Bullfrog Power on Earth Day, April 22, noted a milestone it had reached with Ricoh Canada, which has been using Bullfrog Power's green electricity program to reduce its environmental impact for more than a decade. With more than 5,500 megawatt hours of electricity put onto the grid on its behalf, Ricoh Canada has displaced more than 900 tonnes of carbon dioxide, which is equivalent to the emissions from more than 3.5 million kilometres driven by an average passenger vehicle.

"We're delighted to celebrate Ricoh's tenth anniversary with Bullfrog Power alongside the company's global commitment to the RE100 to use a minimum of 30 percent renewable energy by 2030 and 100 percent by 2050," said Ron Seftel, CEO, Bullfrog Power.

Through the agreement, Bullfrog Power ensures that renewable electricity is put into the grid to match the amount of conventional electricity that Ricoh Canada's distribution centre in Concord, Ontario, uses. Across Canada, Bullfrog's green electricity comes from a blend of wind and low-impact hydro power sourced from new Canadian renewable energy facilities.

"The partnership with Bullfrog is a great example of Ricoh's longstanding collaborations on sustainability as we strive to reduce our environmental impacts across the entire business," said Glenn Laverty, Senior Vice President, Marketing, Ricoh Americas; President and Chief Executive Officer, Ricoh Canada, Inc. "We take great pride in our new commitment to RE100 and in working with Bullfrog Power as part of Ricoh's global efforts to implement measures against climate change and enhance sustainable environmental management."

Ricoh Canada is also contributing to Bullfrog Power's community renewable projects program that has supported more than 130 community-based projects across Canada. In Ontario, the Bullfrog-powered community helped to fund a 225-panel solar project on Kew Beach Junior Public School in Toronto's The Beach neighbourhood.
The Printing House has been recognized as one of Canada's Greenest Employers for 2018, based on the criteria of Mediacorp Canada Inc., which manages Canadian employment programs and events. Mediacorp explains The Printing House's green volunteerism goes hand-in-hand with its philosophy of being eco-friendly in its operations.

TPH explains that 93.7 percent of the paper it purchased in 2017 was environmentally certified, with 91.5 percent of the paper designated as Forest Stewardship Council-certified. “Our continued goal is to inch ahead to 100 percent,” said Andrew O'Born, VP of Business Development.

TPH, among a range of initiatives, also points to recognition as the most sustainable and forest friendly printer in Canada – number two in North America – by Canopy in 2017, as well as its implementation of a Paper Procurement Policy in 2015, with guidelines provided by not-for-profit partner Canopy. This policy ensures TPH is not sourcing from ancient and endangered forest hotspots.
More than 80 Gold, Silver and Bronze Awards were presented to printers and technology suppliers from across the country at the 12th annual Canadian Printing Awards last November. Among these outstanding work of print, Burlington, Ontario’s Artcraft Label, led by Alain Paquette, swept the Labels, Flexography category.

Among the company’s three winning wine label projects, Monarch Late Harvest took Gold and was among four finalists for Best of Show at the 2017 awards gala.

Gold Award production challenge
The Monarch Late Harvest project was run on a Nilpeter FB5500 at 4,500 metres, with the goal of creating an illusion of motion. The label was printed on a silver metalized paper for the wing tips to add a dash of shine, explains Artcraft, subtle enough to look like they are dancing.

The white ink had to be near perfect in laydown to cover the naming panels, as if it were white semigloss paper; and then behind only the CMYK gradations of orange and Match Colour for the Monarch wings. An overall flood of imprintable matte UV was applied and finished off with a tactile rotary silkscreen.

Gold: Monarch Late Harvest,
Artcraft Label

Silver: Kacaba Susan’s Sauvignon,
Artcraft Label

Bronze: Kacaba Pinot Gris,
Artcraft Label
At a fundraising dinner hosted by ICON Digital Productions of Markham, ON, on April 5, 2018, at The School of Fine Dining, ICON raised a total of $35,000 for Geneva Centre for Autism (GCA) programs and services.

