Brisk sheetfed business and some web press sales

KBA at Drupa: a fine half-time score

(PresseBox) ( Würzburg, )
For Koenig & Bauer AG (KBA), the Drupa balance to date is a cause for celebration. While attendance figures have been roughly on a par with 2004, the proportion of trade professionals and decision-makers visiting the KBA stand in hall 16 has been substantially higher. As a result, business has been brisk: the volume of new orders for sheetfed presses, particularly for medium and large formats, has easily surpassed the half-time score at Drupa 2004.

Contracts for a number of commercial web presses have also been signed by printers from Brazil, Colombia and Venezuela. KBA's new compact platform, comprising the Cortina and Commander CT newspaper presses, has also proved a big attraction. With a string of new projects initiated in the first few days of the show, KBA anticipates further contracts for sheetfed, commercial and newspaper presses in coming weeks and months.

After largely shelving investment in sheetfed presses in recent months, printers from the USA and Canada are once again unbuttoning their wallets. Here the bonus depreciation programme launched by the US government and due to expire at the end of the year is having a positive impact, helping to offset the weak dollar and the knock-on effects of the financial crisis. But topping the current statistics on new orders are print providers from the Middle East, eastern Europe and China. Orders have also come in from Latin America, Switzerland, France, Scandinavia, Italy and other countries in western Europe. German printers have shown a preference for KBA's new medium-format Rapida 106 and some large-format presses. All the presses exhibited at the show have now been sold and will be shipped to France, Germany, Denmark and Spain.

Alongside live demonstrations at Drupa, KBA has been organising trips to users in the near and not so near vicinity - Grieger Offsetdruck in Nettetal (medium- and large-format packaging printing), Kürten & Lechner in Bergisch Gladbach (VLF outdoor advertising and POS) and Eco Print Center in Lokeren, Belgium (multi-unit KBA Cortina for waterless coldset and heatset) - and these have proved extremely popular, particularly among visitors from overseas.

KBA is confident that in the second half of the show contracts will be sealed with printers from Germany and other countries in Europe. At present no concrete sales figures are being issued because once contracts have been signed the funding must be clarified before orders can be finalised. A final Drupa reckoning will not be possible until a few weeks or even months after the show, since post-Drupa business historically plays a significant role.
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