Walstead Group expands PoS printing capacity with Jeti Tauro large-format inkjet printer

In the Spring of 2019, the Polish Walstead Group installed its second large-format printer from Agfa, a Jeti Tauro H2500 LED. The company’s Krakow-based plant is systematically expanding its production capacity to produce a wider range of point-of-sales materials for clients in the retail market. the Jeti Tauro not only enabled them to produce more prints, yet also to do so on more varied substrates.

“We invest in a new printer to extend our production capacity for customers in the retail market,” says Łukasz Kolan, director of Retail Solutions at Walstead Central Europe. “The task of the Retail Solutions department is to support retail chains, distributors and brand owners in their marketing communication and to handle comprehensive orders for them. On the one hand, this entails the production of catalogs, brochures and trade leaflets printed in heatset offset. On the other hand, this department produces so-called in-store marketing products, covering a wide variety of POS solutions: stands, signs, displays, pallet wrappers, wobblers, etc. Our clients have been asking for them for a long time, which is why we bought a first hybrid printing engine in 2016, an Anapurna M2500i from Agfa.” This printer allowed Walstead to enter a completely new market segment and print on substrates it couldn’t handle before. The first orders appeared almost immediately, and they primarily came from existing Walstead customers.

European player

The Polish Walstead Group, formerly owned by LSC Communications, was acquired in September 2018 as part of a strategic investment by the English Walstead group – one of the leading suppliers of printing services in Europe. The group with an income of approximately EUR 700 million employs a total of 3,700 employees in 15 production plants located in the United Kingdom, Spain, Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovenia and Poland.

Currently, the company employs a total of over 1,600 people in Poland. Most of them work in three printing plants, located in Krakow, Starachowice, and Warsaw, offering digital print services. The Polish branch of Walstead serves clients from over 30 countries, and a growing group of them uses the growing digital printing department.

Extending production capacity

“Responding to the growing needs of our clients, we decided to invest in a more advanced solution in 2018, enabling the production of high-end POS materials, of course taking into account our standards,” says Łukasz Kolan. After analyzing all options on the market, the management of Walstead again decided to invest in an Agfa printer. This time, the printing house purchased a Jeti Tauro H2500 LED – using energy-saving UV LED technology just like all inkjet engines of the Belgian manufacturer. The engine can print flexible media with a maximum width of 2.5 m, and up to four boards in parallel with a thickness of up to 5 cm.

“This purchase means for us the next stage in our development, both in terms of technology, as well as in terms of efficiency”

Łukasz Kolan, Director of Retail Solutions at Walstead Central Europe

“This purchase means for us the next stage in our development, both in terms of technology, as well as in terms of efficiency,” says Łukasz Kolan. “We feel we have chosen the optimal solution, perfectly tuned to the production of our Retail Solutions department. We are working on several large promotional campaigns for our clients and I can confirm that the engine is doing very well.”

Agfa Jeti Tauro large-format printer

The rapid installation of the new printer encouraged the management of the Polish branch of the Walstead company to extend their in-store marketing offering. “With the purchase of the Jeti Tauro H2500 LED, our capacity in the field of large-format digital printing has increased several times. Taking into account the capabilities of the machine, we also want to use it for unusual substrates and for new customers. We hope that our further fruitful partnership with Agfa will translate into local and international success,” adds Wacław Kruba, Marketing and Business Development Manager at Walstead Central Europe.

Long-term cooperation

Łukasz Kolan emphasizes that one of the key parameters when choosing a new printer was the long-standing, positive cooperation between the Krakow printing house and Agfa: “Our prepress department had been using Agfa solutions to its satisfaction for many years, both hardware and consumables,” he says. “We had a similar experience after the implementation of the Anapurna printer as we did this time. Agfa was very helpful in introducing substrates that were new to us, as well as in testing them. We are also pleased with the response time of their service department and with their support.”

Grzegorz Czech, president of Walstead Central Europe, says: “We want to continue to grow in accordance with our customers’ needs, combining our 25 years of experience in the market with the latest technologies available in the industry. We see such development potential in the in-store marketing segment in which we want to play an increasingly important role.”

Adriana Piotrowska-Ineksiak of Agfa adds: “We are pleased that a company that is so important, both for the Polish and the European printing industry, once again trusted the Agfa brand and decided to purchase a Jeti Tauro H2500 LED. We hope that the potential of this hybrid printer will translate into success for Walstead on the fast developing market of large-format digital printing, in particular for POS applications.”

“With the purchase of the Jeti Tauro H2500 LED, our capacity in the field of large-format digital printing has increased several times.”

“Agfa was very helpful in introducing substrates that were new to us, as well as in testing them. We are also pleased with the response time of their service department and with their support.”

 Łukasz Kolan, Director of Retail Solutions at Walstead Central Europe

Ecology is key

The choice for the Jeti Tauro H2500 LED was also related to Walstead’s strategy for sustainable development, emphasizes Łukasz Szul, deputy director of business development at Walstead Central Europe: “In our company we care for environmental aspects. Our clients are also increasingly paying attention to this issue. They feel it is important that their orders are handled with environment-friendly printing solutions. The Jeti Tauro H2500 with LED lamps is more energy-efficient than conventional inkjet engines.”

Adriana Piotrowska-Ineksiak, regional sales manager Agfa Poland completes: “The key lies in the replacement of mercury lamps with UV LED lamps. This significantly reduces the amount of energy needed to operate the device, while it also eliminates the time it takes to warm up and cool down. Most importantly, it significantly facilitates the printing of heat-sensitive media, such as cardboard.”

Asanti workflow prepress operator

Walstead made their own movie of the Jeti Tauro H2500 LED installation. Have a look.