launching a range of new technologies, many developed in Israel, that HP promises will change the value, volume and environmental footprint of today’s digital printing industry.

Among the new products that were launched at the event in Israel this month was the HP Indigo 7000, a cost effective printer for run lengths ranging from one to over 1,000, which begins shipping in June. The press runs at speeds of 120 four-color pages per minute, and uses 25% less electricity consumption per page.

Other products include the W7200 – a new digital web press; as well as an enhanced version of the 5500 with new market-driven features including a new feeder and inline UV coating options.

HP’s purchase of Indigo marked the multinational’s first move into the digital print industry. Founded by visionary Benny Landa, in 1993, Indigo launched the world’s first Digital Offset Color Press, which combined offset printing with digital imaging technology.

In 2000, Landa – who has over 500 patents to his name worldwide, and over 150 in the US, was the recipient of the Gold Medal awarded by the Institute of Printing in 2000, for “one of the most significant technology innovations since the development of the offset printing press more than 100 years ago.” He was also awarded the “Power of Communications” award by the AGC in 2005.

In the wake of the Indigo purchase, HP went on to buy two other Israeli companies in the graphic arts industry – Scitex Vision, a leader in graphics, and NUR Macroprinters, which specialized in wide formatting. It later purchased Mercury Software, a leading Israeli business software company. Today HP employs 1,700 people in Israel at its plants in Ness Ziona, Kiryat Gat, Haifa, and Caesarea.

Together, this $1 billion spending spree has allowed HP to offer unique, end-to-end software business solutions generally, and specifically for the graphic arts industry, enabling it to become a leading company in the field. All of the digital presses run with sophisticated software that creates an efficient workflow through the entire printing and finishing process.

If the pre-Drupa event held this month in Israel, is a glimmer of the main Drupa exhibition, which takes place every four years and is the world’s largest print and graphic arts trade show, HP Indigo will be the undisputed star.

Journalists, analysts, and customers from all over the world were treated to the latest preview of products during prep meetings in Tel Aviv, the R&D center in Rehovot, and the company’s manufacturing site in Kiryat Gat. The Product Fair was a dazzling display of the latest state of the art in printing and graphics.

“HP Indigo has done well in the last four years,” said Alon Bar-Shany, VP and manager of the HP Indigo Digital Press business. “Our customers have had even better growth. It is incredible.”

Last year HP Indigo’s customers printed seven billion pages; this year 10 billion pages. Bar-Shany predicts a 10- fold increase in printing production from HP Indigo presses between this year and 2016. The big number: 100 billion pages.

Indigo Day was a significant part of HP’s Israel event. All the digital presses demonstrated were designed and manufactured in Israel. With a 70% market share of the digital label market, HP Indigo’s digital presses have proven that they can provide trendy, customized labels for elegant Pinot Noir wine, or precise color-coding or barcodes needed for pharmaceuticals.

The preview pre-Drupa event not only displayed the vast possibilities of digital printing in the 21century, it also showed the happy synergy when the innovative energies of HP and Indigo are combined.

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