The ICON Dinner Party for GCA, explains the Centre, brought together more than 100 business leaders, philanthropists, community members and autism advocates from across Toronto. Keynote speaker Alex Shifrin, Managing Partner at LP/AD, discussed the need for diversity and inclusion in the workplace and society as a whole. The evening ended with an impromptu live auction.

“At every turn, the team at ICON seeks an opportunity to support our mission, and because of this Geneva Centre for Autism is able to further our mission of community inclusion, greater specialized support, and answering the diverse needs of our community,” said Abe Evreniadis, Chief Executive Officer of Geneva Centre for Autism.

Geneva Centre for Autism is described as an international leader in the development and delivery of clinical intervention services and training. As a full service agency, Geneva Centre for Autism offers personalized, strength-based programming for over 3,000 individuals and families in Toronto. It’s Training Institute and International Autism Symposium, explains the Centre, build professional capacity worldwide to empower all individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) to reach their full potential.
At the London Book Fair on April 11, HP introduced its Piazza book printing service, which the company describes as a set of independent and interlocking cloud-based book manufacturing and distribution services for publishers. HP explains Piazza allows publishers to build a virtual warehouse for the management, automation, distribution, print, and direct fulfillment of book orders, while holding zero inventory.
“Pearson is undergoing a digital transformation to become a simpler, more efficient business and our UK book supply chain is a key part of this,” said Stephen Jones, Pearson Director of Global Direct Procurement. “We are moving from a ‘print to warehouse’ to a ‘print to order, direct to consumer’ model. Partnering with our print providers, HP Piazza will support us in managing our print workflow and optimizing our book supply chain to help reduce costs and better serve our customers.”
HP explains the Piazza platform focuses on the needs of publishers in a world where short-run digital production is an everyday reality. Designed to connect through its PrintOS SiteFlow technology, HP explains Piazza provides accurate, transparent SLA management, quick time to market and reduced waste.
“HP Piazza has enabled us to change the conversation and to offer solutions that have a direct impact on the publisher's bottom line, improving their profitability and efficiency.” said Rob Hutcheson, Managing Director of Ashford Colour Press, “Piazza is a gamechanger for Ashford in that we can expand our focus on supply chain initiatives and now offer true print-to-order, and book of one manufacturing.

“For the publishers, this means titles are always available, never out of print and, for us, exciting new opportunities to further strengthen our client relationships,” continued Hutcheson. “Today, we are receiving hundreds of direct orders for titles stored in the Piazza repository, producing thousands of books - all printed to fulfil orders that the publisher has received, rather than to meet forecast sales.”
FPInnovations, a not-for-profit organization that supports Canadian forest sectors, welcomed the Quebec government's latest economic plan, économique du Québec, which provides for an additional $6.5 million in forest-sector workforce training. The organization said the move helps Quebec's hardwood forests, and particularly in southern Quebec.

“Improving productivity requires innovation and the introduction of new processes and technologies. These innovations call for renewed skills that must be mastered by the workforce active in Quebec's forest sector," said Stéphane Renou, President and CEO, FPInnovations.

FPInnovations also points to the injection of a total of nearly $127 million to bolster the forest sector in the following initiatives: Programme Innovation Bois (Wood innovation program), supporting the development of private forests, fighting against the spruce budworm, additional reforestation in public forests, and shoring up the industry through innovative solutions.

FPInnovations will be heavily involved in what it describes as the government’s 2018-2023 development strategy for Quebec's forest products industry (Stratégie de développement de l’industrie québécoise des produits forestiers). FPInnovations’ R&D laboratories are located in Québec City, Montréal and Vancouver, and it has technology transfer offices across Canada.
The Xerox Research Centre of Canada (XRCC) reached an innovation milestone receiving its 2,500th U.S. patent, entitled Silver Nanoparticle-Sulfonated Polyester Composite Powders and Methods of Making the Same. The patent, according to XRCC, reinforces its global position in advanced materials research and development.

The patent was invented by senior research scientists Valerie Farrugia and Barkev Keoshkerian. XRCC explains the process uses an environmentally-friendly approach to create silver-polymeric nanoparticles that can be built up for use in 3D printing. Most powders of this type are ground from a larger size, explains XRCC, but through aggregation and coalescence, the particle’s size, shape and structure can be controlled more precisely.

