WATCH: Bristol Labels establishes digital label service with Epson SurePress L-4033AW press investment

Bristol Labels has invested in an Epson Surepress L-4033AW inkjet label press with an Esko Digital Front-End and a Grafisk DC330 finishing system to offer its customers a dynamic digital label printing service and boost its production capacity by 20 per cent.

Over the past 12 years, Paul Stokes, managing director of Bristol Labels, has grown Bristol Labels into a £1m turnover operation with the help of his eight-strong team. The company specialises in producing labels primarily for breweries, ice cream firms, chemical products and cosmetic manufacturers.

The new Epson 7-colour SurePress L-4033AW (see below for video) was installed in June. It uses the Epson AQ aqueous ink-set, including opaque white, orange and green, to produce high-quality, wide colour-gamut labels on a wide range of materials, including clear and metallic substrates.

Stokes chose the SurePress after evaluating most of the digital presses on the market: “Speed wasn’t an issue,” he says. “I wanted the best quality; water-based inks and the ability to use the same standard substrates that I use on the Nilpeter press and the SurePress was the best solution.”

The new press joins an existing eight-colour Nilpeter FA 200 analogue press and will open up significant new opportunities for Bristol Labels.

“The business of label printing is changing and this investment ensures we keep ahead of the game,” he continues. “While 10 to 20,000 label orders used to be the norm, now three to five thousand label volumes, ordered more frequently, is pretty standard. We can get jobs onto the inkjet SurePress in less than half the time it takes to prepare jobs for the analogue press, so it gives us considerable flexibility, in addition to the ability to produce customised label batches and individually personalised labels very easily.

“Immediately we can bring in-house the short-run jobs we have previously contracted out, and that alone will have a direct impact on our bottom line.”

Bristol Labels has recently employed two new sales people to drive the next stage of the company’s growth, and a new design service will help customers with product branding, packaging and label design, or a complete product launch campaign encompassing labels, packaging and marketing materials.

A demonstration of Epson’s SurePress L-4033AW at Drupa 2012