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  • 11 May 2021

Sigma Middle East invests across press, finishing and platemaking

Sigma Middle East Label Industries has purchased a Bobst M5 press along with finishing and pre-press equipment to increase production capacity

Self-adhesive label converter Sigma Middle East Label Industries has purchased a Bobst M5 press along with finishing and pre-press equipment to increase production capacity.

The label converter has bought a 430mm-wide 8-color Bobst M5, a full servo press with pre-register and print tutor automation to reduce job set-up time. The press can register a job in one machine length with minimal waste.

‘Due to servo technology in the M5 the registration is precise, and operator’s work is easy.

We have increased production capacity by 25 percent due to the automation involved in Bobst M5. The quality of print is also very sharp,’ said Jagannath M Wagle, MD at Sigma Middle East.

Sigma has also purchased a Grafotronic Sr3 full servo-driven slitter and rewinder machine with inspection system and turret rewinder.

‘With the new slitter and rewinder we will be able to match the current printing capacity,’ shared Wagle.

Additionally, company has invested in the first Asahi water washable AWP2530 system in the region. This decision was made after an extensive study of Asahi’s AWP advantages as compared to conventional processing systems which rely on solvents. 

‘Asahi AWP will give Sigma and its customers the advantage of processing a plate in 40 minutes and, over and above that, become an encouragement to others in the industry to adopt environmentally friendly practices by removing chemicals from the process,’ stated Wagle. ‘Asahi water washable plates incorporate the pinning technology for clean transfer which provides a simple way to improve print quality. High printing resolution, bright pictures, and excellent press performance are a small selection of all the advantages Sigma will get by adopting it.’

In addition, Sigma has invested in Esko-Graphics’ CDI Spark 2530 for digital flexo platemaking along with Esko’s automated pre-press software.

‘Label jobs are becoming shorter. When Sigma did an internal study, it was realized that a label press prints for an average of one hour for a job which requires extensive and time-consuming efforts in pre-press tasks. One of the bottlenecks in platemaking was plate processing time due to the use of solvent. We realized when investing in an in-house plate making solution, that it had to be automated, faster and of higher quality jobs to serve our customers,’ said Wagle.  

Despite the trend towards shorter runs, Wagle believes digital printing is not yet cost-effective for the region: ‘Digital machines will increase slowly but the cost and production price of digital printing is still high due to the consumables and maintenance cost. This area should be developed to be more competitive and then future can be completely digital.’

The Asahi and Esko systems were supplied and installed by local distributor Industrial Tools and Media (iTM) FZ-LLC.

Shradha Mishra MENA deputy editor for Labels & Labeling and Gulf Print & Pack

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Shradha is MENA deputy editor for Labels & Labeling and Gulf Print & Pack. 

In her previous role, she wrote about brand marketing, advertising, and media spends for a digital trade news publication. Here, she writes about the print industry for L&L and GPP. 

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