Finishing, Bay of Plenty style: (left to right) Stephen Kale, managing director Kale Print, with Kale Print operators Dave Hillier and Barry Haskell with the new Wohlenberg-Baumann Paper Cutting and Handing System
When Kale Print realised its finishing department couldn’t keep up with its workload, CPI came to the party with the new Wohlenberg-Baumann Paper Cutting and Handing SystemKALE print has come a long way in the 23 years since it started as a privately owned commercial printing business with a staff of two, doing small jobbing work on an old Heidelberg single colour Kora. It’s discovered that, as business has grown, so have the needs of its clients and the necessity to satisfy those needs with superior technology and service.
Stephen Kale, managing director Kale Print says, “Because we are based in Tauranga, a provincial town, we need to be able to handle the jobs from concept to delivery without having to out-source anything, mainly because of time and distance constraints.” When he looks back, he considers how the company’s goals have grown as well. He says, “It is quite funny. When we first started we strived to be the best in Tauranga, then later New Zealand, and now we even print for overseas markets.”
Today Kale Print comprises a staff of 50 dedicated employees operating some of the most sophisticated large format equipment available in the world.
Kale says, “I spoke to the team at CPI and told them that we were struggling to keep up with the trimming and cutting now that we had our presses running 24 hours a day. Our existing four guillotines were not keeping up with the capacity of pre-trimming and printing we were producing. Our operators were putting in extra hours, and it is a very physically demanding job handing the heavy SRA1 sheets.”
Kale learned that Rayne Simpson, general manager print finishing at CPI Graphics Australia New Zealand, was putting together a demonstration in Melbourne. CPI would showcase its new Wohlenberg-Baumann Paper Cutting and Handing Line. An All Blacks vs Wallabies test match became the sweetener that Kale needed to cross the Tasman.
Listening to Kale describing the machine, it’s obvious he got more from the CPI demonstration as he did from the test match, which didn’t go the way of the men in black. He says, “The demonstration at CPI blew me away. This system can cut up to 22,000 SRA1 sheets an hour and automatically stack trimmed sheets back onto a pallet with the unloading kit with only one operator.”
The decision to purchase came easily for Kale who says, “We were only averaging about 3000 sheets on our existing equipment. It was a no-brainer; I knew we had to have one. I could see both the cost efficiencies and less strain on our staff member’s backs.
“The machine also has automatic waste disposal that unloads straight into the rubbish skips for recycling, eliminating the need to lug waste paper cages around. The construction of the machine is very solid and well engineered which is important as it handles heavy weights and volume of paper.”
In more difficult economic times, and when looking at a global picture, companies like Kale Print see value in investing in new technology and equipment. Kale adds, “I think systems like this one are a must in tough markets. We must get the most out of our of staff members by giving them access to modern technology to up our volume so we can compete with countries that have lower labour rates. We are very much in a global market now and need to create every advantage we can.
“Everyone is very happy with the system especially the folder operators as the trimming and knocking up is extremely accurate which makes their job a lot easier, and that’s what it is all about: making the next guys job easier. They don’t have to chase register.
“We enjoy working with CPI as they have helped us grow over the years and understand where we want to be in the next 10 years. We have formed a very strong relationship as a lot of the same team are still there since we started 23 years ago.”
Kale takes a realistic approach to what lies ahead when he says, “I think the big challenge in our competitive industry is to know what our real costs are. And purchasing the latest technology and best equipment puts us in a position where we don’t need to get tied up in the current cost cutting war. There is no point cutting costs and persevering with ineffective plant if you can’t operate efficiently to grow your business. No one in the industry wins and it is hard for anyone to move forward.”
He concludes, “I get great satisfaction from having the top gear for our highly qualified team to produce quality work on time. There are no excuses not to.”