XRCC explains applications that can benefit from these composite powders include a range of antibacterial applications for customizable medical devices, textiles, smart coatings, kitchen tools, toys and countless household items.

Established in the Toronto suburb of Mississauga, Ontario, in 1974, today the XRCC also actively helps Canadian start-ups commercialize their ideas. To this end, XRCC established an Innovation Hub that enables startups to use their seed funding to develop technologies, rather than spending it on capital expenses.
Print Digital Solutions (PDS) on May 4, 2018, is holding a daylong open house to showcase new printing systems that it distributes in the market.

The open house event, taking place at the company’s Scarborough location, is scheduled to run from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm and will feature newer systems like the Duplo DFL-500 3, which provides laminating, foil and dry coat with formulated film that is melted onto the sheet. The system’s foil capabilities leverage what Duplo describes as unique adhesive rollers that stick to the toner. It targets applications like book covers, business cards, postcards direct mailers and brochures.

Also on display will be the OKI 942, a 5-colour with white toner print engine. PDS will also be showing new digital garment printers from OKI, model 8432 CMY + White, and model 6410 with neon. Both of these printers can be matched up with the HIX Heat press line.

PDS, in addition to its distribution agreements with MBM and Mutoh, will also be highlighting a range of systems from Multigraf, which develops one-pass slit, cut, crease and fold technology.
Webcom Inc. of Toronto signed an agreement to acquire York Bookbinders, a 34-year-old business specializing in hardcover book-bindery services. The deal is expected to close on April 27, 2018, and will add 7.5-million hardcover books per year to Webcom's manufacturing capacity.

The acquisition also boosts Webcom’s digital book manufacturing investments, which the company pegs at $30 million over the past few years. Webcom explains the purchase reconfirms its commitment to meet a growing publisher demand for unique casebinding capabilities.

This is Webcom’s second expansion of its casebinding services in 2018, following the recent investment in digital casebinding systems from GP2 Technologies.

“The integration of York Bookbinders into Webcom’s Toronto manufacturing facility significantly improves Webcom’s capacity to support book publishers with cost competitive, responsive service for hardcover books in quantities ranging from book of one to thousands of copies,” said Mike Collinge, President and CEO of Webcom. “This acquisition will augment Webcom’s current POD, ASR, digital inkjet and softcover production capabilities supporting Canadian and global book publishers with an efficient, full-service North American book manufacturing and distribution hub.”

New capabilities allow Webcom to meet the high-quality standards for NASTA-compliant educational titles, library bookbinding and a range of elaborate casebound book formats. Webcom explains the addition of York Bookbinders’ skilled hardcover book operators, customer base and modern binding equipment aligns with its goal of full service manufacturing support of global and mid-size publisher needs.  
“York Bookbinders’ current customer base of Canadian trade printers, brokers and agencies mirrors Webcom’s Coatings Canada division customer base,” said Collinge, “It is an opportunity to improve our competitiveness and create compelling product offerings for our trade customers by combining coating finishing and bindery services.”

The management of both companies is developing a 6-month transition plan to consolidate equipment and operations at Webcom’s plant.
At Dscoop Dallas 2018, HP unveiled the PrintOS Marketplace, described by the company as a new solutions community for the HP PrintOS cloud-based print production operating system. Designed to provide tools for printers using HP technologies, Marketplace will offer production and design tools and services from both HP and third parties.

Opening this summer, Marketplace will be open to any vendor to offer subscription-based apps for PrintOS members that help HP customers automate production, expand offerings and grow business. Today, PrintOS has 5,400 printing providers subscribed to the system, including owners of HP Indigo, HP PageWide Industrial and HP Scitex presses.

“Our partners have innovative solutions. The PrintOS Marketplace will serve as a platform to spread the innovation and will help customers to adapt faster to the changing print market,” said Alon Bar-Shany, General Manager, HP Indigo, HP Inc.

