EFI and Heidelberg Canada announced a new agreement under which Heidelberg will distribute the VUTEk GS series of large-format printers throughout Canada. 

Under the agreement, Heidelberg Canada will distribute EFI’s VUTEk GS2000, GS3200 and GS5000r printers, as well as the inks (under the Saphira brand name), parts, consumables, accessories and upgrades related to these printers. Heidelberg will also provide customer and technical support for the VUTEk GS series of printers, including installation and training.

Employing 160 people across the country, Mississauga-based Heidelberg Canada maintains 25 equipment and consumables sales representatives in Canada, as well as three regional sales vice presidents. In addition to servicing and consumables, Heidelberg will support its new VUTEk distribution with the Prinect Color Toolbox, which – recently awarded IDEAlliance G7 System Certification – is a suite of colour-management tools for device calibration, ICC profile generation, and proof/print analysis.

“Wide and super-wide format printing are of considerable interest to the Canadian print market, and Heidelberg has the right workflow, colour management, service and consumables expertise needed to integrate these technologies into a print production environment,” said Ken Freek, VP of Product Management, Heidelberg Canada. “Both EFI and Heidelberg are leaders in their respective markets. Together we can bring a best-in-class portfolio to our customers.”
The VUTEk GS series of high-end printers can be integrated into a complete Prinect workflow and can be color managed by Heidelberg’s Prinect Color Toolbox, which was recently awarded the IDEAlliance G7 System Certification. Customers will benefit from a single workflow that drives a digital device and an offset press, resulting in superior color matching output from both devices.
Earlier this year, EFI reached a similar distribution agreement with Heidelberg USA to sell the VUTEk GS series across the United States. “Few companies are better respected in the industry than Heidelberg. Adding Heidelberg Canada as a reseller for EFI fits with our mission to offer customers the best combination of products to achieve diversity and profitability,” said Frank Mallozzi, Senior VP of Worldwide Sales and Marketing, EFI.

Montreal-based Nustream Graphic Inc. becomes a distributor of GMG Americas’ colour management products throughout Canada. The reseller agreement involves the full line of GMG products, including applications like ColorProof, DotProof, FlexoProof and ProofControl.

“We represent exceptional companies such as Screen in CTP, Xeikon and Agfa. With all this experience in CTP, toner and inkjet digital printing, and traditional offset, we wanted to close the loop with the best solution for colour management and make sure our customers were able to offer the most consistent colour, no matter the device,” said Steve Daigle, Sales & Marketing Director.

Nustream Graphic is a national dealer with representation in Montreal, Vancouver and Toronto, as well as an office in Europe.

Domtar Distribution Group announced today that its North American entities will be renamed Ariva. In Canada, specifically, Ariva becomes the new name for Domtar’s Buntin Reid, JBR La Maison du Papier, and The Paper House operations.

The Ariva name will also be applied to Domtar’s distribution efforts in the U.S., Mexico, the Caribbean, and Latin America.

“Our customers’ businesses and needs are changing in ways no one could imagine a decade ago,” said Mark Ushpol, Senior VP of Ariva. Ushpol added that Ariva has been established to create new partnerships around the globe. "Our new identity reflects our recognition of these fundamental changes and our commitment to work as a unified team to deliver new products and solutions to give our customers a competitive edge.”

Ariva will carry the new tag line Paper to pixels.

Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG reached a global agreement to distribute the toner-based Ricoh Pro C901 press. The agreement is scheduled to start in April 2011, with Ricoh providing service and support.

“By rounding off our offset portfolio, including Anicolor technology, with new digital printing equipment, we are providing our clients the combination of best-in-class offset, and now also digital printing technology,” said Bernhard Schreier, CEO of Heidelberg. “With this new partnership, we will also address customer demands in the broad spectrum of hybrid print applications, [in other words] the combination of offset and digital printing within a single print product.”

The distribution agreement is to begin in the United Kingdom and Germany, while both companies expect to be working together on a global basis by the May 2012 drupa trade show in Dusseldorf. Heidelberg and Ricoh are also planning to expand the agreement to include more Ricoh production machines in the future.

“In today's climate it is important that commercial printers have the right tools to be versatile, and meet both long and short run requests,” said Shiro Kondo, President and CEO, Ricoh Company. “Heidelberg is the gold standard in commercial and packaging printing. This partnership demonstrates its confidence in our digital technology and the ability of Ricoh to meet the needs of the graphic arts industry.”

The Ricoh Pro C901 press, running on Ricoh’s PxPTM chemical toner, has a speed range of 60 to 90 pages per minute. The move marks Heidelberg’s second major distribution agreement made in 2011, as the press maker begins to sell EFI’s VUTEk GS series of wide-format printers in the United States.

