Industry Events

Four students from Peel Region's Gordon Graydon Memorial Secondary School once again brought home the top honours from the annual Phoenix Challenge International Flexographic Skills Competition in North Carolina.

The team of Chang Wang and Sharon Mai took the Gold Medal, which includes a US$1,000 bursary each. The team attained the top score of 574 out of a possible 600. The second team of Li-Anne Chang and Elina Shafigullina placed second with a score of 550.

"Watching Chong and Sharon work together on the press was like watching synchronized swimming,” said Bettylyn Krafft, the Events Chair and Event Organizer.

Gordon Graydon has a long history of excellence at the Phoenix Challenge competition, taking home the top honour the past five years. The competition attracts teams from all over North America; this year students participated from schools in Oklahoma, New Jersey, Indiana, Wisconsin, North Carolina, South Carolina and Ohio. An all-female team from New Jersey took third place with a score of 542.

The Phoenix Challenge Foundation was founded in 1998 as an all-volunteer, not-for-profit organization of industry professionals dedicated to the recruitment and development of the future workforce for flexography.

To support and find out more about the Gordon Graydon flexo program, contact Peter Belanger.

Building from the 5-year history of the Environmental Printing Awards, PrintAction magazine expands its awards program to celebrate more printing achievement, while continuing to support green initiatives.

The Canadian Printing Awards program is organized into three sections, including: five Environmental Printing categories, 20 Quality Printing categories, and four Industry Achievement categories. PrintAction will host the Canadian Printing Awards gala, with a sit-down dinner produced by executive chef Joe Levesque, on the first night of Graphics Canada (November 10, 2011) in Toronto.

The Industry Achievement categories are a free, nominations-based initiative to recognize leadership in Canadian printing, while the 20 Quality Printing categories are based on applications ranging from variable-data printing and direct-mail to book and newspaper manufacturing.

Environmental Printing remains a cornerstone of the Canadian Printing Awards, based on the 5-year development of five key categories, including: Most Environmentally Progressive Printing Company, 250+ employees; Most Environmentally Progressive Printing Company, 1 to 249 employees; Most Environmentally Progressive Printing Technology; Most Environmentally Progressive Packaging Project (all processes); and Most Environmentally Progressive Printing Project.

The PrintAction’s dedicated awards Webpage has all the available categories and important dates as well as guidelines and entry forms.

Visit the Canadian Printing Awards site.

PrintAction has been named the official media partner of this year's Graphics Canada show in Toronto. As such, we will be bringing you the latest updates leading up to the show in November, in print and online. PrintAction will also produce the Official Show Guide for the show, complete with exhibitor profiles and show highlights.

"Our partnership with PrintAction strengthens Graphics Canada's position as the national graphics and printing exhibition," said Dan Mustata, Show Manager of Graphics Canada. "PrintAction's in-depth reach of the marketplace will help us keep the industry informed and updated on all aspects of the Graphics Canada trade show. It simply gives Graphics Canada unprecedented exposure to the entire graphics and printing industry."

Graphics Canada 2011 will take place between November 10-12 at the Toronto International Centre. For more information about this year's show, please visit

Please contact Sara Young ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) or Stephen Longmire ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) for advertising opportunities in the show guide.

Over 150 people, including students and printing professionals, gathered in Toronto last night to take part in the 7th-annual colloquium hosted by the third-year class of Ryerson’s Graphic Communication’s Management program.

“We're really proud of all the hard work we did,” says Emily Kuchta, who served as Master of Ceremonies with fellow third-year Ryerson student Ahmed Alabbas. “We've had the chance to visit so many companies in industry and see what they do. Now we had the chance to show them what we can do.”

Matthew Alexander, President of Colour Innovations, opened up the colloquium, called Envision and the Future of Print, with a 20-minute presentation about printing and the environment.

After walking the crowd through Colour Innovation’s long history in environmental leadership, he described the company's efforts to become the first Canadian member of the Sustainable Green Printing Partnership (SGP). Founded in part by the Printing Industries of America, SGP is an organization that audits and certifies the environmental position of printing companies.

While SGP currently lists 29 U.S.-based printers as members, Colour Innovations has spent nearly two years working to meet the stringent SGP guidelines and expects to complete the process later this year. Alexander described the difficulty in maintaining budget for environmental initiatives over the past couple of years of tight economic conditions. He points out, however, that the shareholders of large corporations are demanding environmental accountability, and that Nike recently became the first entity to state it will only source printing from SGP-certified shops – once existing supplier contracts run out.

Alexander also pointed out, that while the amount of required documentation can be a burden, the SGP program is ideally suited for medium-sized printing companies running a single facility.

Henry Laszutko of CCL Industries, a global packaging company with 59 facilities across North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia, Australia and Africa, spent 20 minutes speaking about innovative in his field. Laszutko, who was a primary architect of the annual Monopoly promotion by McDonald’s Restaurants, entertained the crowd with samples of metallic, RFID and 2-dimensional labels.