OneFlow System Systems and HYBRID Software are the first two partners enrolled in the PrintOS Marketplace. Pre-release versions of their app solutions were demonstrated in the HP Dscoop showcase.

OneFlow’s AutoFlow solution automates manual prepress operations including artwork fetching, checking, fixing and manipulation. HYBRID Software’s PACKZilizer is a cloud-based application to prepare packaging files for production.

Additionally, some 20 HP solutions partners have already integrated their solutions with PrintOS.
Asia Pulp & Paper opens up its Indah Kiat Perawang mill to illustrate five years of work to become a progressive paper producer with interests rooted in its concession communities

For a pictorial report of APP Indonesia, visit PrintAction's February 2017 article, A Look Inside Asia Pulp & Paper.

Asia Pulp & Paper in February 2018 reached the five-year anniversary of its seminal Forest Conservation Policy, which set into motion a series of massive and aggressive initiatives to transform one of the world’s largest integrated pulp and paper corporations. Its decision to place sustainability at the heart of its operations was actually formalized a year earlier in its Sustainability Roadmap Vision 2020, when Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) committed to zero deforestation. This commitment was then formalized in the Forest Conservation Policy (FCP) based on APP developing a plantation-driven business model and putting an immediate end to sourcing pulpwood materials from suppliers involved with natural forest clearance.

Today, all 38 of its external wood suppliers are evaluated for FCP compliance and the company explains, that outside of two minor breaches that were quickly resolved, it has maintained its FCP commitments. “Five years ago we turned our company around and it has been a good story of change,” says Ian Lifshitz, VP of Sustainability & Stakeholder Relations, Americas, APP. “We have really seen a shift in our organization in the way we approach the community, forest conservation and zero deforestation. The key thing is five years later the FCP is holding. We have not broken our policy. We continue to maintain and evolve.”

FCP commitments are rigorously reviewed every six months at an APP-hosted forum with environmental stakeholders like Greenpeace, which years earlier targeted APP’s practices through highly public campaigns. Greenpeace and similar NGO stakeholders, as well as government agencies, engaged in the FCP process are now commending APP for its progress and work on the ground, which has since moved well beyond forestry protection into a holistic approach to help develop prosperity for Indonesia.

Opportunities of the forest
According to 2017 numbers provided by the Indonesian Ministry of Environment and Forestry, 27.8 million Indonesians live in poverty and 36.7 percent, or 10.2 million people in the country, are below the poverty line in rural areas where forestry and/or agriculture are the main source of economic livelihood. Indonesia’s forest area comprises 126.1 million hectares, equivalent to 66.9 percent of the country’s total landmass. Some 1.3 million jobs – directly and indirectly – are created by the pulp and paper industry.

“It is important for us to put our industry in the context of the most critical issue facing Indonesia today, which is poverty,” says Veronika Renyaan, Sustainability and Stakeholder Engagement, APP Indonesia. She explains APP now invests more than $13 million annually in community development programs, including the company’s unique Integrated Forestry and Farming System introduced in 2015 with its own investment budget of $10 million until 2020.

Under Indonesian regulations every forest concession holder must set aside 20 percent of the land for community use and 10 percent for conservation. APP is currently operating beyond these marks providing 22 percent of its concessions for community use and 21 percent for conservation, with the remaining 57 percent being used as plantation forest. The Integrated Forestry and Farming System (IFFS) is a key driver of these percentages in APP’s effort to support the economic development of 500 villages in landscapes surrounding its concessions.

“There are 180 villages within our concessions, but we also map out villages outside of our concession areas to a radius of 10 kilometres,” says Neglasari Martini, Head of Sustainability and Stakeholder Engagement, APP, noting this accounts for 799 villages, which may hold anywhere from around 100 people to larger size communities of more than 1,000.

Martini explains the 500 chosen villages are based first on the approximate 200 touching APP’s concessions and the other 300 are based on social mapping, in terms of location, land conflicts and potential threats to APP’s forest concessions, which constantly face illegal logging and the potential for third-party fires being started in, or crossing over into, its concessions.

