Christiansen Print goes digital

The Thimm Group is a leading solutions provider of corrugated packaging for transportation, high-quality promotional displays, packaging systems combining a range of materials and print products for further industrial processing. The company’s product offerings are further enhanced by a wide range of associated packaging services covering the entire supply chain. Its customers include prestigious branded product groups from across all sectors. Founded in 1949, the family-owned business currently has more than 3,000 employees at 20 sites in Germany, Czech Republic, Romania, Poland and Mexico and generates annual revenues of around €560 million. Christiansen Print is a division of the Thimm Group and a European market leader in the web press sector for corrugated packaging and displays.

Market first
The Christiansen Print division officially launched the first digital HP PageWide T1100S Web Press in Germany with an unveiling ceremony at its Ilsenburg site. The company’s investment in the digital pre-print press will enhance its existing wealth of printing expertise and open up a whole range of new opportunities for printing packaging and point-of-sale displays for customers from the corrugated and branded goods sectors.

In the packaging industry as in other sectors, there are certain trends for which there is an increasing demand: short print runs in a wide variety of formats, customised and personalised addressing of customers, strong consumer loyalty to the brand, agile processes and extremely fast response and delivery times. With its investment of around €15 million in the digital press, the Thimm Group is setting new standards in order to actively shape these developments. “The HP PageWide T1100S Web Press is the first of its kind in Germany and also features a special configuration. This puts the Thimm Group in a strong position as one of the frontrunners in the European digital pre-print market for corrugated packaging and displays,” explains Michael Smetana, Head of Marketing HP Graphics EMEA Region.

“The innovative Multi-lane Print Architecture (MLPA) gives us access to a whole new range of applications. The paper rolls can be split into individual lanes. This allows different print jobs to be produced in parallel in a wide variety of formats and batch sizes, giving us a high degree of flexibility, efficiency and cost-effectiveness,” explain Henrik Jensen and Rainer Wilke, Managing Directors of Christiansen Print.

HP PageWide T1100S press at Christiansen Print

Unveiling at the Ilsenburg site: The first digital HP PageWide T1100S Web Press in Germany. Copyright: Thimm

The Thimm Group bundles pre-print for packaging and displays in this division. The system has an operating width of 2.8m and reaches speeds of up to 30,600sqm per hr. It uses aqueous pigmented CMYK inks, which are the most suitable for fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG).

“With a native resolution of 1,200 nozzles per inch, we can achieve outstanding quality, to the same standards as offset printing. A wide range of papers can be used, from recycled products to coated fresh fibre papers, with a thickness of 80 to 400gsm. The system has some very special features, including an automated unwinder and rewinder, in-line moisturiser and in-line coating system,” explain Jensen.

Particularly for customers in the stationery trade and mail-order retail, there are considerable benefits. Shorter lead times for orders and variable job processing lead to a faster workflow overall and rapid delivery response. Each packaging item can be given a unique identity, for example in the form of customised advertising on mail-order packages, personalised addressing of customers or limited editions. This positively impacts on consumers’ brand loyalty. Processes that are familiar from label printing can therefore now be used for corrugated packaging. Specific codes and security features can be added to increase product and brand security. Long runs of up to 50,000sqm and extremely short runs can both be realised cost-effectively. This is ideal for displays and retail décor that is updated on a daily basis, or seasonal sales promotions.

Together with cutting-edge belt and central cylinder flexographic presses, Christiansen Print is now offering three print technologies that perfectly complement each other, with a total production capacity of around 450 million sqm.

Mathias Schliep, Chief Executive Officer of the Thimm Group, sums up the importance of the investment, saying, “By adding the digital HP PageWide T1100S Web Press to our technology mix, we can now offer our customers all the print technologies that are in demand on the market for packaging and displays. We can therefore provide our customers with even more customised and agile support for marketing their products. Together we are paving the way for the digital future of the pre-print and packaging market and taking an important step forward in the digital development of our company.”

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