Before the final speaker of the evening, Gerry Visca of Redchair Branding, took the stage, Laszutko closed out his presentation with words of advice for the GCM students, including:

- First impressions count: Dress nice and talk clearly,

- Be confident, you’re Ryerson grads!,

- Write yourself a mission statement,

- Find something in this business you can be passionate about,

- Don’t be afraid to take risks but always test!,

- Don’t stop learning. Change is inevitable, like death and taxes!,

- Don’t take yourself too seriously. SMILE!

Matthew Alexander, President of Colour Innovations, will lead a session called Environmental Concerns in the Future of Printing at next week’s Envision Colloquium, hosted by the third-year class of Ryerson University’s Graphic Communications Management program.

Alexander is to be joined on stage by two other key industry executives in Henry Laszutko and Gerry Visca.

Laszutko, whose session is entitled Innovations in Packaging, has spent the past 22 years in sales management for Avery Dennison and CCL Label, the latter of which is described as the world's largest label converter – with 60 plants. Laszutko is currently the company’s top sales executive in the North American Healthcare Group.

Visca is an award-winning Creative Director with Redchair Branding and will lead an Envision Colloquium session called The Innovation Gap, Cultivating Creativity in Business. He has 15 years of senior experience working with top Canadian design agencies and directing more than 400 creative campaigns. Visca is a well-known keynote speaker, self-described as “Canada's Inspirational Coach.”

Alexander is one of the most-respected printing executives in Canadian printing and has spent the past several years building the environmental strategy of Toronto-based Colour Innovations. Supported by high-profile business partners like Pius Schneider and Steve Kendrick, Alexander is able to translate his extensive background in prepress and printing to the company’s marketing and sales teams.

The third-year class of Ryerson’s Graphic Communications Management program hosts a colloquium event every year, built around themes like Fusion, Exploring the Multimedia Mix (2010) and Globalization in Print (2009). As suggested by this year’s three speakers, Envision focuses on the innovation and future of print. The event begins at 6.30 pm on Thursday, February 17, at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Toronto.

Attendance is free, but organizers are asking attendees to RSVP

Or learn more about the Envision Colloquium

Toronto-based Flash Reproductions earned the most awards at the 2010 National Unisource Annual and Corporate Report Show (NUARs), recently held in downtown Toronto.

The NUARs program is built around three categories of print production: Annual Reports, Corporate Brochures, and Brand Identity. All entries, which were evaluated by a jury of six design professionals, must be produced on a paper brand that is distributed by Unisource Canada.

Flash Reproductions, led by President Rich Pauptit and VP David Gallant, took home six top prizes, including two Judge’s Choice Awards. Flash won a Judge’s Choice Award in the Corporate Brochure category for its production of the Red Canoe 2010 Catalogue (designed by The Production Kitchen). Its second Judge’s Choice came in the Brand Identity category for Culinary Papers Brand Identity (designed by Compass360 Branding Communications).

Somerset Graphics of Mississauga also fared well at the annual NUARs event, winning four awards and a Best of Show for its production of the Greater Toronto Airports Authority 2009 Annual Report, which was designed by Compass360 – with strategic direction provided by S.D. Corporate Communications.

The second NUARs Best of Show Award went to Signet Graphics for the printing of a corporate brochure for the Fragile X Research Foundation. Toronto-based Andora Graphics and C.J. Graphics also won a Judge’s Choice Award, while the remaining winners included: Annan & Sons of Toronto, Contact Creative Services of London, and Kromar Printing of Winnipeg.

Heidelberg Canada held a Christmas celebration last week at its facility in Mississauga, Ontario, which saw more than 100 industry members toast the season.

The Print World show, which ended Monday at the Direct Energy Centre in Toronto, drew a moderate but enthusiastic attendance. Despite having a smaller show area than previous years, vendors from across Canada were on hand, eager to show off their latest wares and make new connections. Below are scenes from the show, featuring some new and familiar faces from the industry.

Last week's Graph Expo saw thousands of attendees take in the latest in printing technologies in Chicago. While some attendees described the show as being busy, it was notably smaller is square footage and dominated by developers of toner- and inkjet-based technology.

Below are some photos from the show, including many familiar Canadian faces.

Each year, the Graphic Arts Show Company at its Executive Outlook conference review technologies to be shown at PRINT or Graph Expo. The program is conducted independently by the PrintCom Consulting Group.

This year, a panel of 19 industry consultants, analysts, educators and trade magazine editors selected the technologies as the most compelling technologies at Graph Expo 2010. Below are a list of products deemed "Must See 'em" by the panel. The full list, including full profiles and technologies the panel determined is "worth a look" can be downloaded here.