“Fire is a very complex issue in Indonesia… often it is because of land disputes. People may want to claim land so they burn it and then plant palm oil. It is very complex to pinpoint,” explains Martini. APP has invested more than $103 million since 2015 on forest fire management. It began working with British Columbia’s TREK Wildland Services and Working on Fire from South Africa to help train its fire teams, build fire towers and to establish better hotspot detection for real-time monitoring, understanding this is a critical issue for APP’s efforts to work with communities.

Before the IFFS program begins within a community, a business plan must be put together to understand how the land will be used, which typically involves planting vegetables or fruit, managing cows, or developing more schooling or housing. The program also requires the establishment of a village institution to manage the money within a cooperative model.

“It is like micro-financing and they need an evolving fund, so some of their profit returns to the institutions for the other villagers to use the money,” says Martini.
This approach not only improves farming yields and the development of more skills and services for the village as a whole, it also provides forest protection and conservation. A facilitator is based in the village to help implement the program.

“The HR manager [from APP’s Indah Kiat Perawang mill] runs a farming community program,” says Lifshitz, “so there is crossover from employees at the mill who actually work on the program, directly impacting them.”

Perawang pulp and paper
The Indah Kiat Perawang mill is enormous covering a square footage area of more than 2,400 hectares, holding nine paper machines, four pulp lines and six large-size tissue lines in addition to smaller machines. When last checked, more than 40 kilometres of pipe – often of large diametre – is used to feed and relieve the mill’s operations. One of the mill’s current capital investment projects focuses on updating its power cycle, which has an install capacity of 1,000 megawatts.

The project will also help power local communities, which is an existing APP initiative. “Sometimes the government power supply is not enough and we always have spare capacity that we can sell,” says Sufianto Alfian, Head of BU Commodity Division at Indah Kiat Pulp & Paper Perawang. “But we are not making profit from it, rather creating a good relationship with the community.”

The Perawang mill has a pulp capacity of around 8,000 metric tonnes per day, about 50 percent of which is used for paper production, with its own output of 3,000 to 4,000 metric tonnes per day. This equates to anywhere from 100,000 to 120,000 metric tonnes of paper produced per month. The mill’s Paper Machine 3 (PM3), as an example, has a target running speed of 1,350 metres per minute and an average uptime operating efficiency of between 85 and 90 percent. PM3 typically runs 24/7 for about 40 days before shutting down for a day of maintenance. It takes about one hour for PM3 to produce what the team refers to as a jumbo roll – 50 tonnes – and around 1,200 tonnes per day.

Hinting at the scale of Perawang’s vertical integration, which includes a new Bielomatik-driven converting plant, its pulp production is fueled by around 50 percent of APP’s wood supply (creating black liquor), with the other half converted into usable fibre. Alfian explains, “The integration is quite extensive here, from the seedlings that turn into fibre production and even the final products going to customers – all of it from seeds.”

APP started its forestry research program at Perawang in 1990, which was then replicated in Jambi province in 1995, followed by three other regional research centres in 2005. The company develops Eucalyptus and Acacia for its commercial plantations. “We need to find the best quality of wood to fulfill the needs of our mill,” says Yodim Kusuma, who leads Seed Development, in the Perawang mill’s research facility.

The company’s research facilities face more pressure since the beginning of FCP and its zero deforestation pillar, as APP must focus more on growth and yield assessments to determine if there will be enough wood supply for its mills. Its first projections done in 2013, to the year 2020, identified a small gap in 2019, but it will be easily overcome with improvements in yield and other operational efficiencies. Updated projections in 2015, looking toward 2025, also indicate there will be enough wood supply in APP’s plantation model.

Previously, APP harvested its trees in eight-year cycles at the high end, but the work of the research team allows for harvesting more often after just five years. “Only after five years will the eucalyptus properties meet the criteria of the mill, because they have wood density, the hardness of the wood, and also cellulose content and lignin content criteria,” explains Kusuma. “After two years, the wood is not hard enough so the wood consumption is still low. But after five to eight years, it will be too hard and it will be difficult for the wood-chipping process.”

