Newspaper publishers joined book printers for roadshow events organised by manroland India in Mumbai and Bengaluru.
The 30 top-level delegates in Bengaluru included representatives from Deccan Herald and Times of India, a further 15 having attended the event in Mumbai.
Vice president for digital solutions at manroland Web Systems Alwin Stadler was on hand to talk about the company's digital finishing solutions, and the benefits to book and newspaper printers. manroland has what Stadler says it the "perfect finishing solution for digital printing in the FormerLine. With a speed of 300 metres/minute and seamless change of cut-off, the system offers the biggest range and the fastest finishing capacity. Versions handle 45-150 gsm paper in web widths of 508, 762 or 1067 mm.
The challenges facing newspaper publishers are well documented, but risk obscuring the basics of reduced print circulations, and the need to tailor individual editions closely to the needs and interests of readers and advertisers.
Similarly Indian book publishers find themselves at a crossroads, with increasing numbers of titles getting published every year, yet bestsellers are few. Self-publishing is also on the rise and individual print runs are coming down steadily.
For both, cashflow is always a point of concern, with warehousing and logistics costs growing steadily.
"There is a need to look critically at existing processes critically and to challenge them. "We need to understand how we could control the wastage and reduce our inventory to improve cash flow," says manroland India managing director Sudeep Bhattacharjee.
"We need to understand how we could get the stock just in time and also address the growing need of customisation according to personal choice.
"Digital printing could address all of these and more."
Through the roadshow, manroland has been able to connect with the end users - publishers and printers - and to better understand their views.
Pictured: (top and on our homepage) Alwin Stadler talks print finishing options; (centre, from left) Alwin Stadler, Kodak's Singapore-based APR sales and marketing director Rodd Harrison, Sudeep Bhattacharjee and manroland India general manager of sales Subir Paul; (bottom) Plenty to talk about during a break in presentations