Courier Adds New Press in Response to 4-Color Textbook Demand
NORTH CHELMSFORD, Mass. -- Citing growing demand for four-color textbooks, Courier Corp. is acquiring its third Lithoman IV web press from MAN Roland in three years. Scheduled for a fall 2006 installation, the new press will be the keystone of a $21 million expansion of the company's Kendallville, Ind., facility.
One of America's leading book manufacturers and specialty publishers, Courier has been an avid investor in MAN Roland technology in recent years. Six months after its first Lithoman IV began operation, the company ordered its second Lithoman, citing a rise in textbook production opportunities. That press is set to start producing before the end of the month.
"With our first MAN Roland press performing superbly and a second one to begin operation this month, we still have further to go to meet the growing demand we foresee in the education market," says James F. Conway III, chairman and chief executive officer of Courier Corp. "This third Lithoman, identical to the first two, will enable us to capture a larger share of that market growth."
Like its earlier positioned Kendallville companions, the new press will feature a web width of 57.48 inches and a 22.75 inch cutoff. Its printing units will feed a MAN Roland PFI-3/2 2:3:3 jaw folding system. And like all new Lithoman presses, its shaftless AC drive system will promote easier web-ups and smoother, more consistent operation.
According to market projections, that productivity will be available to meet the capacity needs. "Industry analysts suggest that nationwide textbook demand is still at an early stage in a multiyear growth cycle," says Conway. "Along with that demand is a continuing shift to sophisticated four-color production for books at every grade level, as teachers reach out to students amidst the distractions of video and online media. The result is an escalating need, not just for capacity, but for the specific kinds of capacity Courier has been cultivating for the last several years."