PaperlinX Canada and Océ Canada has announced a partnership which will see PaperlinX become a full service dealer of Océ Digital Graphics Systems products, effective immediately. PaperlinX Canada will market and sell Océ Digital Graphics products through Coast Paper and Spicers.

“PaperlinX Canada has built a strong foundation of business diversification as a key component to our strategic plan,” says Gord Saray, Director of Business Development for Eastern Canada. “The Sign & Display Graphics segment is a critical pillar in this foundation. Our team remains focused on providing value to our customers through viable equipment, media and consumable solutions. PaperlinX Canada also strives to attract suppliers who are industry innovators and leaders. We are proud to represent Océ Canada; a company which will be a valuable resource supporting our customers and employees across Canada.”

Servicing of the Océ equipment will be undertaken by PaperlinX's Technical Services Group (TSG).

EFI and Heidelberg USA today announced a new agreement under which Heidelberg will distribute the VUTEk GS series of wide-format printers to the commercial print market across the United States. Heidelberg Canada is not involved in the agreement.
"We're excited to enter into this distribution agreement with Heidelberg USA. It allows us to bring Heidelberg customers our award-winning, super-wide-format, digital printers," said Frank Mallozzi, Senior VP of Worldwide Sales and Marketing, EFI. 

Heidelberg USA will have a VUTEk GS3200 in its North American Print & Packaging Technology Center (NAPPTC) for demonstrations. The machine will be integrated into a Prinect workflow and will be colour managed by Heidelberg’s Prinect Color Toolbox. VUTEk wide-format printers range in width from 2- to 5-metres in roll-to-roll and flatbed formats.
“Wide and super-wide-format printing are high-growth opportunities and Heidelberg has the right workflow, colour management, service and Saphira consumables expertise needed to integrate these technologies into a print production environment,” said James Martin, Senior VP, marketing, Heidelberg USA. “EFI is a leader in the superwide space and together with Heidelberg we can bring a best-in-class portfolio to our customers.”

Two of the industry's largest technology suppliers announced a joint decision yesterday as Agfa Graphics and xpedx plan to end their long-standing distribution relationship on December 2, 2010. The move comes a few months after Agfa finalized its purchase of Pitman company, which is a large U.S. technology distributor, with some 500 employees and 16 locations.

"The graphic communications industry is in transition, and we acknowledge that new strategic partnerships are the result of the evolving needs of the marketplace,” stated Peter Wilkens, President of Agfa Graphics. “Thanks to our long-standing business relationship, Agfa and xpedx have agreed to a transition plan that will not cause any concern for our joint customers."

"Our customers are our highest priority and whether they decide to explore new technologies, or go elsewhere for Agfa products, xpedx will support their needs," said Dennis Killion, Director of Marketing-Graphics, xpedx.

Earlier, within days of Agfa’s acquisition of Pitman, Kodak also announced it would end its distributorship agreements with Pitman, which took effect in October 2010.

Videojet Technologies, after purchasing F. Armida y Cía’s coding business, has begun direct operations in Mexico under the business name Videojet Technologies México. Videojet develops and manufacturer's inkjet-based coding and marking systems used primarily in packaging applications.

“We thank F. Armida y Cía’s for their efforts and achievements. They represented Videojet for over 20 years in the Mexican market," stated Eduardo de la Torre, GM of Videojet Technologies México. “This is the time for Videojet to have direct presence in Mexico, with the aim of investing and expanding its geographic coverage.”

Videojet claims to have installed more than 275,000 systems in over 135 countries. Videojet Latin America is run by President Sergio Brown.

manroland signed an agreement to distribute products of Illinois-based Tensor Group, which specializes in the manufacture of single-width newspaper presses. Tensor, owned and led by CEO Martin Hozjan, claims to have installed 2,500 units (approximately 180 press lines) in 42 countries since its inception in 1993.

According to a statement describing the distribution agreement, the markets targeted by manroland are in Central and South America, the NAFTA countries Canada and Mexico, as well as Southeast Asia, and Southern Africa. manroland is to distribute the Tensor equipment under the existing names T-400BE, T-460, T-500 and T-1400.

"By supplementing our sales portfolio with Tensor products, we are now able to offer our customers competitively priced single-width newspaper presses," stated Gerd Finkbeiner, CEO of manroland.

"On the one hand we can now meet a wish frequently expressed by customers, and on the other hand we can serve new market segments in certain regions. The agreement with Tensor enables us to quickly and flexibly strengthen our regional presence in attractive markets.”

ML System, a manufacturer of humidification equipment for the printing industry, has established a new operation in Mississauga, Ontario. The company has operated in Europe for the last 23 years and has sold in the U.S. for the last 16.

