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‘Critical’ Horizon SPF-200A supports continuous improvement ethos at LG Davis

LG Davis has reinforced its commitment to its drive towards a leaner and more efficient production workflow with a Horizon SPF-200A highly automated bookletmaker and a VAC-1000 tower collator from IFS.

Matt Watkiss, Operations Director at the Birmingham based commercial printer, that has been supplying both public and private sector clients for over 55 years, explains: “We are a manufacturing printer striving to produce our customer’s products in the most efficient and cost-effective way, so the right machinery is critical for us. Our existing booklet maker was constantly letting us down and this, compounded by poor support and service from the manufacturer, encouraged us to look for a better solution.”

Matt, who reviewed options including those from Watkiss, Plockmatic and the complete Horizon range, old and new, says: “We contacted IFS for options and they quickly did the due diligence required to give us solutions to consider.  The SPF-200A ticked all the boxes when it came to the booklet making solution we needed. We wanted a system that was proven to be reliable and fast which the Horizon kit was. We also liked its ease of use and its build quality.  We manufacture using multiple print technologies – litho, digital and inkjet – so it had to be able to handle all of these. We also wanted a company that would give us a long-term support partnership.”

The highly automated Horizon 4,500bph JDF-ready SPF/FC-200A offers instant set-ups via a large icon-based colour touchscreen for user-friendly operation. The screen can be used for on-the-run fine tune adjustments as well as the store and recall of up to 200 jobs.

It has already made a clear positive impact. “Our efficiency has rocketed which is great. For example, we did a job the other day that would have normally taken one and a half to two days to finish through our previous system. The Horizon completed it in four hours.

 “We have seen staff morale improve too; our operators have a machine they can rely on; the Production Manager has a machine he can confidently schedule for and the sales team are not being let down by poor performing equipment. It’s a companywide win, win.”

 “The machine is still being monitored but, if it continues the way it is going, it should pay for itself in the first two to three years. I also have faith that this machine will hold its re-sale value – the build and support is really good.”

For Matt the relationship with IFS was vital. He states: “I can’t fault them, from day one they listened to our needs and then provided us a with a suitable solution. They provided demos, took us to Germany to see the set up and answered every question we raised.”

 “Because of the nature of our business we are looking for strategic, long lasting partnerships – not just a purchase. One of the reasons we brought this machine was because of the IFS support network and ethos. We feel confident that we will be dealing with IFS for a long time to come.”