Using a spacing of three by two metres, Kusuma explains the company can grow 1,666 trees per hectare, which creates an ultimate yield target of 225 cubic metres per hectare. The operation is currently hitting 150 cubic metres per hectare, with a survival rate of between 70 and 80 percent. Perawang’s research team continues to work with Eucalyptus hybrid clones – without DNA manipulation as regulated by the government – to develop what it describes as plus trees.

“When we find a plus tree, we will multiple it on a large scale,” says Kusuma. “For Eucalyptus, we can produce by cutting, but for Acacia we use seeds because we have not optimized our cutting production for Acacia.” The Eucalyptus clones are created from cuttings after about three months of various quality control and fertilization stages in the lab. They are then placed in the nursery and ultimately back into the plantation to restart tree growth for the future.

For a pictorial report of APP Indonesia, visit PrintAction's February 2017 article, A Look Inside Asia Pulp & Paper.
On April 3, 2018, students of Ryerson University’s School of Graphic Communications Management will host the program’s annual GCM Colloquium at the Mattamy Athletic Centre (formerly Maple Leaf Gardens) in Toronto. This year’s GCM Colloquium includes a Business Plan Expo component, creating a larger networking event for GCM students and members of Canada’s printing industry. 

The Colloquium, called Evolve: Startups, Mergers & Acquisitions in the Graphic Arts Industry, will feature the following speakers, who will present scheduled keynotes on the following topics, before joining a panel discussion:

6:00 pm: Deanne Sinclair, Cambridge Label Inc., who will focus on Cambridge Label’s digital print start-up and the lessons she has learned from this endeavor.

6:30 pm: Jay Mandarino, CJ Graphics Inc. who will focus on how he built up CJ Graphics Inc., its position in the marketplace and today’s business environment, and why companies need to pursue mergers and acquisitions.

7:00 pm: Peter Ha and Rhodi Iliadou, Equal Parts Studio, who will focus on why and how they started their own design studio, as well as lessons learned during their first year.

7:30 pm: Panel Discussion / Q&A

The GCM Business Plan Expo component, featuring the graphic arts business ideas of more than 140 graduating GCM students, begins at 4:00 pm and continues until 8:00 pm, when the entire event is scheduled to end.

To register for this free event, visit Evolve

Idealliance, an organization focused on workflow processes and technologies for the printing industry, recently awarded G7 System Certification and G7 Press Control System Certification to two Koenig & Bauer colour control and colour reporting systems: Instrument Flight Color Control by System Brunner and the newest version of its QualityPass software for sheetfed presses. Koenig & Bauer explains it is now the only press manufacturer to hold two G7 System Certifications.

“Our organization has continually invested in development and cooperation’s to ensure our customers produce the highest quality printing with colour control and colour reporting that can be specifically monitored throughout the print run,” said Chris Travis, Director of Technology for KBA North America. “This clearly sets us apart from our competitors and demonstrates our ongoing commitment for the highest quality standards.”

Last fall, the Idealliance G7 Press Control System Certification program confirmed that Koenig & Bauer’s Instrument Flight Control technology by System Brunner can monitor and control a production press run according to G7 gray balance and tonality specifications.

Koenig & Bauer explains its Instrument Flight Control technology by System Brunner is the world’s first press control system to elevate G7 from a calibration procedure to a complete process control system from prepress to pressroom.

In addition to G7 metrics, Instrument Flight also monitors and controls TVI (dot gain) in the individual colours, the spread of TVI, solid ink densities, L*a*b* colorimetric targets and more of a reference print condition or standard such as GRACoL, ISO 12647-2, the System Brunner Globalstandard or any specific company targets.

Instrument Flight is able to prioritize the different metrics according to different requirements, such as G7 settings. The real-time print process diagnostics and quality rating informs the press operators at any time during print production if they print in the target specification.

“The key for consistent colour match lies in observing and controlling all variables influencing the offset printing process,” said Michael Eichler, KBA North America Sales Director of Service Select. “System Brunner Instrument Flight is an outstanding tool which goes way beyond ink density and L*a*b* in order to achieve and maintain the best result according to G7 tonality specifications.

