Almost a year after announcing that it will manufacture CI flexo presses at its Kohlapur plant in India, Manugraph finally launched its first India-made CI flexo press at the IndiaPlast 2019 exhibition. Running at speeds up to 350 meter per minute, the 8-color Manuflex 1308-350 CI flexo press piqued huge interest and excitement among visitors at the exhibition.
To manufacture CI flexo presses in India, Manugraph has entered into a strategic alliance with Italy-based CI flexo press manufacturer Carraro. The core of the collaboration is technology transfer by Carraro to build high-quality CI flexo presses in India. Under the collaboration, Manugraph gets the drawings, know-hows and training from Carraro. A pioneer in making flexo presses, Carraro has been in the CI flexo business since the early 1950s. In fact, it was the first Italian manufacturer of flexographic printing technology.
Established in 1972, Manugraph India is well known for its web offset newspaper and book printing presses. The company has driven the growth of quality newspaper printing in India through technological advancements, collaborating with the very best globally, and continuously innovating and delivering cutting-edge printing solutions to customers worldwide. Manuflex CI flexo press is manufactured at Manugraph’s sprawling state-of-the art facility in Kolhapur, which is spread over 1,38,000 square meter. The factory follows a strict quality management system in accordance with ISO 9001:2008 standards. The scope of the quality management system covers design, development, manufacturing, installation, commissioning and servicing.
Pradeep Shah, managing director, Manugraph India, said, “We are planning to roll out 4 to 5 CI flexo presses by March 2020. We already have orders for two presses.” Shah shared that the company has a dedicated team of Indian engineers fully trained at the Carraro’s Italy factory in building mechanical units, electrical operations, and servicing and maintenance of the press. “This will give Indian customers the added advantage of prompt and timely local service support,” he added.
“The Indian CI flexo market, which is predominantly ruled by European machines, will now have the advantage of buying an India-made machine of European standard. If you see the print quality of Manuflex, it is at par with any European machines. In addition, customers now can save on valuable foreign exchange and import costs as they can now own a highly configured European standard CI flexo press right in India,” said Shah.
The Manuflex CI flexo presses will be marketed by Multigraph Machinery, which is the agency for Manugraph. Speaking about the Indian market, Hiten Mehta, president, Multigraph Machinery, said, “The Indian market has gone from 5 to 6 CI flexo presses a year to 20 to 25 presses. India and Asia have predominantly been a roto-gravure market. But slowly and steadily people are understanding that there are certain items which are supposed to be printed on CI flexo only. So the flexo jobs that were earlier printed on roto-gravure presses will now go back to where they actually belonged to. This, in turn, is going to increase the demand for quality CI flexo machines. With Manuflex now being manufactured in India, customers from the Indian sub-continent will be assured of world-class quality and service.”
Mehta cautioned that European CI flexo press manufactures may have to cut their rates by 20 to 24% to stay in competition in India. “This is a fantastic news for Indian converters as they are the ones who will most benefit. I am sure Manuflex will be a game changer for the converting industry in India,” concluded Mehta.