The company was founded by Marianne Jager and Leo Rasmussen in 1987. The company produced humidification systems for the horticulture sector but soon discovered that other sectors also benefit from humidification systems. ML System manufactures a high pressure humidification system which it says is an alternative to conventional steam humidification and uses 100 times less energy when compared to conventional electric steam systems. To date, there have been 5,500 systems installed worldwide.

The company formerly distributed in the U.S. via Husson Inc, its sole distributor, but recently also opened up a U.S. location in Wisconsin. In Canada, the company has named Julian Iosifescu as a Sales Manager.

Agfa has announced it will be partnering with Toronto-based Nustream Graphic to expand its presence in Canada.

"We are very excited about working with Agfa. Today, cost-effective solutions that help printers reduce waste and improve efficiency while protecting margins are in high demand," said Guy Potvin, Executive Vice-President at Nustream Graphic, "Agfa's portfolio of products has been well-received in the industry and increasingly in Canada because they meet these requirements."

Nustream has tasked industry veteran Johnathan Rogers to handle sales in the Ontario market and Steve Daigle to manage the Quebec market. Daigle was previously the President of Montreal-based Vic Couleur.

Beginning June 2010, Heidelberg Canada Graphic Equipment will distribute Asahi's photopolymer plates and equipment in Canada.

Focused primarily on the flexography sector, Asahi Photoproducts recently launched what the company describes as a VOC-free, water-washable photopolymer plate, called AWP DEF. The product is said to have a high ink transfer and a wide tonal range.

"Heidelberg Canada is delighted to establish this relationship with Asahi. Our flexo customers have long valued the productivity enhancing features of Asahi photopolymers. Their innovative new products, such as AWP, continue to differentiate Asahi as a superior manufacturer of flexo plates," stated Richard Armstrong, President of Heidelberg Canada, in a press release.

The Asahi Kasei Corporation was founded in Japan in 1931 and is considered one of the leading chemical companies in Asia, with 28,000 employees working in research, production, sales and application technology departments. The European headquarters of the Asahi is located in Brussels.

HP Canada announced that Ernest Green & Son Ltd. (EGS), one of Canada’s largest independent distributors of graphic arts products and services, has joined the HP Commercial Channel Partner program. EGS, with a team of 25 sales and nine technical staff, will sell HP’s large-format Designjet printers and commercial Scitex devices nationally.
For more than 60 years, EGS had been based in Mississauga, Ontario, and now has stocking warehouses in Vancouver, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto and Montreal.
“We’ve seen an increased demand from our customers for high-quality digital printing solutions and we’re excited to provide them with the latest wide-format printing technology from HP,” said Mike Wildbore, National Business Manager for Wide-Format Equipment at EGS. The company plans to schedule HP-based demonstration road shows in the coming months.

“We’re confident that this new relationship with EGS will benefit our customers as they transition from analog to digital printing,” said Danny Ionescu, VP, Graphic Solutions Business, HP Canada. “In addition to allowing us to reach new markets, this collaboration will provide our customers with access to the latest wide-format digital printing technology needed to grow their existing business.”

Graphic Printing Roller has become an licensed manufacturer and seller of rollers using Ryno roller compounds. Graphic Printing Roller, which has plants in Markham, Ontario and St. Leonard, Quebec, will also produce HydroMetric, Web Red rollers for the Canadian market.

According to Ryno Rollers, its products are made to allow printers to use the lightest roller settings to maximize plate and roller life plus has the added benefit of better performance with less wear on plates, bearings and journals.

"Ryno Rollers is pleased to welcome Graphic Printing Roller Ltd. to the Ryno family," said Ryno Roller's Vice-President of Sales and Marketing Roger Giza. "Graphic Printing Roller customers across Canada can now enjoy the benefits of cooler running rollers which absorb little or no roller wash and thus swell, shrink, and harden less than rubber rollers after extended exposure to ink and roller wash."

Goss International announced it has integrated Akiyama's North American operations within its own U.S. operations. As a result, Goss will sell and support Akiyama products in both Canada and the United States.

Under the agreement, several members of the Akiyama sales and service team in North America have joined the Goss International organization. Goss International’s large-scale U.S. parts and service operation now supports printing companies operating more than 800 Akiyama presses in North America. Independent dealers will continue to market Akiyama products in some regions of the United States and Canada, working collaboratively through Goss International.

Both companies are affiliated with Shanghai Electric Corporation, with Akiyama being controlled by the Chinese company. Shanghai Electric became Goss' second-largest shareholder in June 2009.

"Our North American infrastructure provides a substantial platform to support existing customers as well as a growth strategy for Akiyama products in the region,” said Goss International president and CEO Jochen Meissner. “The Jprint presses in particular, with their innovative perfecting technology, offer a compelling alternative to traditional four-over-four sheetfed perfectors.”

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