"Instrument Flight elevates G7 from a calibration procedure to a complete process control system," continued Eichler. "The initial System Brunner on-site support service and training brings the press in line with the company’s specific workflow, a big benefit which increases the performance of the whole printing system.”

Idealliance has also certified the newest Version 8 of Koenig & Bauer’s QualityPass software for sheetfed presses. Version 8 of QualityPass produces reports on the quality and consistency of print produced and provides a score as a percentage against the required fields of the ISO 12647-2 standard, such as CIE LAB values, dot gain (TVI) and trapping.

QualityPass software allows sheetfed printers to be able to demonstrate colour consistency throughout a production run via the reports produced at the end of the job by the software and provides reassurance for a printers’ customers.

QualityPass reports are generated as a PDF for every job produced and contain every measurement taken by either the ErgoTronic Color Control device or the QualiTronic ColorControl inline system. The viewer of the report can analyze the quality of print produced and make the required adjustments to improve the scoring, for example; tensioning blankets or making alterations to the plate output curves.

The Koenig & Bauer QualityPass software system was evaluated by the G7 System Certification Program for the calibration of a printing device to meet the G7 grayscale definition using four 1-D curves and support the application of the G7 methodology in process control.

Accompanying each G7 Certified System is an Application Data Sheet (ADS), designed to assist print producers and end users in the proper use and operation of their system. Utilizing a G7 Certified System ensures the ability to operate a consistent G7-managed workflow, which has been proven to expand efficiencies, reduce costs of operation, and speed time to market of printed materials.
Eastman Kodak Company reported financial results for the fourth quarter and full year 2017. Revenues for the full year 2017 were US$1.5 billion, down seven percent (or US$112 million) from 2016. The revenue decline, explains Kodak, was driven by volume and pricing declines within the company’s commercial print business and volume declines in the company’s consumer inkjet and industrial film and chemicals businesses.

The company, however, reported GAAP net earnings of US$94 million for the year ended December 31, 2017, which includes a tax benefit of US$101 million due to the release of a valuation allowance in the fourth quarter of 2017.

“2017 was a year of investment in our strategic growth priorities which bodes well for the future,” said Jeff Clarke, Chief Executive Officer, Kodak. “We also eliminated several business initiatives while continuing to reduce cost and drive greater efficiency in the company. We enter 2018 with a stronger growth profile and more productive operations.”

Kodak explains key product lines achieved strong year-over-year growth for the full year 2017, including: Volume for Flexcel NX Plates grew by 17 percent, volume for Sonora Process Free Plates grew by 21 percent; and annuity revenues for the Prosper inkjet platform grew by 13 percent. The company ended the year with a cash balance of US$344 million, compared with US$434 million at the end of 2016.

“Our use of cash in 2017 included meaningful investments in the Ultrastream inkjet platform, Flexcel NX packaging, Sonora X plates, advanced materials and brand licensing which will contribute to growth,” said David Bullwinkle, Kodak’s Chief Financial Officer. “In the fourth quarter of 2017, we reprioritized our investments to focus on shorter payback periods and reduced costs which will improve our ability to generate cash in 2018 and beyond.”

Print Systems Division (PSD), Kodak’s largest division, had Q4 revenues of US$261 million, a six percent decline compared with Q4 in 2016. Operational EBITDA for the quarter was US$16 million, compared with US$39 million for the same period a year ago.

Print Systems Division had full-year 2017 revenues of US$942 million, a seven percent decline compared with 2016. Full-year Operational EBITDA was US$58 million, a decline of US$48 million compared with the prior year. Kodak explains the decline was due primarily to industry pricing pressures, higher aluminum costs and an overall commercial print industry slowdown.

Enterprise Inkjet Systems Division (EISD) had fourth-quarter revenues of US$39 million, down from US$43 million in the same period in 2016. Operational EBITDA was US$3 million, an increase of US$1 million compared with the fourth quarter of 2016.

For the full year 2017, EISD revenues were US$144 million, compared with US$166 million in 2016. Operational EBITDA for the full year 2017 increased by US$21 million from 2016 to US$5 million in 2017. The results, explains Kodak, reflect the positive impact of cost control actions and continued strong growth in Prosper annuities. Kodak’s next-generation inkjet writing system, Ultrastream, is scheduled for launch in 2019.

