04 August 2017 Business

Pixartprinting: Italian flair married to automated efficiency

The Italian arm of Cimpress has its own identity with a focus on design and is taking this into carton printing.

Pixartprinting is the original Italian online print company. It is now one of the key production sites in Europe for Cimpress with the largest line up of sheetfed Komori’s in Europe, a large park of HP Indigos and large format latex printers matched by Durst machines.

It employs 600 at a plant close to Venice reaching 250,000 customers from resellers, printers, design and marketing agencies and, especially in the UK, print brokers. “All know how to specify print and create a usable file,” says chief executive Paolo Roatta. This is not the place to come for business cards or photo products (others in the Cimpress group are better placed for that) but for more value add products.

Pixartprinting is for people that appreciate quality,” he says. “It is not about quick and dirty print. It is about delivering the best value print: 97% of our customers buy again.”

The company’s marketing is unashamedly flattering to these customer groups, highlighting design, typography and flair. This also drives Pixartprinting's own innovations. It continues to build expertise in fabric printing and can offer backlit frames bought online. It has expanded online labels into the third largest product range it has and has pulled together Scodix and other technology into Catalyst, what Roatta calls the most advanced packaging print line in Europe.

“Until Catalyst people simply could not buy just 25 boxes, they had to order a minimum of 500 or 1,000 units. Now this is possible. We had one customer who wanted to position a canned drink as a premium product, and used Catalyst to design a carton to test the concept, selling the drink for €4. That could not happen before.”

It has also just installed a Tecnau bookline to deliver book of one if necessary, but twice the number of books in an hour than was possible before, without increasing costs. Customers will share in the productivity improvement he continues. “And these are not just A4 books, they can be any size as we want to give freedom to the designers.”

This is possible because of an ethos which seeks to standardise the processes used to deliver products, and then to optimise these processes. “And we transfer the benefit to the customer,” he adds. “We know that our customers are operating in competitive markets, so we are getting behind resellers in offering the service and how we innovate how products are produced.”

As the range of products expands, Pixartprinting can draw in an increasing number of customers that can then be offered additional products from it range or through the Cimpress Mass Customisation Platform. “Today 80% of print is bought in the traditional way, which means that online is the Blue Ocean where there is less competition. We find that once customers have tasted online they are unlikely to go back. We are putting our technology at the service of our customers.

“We think there are decades of growth to come still.”

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Pixartprinting factory

Pixartprinting factory

Pixartprinting is now the largest user of B1 Komori presses in Europe, the latest installations including LED UV curing so that the company can print and finish work immediately and can also print on a wider range of substrates. The focus is on extending the range of product types that can be specified and ordered online, including small batches of cartons, printing on an HP Indigo 30000 and Scodix Ultra for enhancement.

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