During the 14-day fair KBA exchanged contracts with customers from 30 countries for sheetfed offset presses in every format. Heading the sales rankings were China, Russia, Germany, Poland and France. They were followed by more traditional KBA markets such as the USA, the UK, Italy and Scandinavia. But orders were also booked from the Benelux states, the Czech Republic, Brazil, South Africa, Turkey, North Africa, Southeast Asia and Australia, while a large volume of contracts, relative to their size, came from small countries like Denmark, Croatia and Lebanon. On top of that KBA received some orders for web offset presses, e.g. from Germany and France. The RotaJET 76 launched at Drupa was also a further focus of keen interest on the KBA stand, and the first contracts for this inkjet web press are expected shortly.
The total value of the orders taken in Düsseldorf was also far higher than anticipated. Given that the financing must still be clarified for a number of leasing transactions, and that post-Drupa business looks set to be brisk, KBA president and CEO Claus Bolza-Schünemann was unwilling to put a precise figure on the final total. He said: “We have signed a lot of contracts, both with existing and new customers. But it will be weeks, or even months, before customer prepayments have been received and we and other exhibitors can assess our true performance at Drupa 2012.”
In sheetfed offset, the biggest attractions on the KBA stand were the brand-new Rapida 145 – the most powerful litho press at the show, and for the biggest format – and the world makeready champion, the Rapida 106, which was exhibited as a 12-unit configuration with an output of 18,000sph in four-over-four with perfect coating and ultra-fast job changes that stunned the audience. Small-scale printers were drawn to KBA’s new, 18,000sph B2 (29in) Rapida 76 with dedicated plate-cylinder drives. But the top-selling press on the stand was the Rapida 105, which is proving so popular in China and other emerging markets. Producers of flexible packaging were particularly interested in the new Varius 80 variable-format web offset press from KBA-MePrint. KBA believes this press has enormous potential thanks to its superior cost efficiency and quality compared to comparable flexo and conventional offset presses. The same applies to the Commander CL (newspaper) and C16 (commercial) web press sections exhibited, which were acclaimed by print professionals visiting the stand.
Going by sales and the image projected, Drupa 2012 was a big success for KBA.
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