Agfa Graphics - Apogee Impose (Imposition for Apogee 7)
Color-Logic - Process Metallic Color System
EskoArtwork - i-cut Suite
interlinkOne - QReate And Track
Pitney Bowes - Transpromo Portal

Presstek - 75DI
Eastman Kodak - Prosper S10 Imprinting System with Process Colour

Offset Plates
Agfa Graphics - Amigo TS
Eastman Kodak - Trillian SP Thermal Plate
Epson America - Stylus Pro 7900 CTP system

Digital Presses
Fujifilm - Digital Inkjet J Press 720
Hewlett Packard - Indigo 7500 Toner Press
Konica Minolta - buzhub Press C8000
Xerox - Color 1000 Toner Press
Eastman Kodak - Prosper 5000XL Press
Screen - Truepress Jet520ZZ

Wide Format
Agfa Graphics - Jeti 1224 HDC FTR
EFI - VUTEk GS3200
Hewlett-Packard - Scitex LX800

Muller Martini - SigmaLine Digital Finishing

Agfa held a special seminar event titled Converging Marketing Trends at its new facility in Mississauga, Ontario this week. The event attracted nearly 100 members of the industry.

The event covered topics such as the state of the industry, current trends in inkjet usage, marketing strategies which incorporate social media and print as well as commentary from Agfa users. Featured speakers included Julian Mills of Prescient Digital, who spoke about social media and Dan Marx of the Specialty Graphic Imaging Association, who discussed the rising role of inkjet in today's printing mix. Agfa's Lawrence Robinson also made a presentation on the company's offerings in light of industry trends. The day concluded with a speech by Dan Deveau of Cameron Advertising Displays on the growing the business through the adoption of new digital imaging technologies.

The 160,000 square foot plant was the former Gandinnovations manufacturing plant, which was acquired by Agfa in 2009.

ION Print Solutions of Nisku, Alberta, held an open house to celebrate the installation of its Komori Lithrone S1040P press, with coater. Attended by over 150 guests, the event was also held in support of the Alberta Cancer Foundation, resulting in ION donating $50,000 to the cause.

The company's co-owners, Peter Fargey and Craig McEwen, installed the Komori press in July of the year, which is described as the largest sheetfed press in Alberta, as well as one of the largest across Western Canada. ION was formed in 2008 following the amalgamation of two well-known commercial production facilities in the region, Nisku Printing and Dial Printing.

The event was covered by the Edmonton Journal newspaper.

Read Edmonton Journal article

At its new facility in Mississauga, Agfa Canada teamed up with LYFT Visual and The Packaging Association to educate printers on POP, versioning and prototyping trends in the packaging sector.

The afternoon event, held on June 1, included a presentation by one of Canada's digital-printing pioneers, John Rogers, who co-founded Dots & Pixels before selling the company to NEBS Business Products Limited in September 2005.

Mark Caines, CEO of  LYFT Visual, also made a presentation after the recent installation of an Agfa Dotrix Modular press, which marked a Canadian first. As a division of Mississauga-based Boehmer Box, LYFT specializes in packaging design and production.

Agfa's UV-, inkjet-based Dotrix press has a printing width of 63 centimetres and is designed for roll-fed, single-pass production on range of substrates, from flexible foils to self-adhesives and holding cartons. The press provides coating or varnishing alleys, while it can be integrated with slitting, die-cutting or sheeter options.

Seminar presentations were then rounded out by Miriam Freibauer of Davis Strategic Design, Sam Papaleo of The Central Group and Agfa's Sheila Nysko.

Pictured right: John Rogers, one of Canada's digital-printing pioneers, of NEBS Canada.

In the third-annual PrintAction race day, held at Toronto's GrandPrix Kartways, Michael Steele, co-owner of Sydney Stone, topped 30 other printing-industry drivers to take first place.

The win makes it two consecutive top-place finishes for Sydney Stone, a Toronto-based technology service and distribution company, after last year's victory by Steele's business partner, Dylan Westgate.

Brad McDonald from Presstek took second spot in the 2010 Grand Prix heat, while Avanti's Stephen McWilliam rounded out the podium with a third-place finish. Placing first in the remaining heats were Bill Wilson of Heidelberg Canada (Heat 2), Maria Arias of Fujifilm Canada (Heat 3), and Bruce Morrison of Muller Martini Canada (Heat 4).

Steele also posted the fastest lap time of the day on the indoor-cart track. His 23:326 lap time was followed by Debbie Redgers at 23:587 and Heidelberg Canada's Bill Wilson at 23:661.

Photos, clockwise from top. Grand Prix winners: Presstek's Brad McDonald (2), Sydney Stone's Michael Steele (1), and Avanti's Stephen McWilliam (3). Heat 2 winners: Debbie Redgers (2), Heidelberg's Bill Wilson (1), and Avanti's Peter Funnell (3). Heat 3 winners: Fujifilm's Jay Lalonde (2), Fujifilm's Maria Arias (1), and Muller Martini's Tom Long (3). Heat 4 winners: Pressdown's Jackie Kisiloski (2), Muller Martini's Bruce Morrison (1), and Heidelberg's Steve Klaric (3).

PrintAction dispatched columnist Zac Bolan to Birmingham, UK to witness the latest technologies being announced and released this year. Below are photos from his travels. Check back each day, as we will be continually updating this page with fresh photos and look for complete coverage in the next issue of PrintAction.

DAY 0: Photos 1-6 Pre-show press conferences

DAY 1: Photos 7-24 Trade Show Opening Day

DAY 2: Photos 25-32

DAY 3: Photos 33-40




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