Flexographic Packaging Division (FPD) had 2017 revenues of US$145 million, compared with US$132 million in the prior year, or a 10 percent improvement. Full-year Operational EBITDA of US$31 million is an improvement of Us$7 million compared with the prior year.

Software and Solutions Division (SSD) had 2017 revenues of US$85 million, down from Us$90 million last year. Full-year Operational EBITDA remained flat compared with the prior year.

Consumer and Film Division (CFD) revenues for the full year were US$198 million, down from US$221 million in 2016. Operational EBITDA for the division was down US$32 million for the year.

Advanced Materials and 3D had Operational EBITDA for the full year of negative US$26 million. Kodak explains this division took significant cost actions in Q4 and sharpened its focus on investments in light-blocking particles, printed electronics and advanced materials.

2018 guidance is for revenues of US$1.5 billion to US$1.6 billion and Operational EBITDA of US$60 million to US$70 million.
Printing Industries of America issued a response to the recent announcement by the United States Department of Commerce regarding preliminary anti-dumping duties on Canadian imports of Uncoated Groundwood (UGW) Paper.

Tariffs on Canadian UGW paper, explains Printing Industries of America (PIA) will unnecessarily burden printing companies and their customers with cost headaches while forcing alternatives to print.

“Yesterday, the Department of Commerce announced preliminary anti-dumping duties of up to 22.16 percent on Canadian imports of Uncoated Groundwood Paper. This is compounded by preliminary countervailing duties averaging 6.5 percent on the same product announced in January,” explained Michael Makin, President and CEO of the PIA, in a written statement. “These tariffs will negatively impact paper used for newsprint, directories, book publishing, and advertising circulars, raising costs for production and, ultimately, print customers. In an industry in which it is difficult to absorb forced cost increases, the effect will likely be less production, fewer pages printed, a faster shift to digital content of news and books, and more diversion of advertising from print to electronic platforms.”

Makin continued to explain this tariff havoc has been caused by one company in the paper industry filing a trade remedy case alleging unfair trade practices by Canada. He explains that the majority of U.S. newsprint manufacturers and trade associations representing the industry, as well as U.S. customers, oppose the trade petition on UGW paper.

“Demand for newsprint has declined by 75 percent in North America since 2000 due to electronic diversion and change of customer reading habits, not because of unfair competition,” Makin continued to explain in the association’s statement. “PIA believes firmly in the power of print to deliver news and information, and its member companies work daily to innovate and maintain print’s relevance in today’s world of multi-channel communication delivery. Tariffs on Canadian UGW paper will unnecessarily burden printing companies and their customers with cost headaches while forcing alternatives to print.

“PIA and its allies in the Stop Tariffs on Printers and Publishers (STOPP) Coalition have gone directly to the Department of Commerce and Capitol Hill to make the case opposing tariffs on UGW paper imported from Canada and will continue to urge the Trump Administration to reject this trade case in light of the harmful impact such tariffs will have on a key segment of the American manufacturing economy.”

Additionally, Makin made the following statement regarding the recently announced Trump Administration policy on imported steel and aluminum:

“Promoting job growth in domestic manufacturing is at the core of PIA’s mission and we appreciate President Trump highlighting the importance of the manufacturing sector and its workers. However, there are 800,000 jobs associated with the U.S. printing industry and PIA’s first and foremost goal is to ensure the companies that provide those jobs are able to purchase equipment – including printing plates made of aluminum – without higher production costs associated with potential tariffs.

"PIA is closely monitoring the details of the recently announced steel and aluminum tariff to determine potential negative impact on printing facilities, possible exemptions for key components of printing equipment, and other aspects of the tariff case as the specifics of the policy unfold.”
Page 1 of 31

Subscription Centre

New Subscription
Already a Subscriber
Customer Service
View Digital Magazine Renew

Most Popular

Latest Events

Insource Expo
May 9-10, 2018
DIA Golf
June 14, 2018
LabelExpo Americas 2018
September 25-27, 2018
October 18-,