Increasing productivity and flexibility with high-speed Digital Inkjet

EDIACA Increasing productivity and flexibility with high-speed Digital Inkjet

Company Name: ÉDIACA
Industry: Defence
Founded: 2000
Location: Saint-Étienne, France
Services: In-house printing facility
Relationship: with Canon: since 2013

Streamline production by replacing two 74-inch offset presses and a monochrome digital press with a single high-performance colour inkjet press.

• Perform a successful transition to a 100% digital printing workflow
• Combine the output of two legacy offset presses and several digital units into one digital press
• Successfully manage a major transformation of the facility’s production infrastructure

ÉDIACA invested in a Canon ProStream 1000 webfed colour inkjet press with several finishing lines to manage each of their workflows.

• Increased production capacity
• Offset print quality
• A large selection of accepted paper types, including coated stocks
• Reduced production and maintenance costs
• Shorter turnaround times

Serving the French Army personnel

The consolidation of several entities of the French defence ministry, ÉDIACA – Établissement de diffusion, d’impression et d’archive du commissariat des Armées – manages the pensions of active and retired personnel as well as the archives and print and publishing activities of the French armed forces. “We are an organisation of 122 employees, 33 of whom work in the print and publishing section”, says Bruno Danière, manager of the print and publishing department. Beyond salary slips, ÉDIACA also produces stationery items (planners, calendars, notebooks, etc), flyers, brochures, and posters, as well as technical documentation, manuals, registers and other regulatory documents. Every year, ÉDIACA prints the equivalent of 22 million A4 pages.

Canon put together a training plan and maintenance programme of a size and scope that matched our requirements. Canon’s support was instrumental in the success of our change management programme. Even today, we celebrate the quality of their support on a daily basis.”

Moving to a full digital print operation

ÉDIACA has been very familiar with digital printing for some time. Historically equipped with two 4-colour, 74-inch offset presses, the facility invested in digital printing as early as 2010 with the acquisition of an Océ VarioStream 7000 web-fed monochrome digital unit to produce salary slips as well as a monochrome Océ VarioPrint 6160 system. In 2017, EDIACA extended its digital line-up with a Canon imagePRESS C10000 and an imagePRESS C650 colour system. In 2022, ÉDIACA merged with a larger print organisation within the French armed forces. As a result, and taking ÉDIACA’s investment strategy into account, all long-run jobs are now dispatched to an offset facility in Tulle, France. This allows ÉDIACA to focus on a fully integrated digital printing environment.
“Our offset presses were reaching the end of their lifecycle and digital appeared to be the best option to move ahead without overlapping with our partner facility’s capacities”, explains Cédric Peyrard, chief of ÉDIACA’s office publishing bureau. “This is why we started researching an investment in a digital press that could replace our two offset presses and our VarioStream 7000 while offering a print quality on par with offset”. A call for tender was issued, the outcome of which was the selection of a roll-fed 558 mm wide Canon ProStream 1000 that was installed in the print room in June 2022. The support provided by the vendor was also a major element in securing the deal.

Out of the four vendors who responded, Canon was the only one that met all our requirements” “Linked with the PRISMAproduction Workflow Manager tool, the ProStream is a robust, fast, productive solution, offering an offset-level print quality and accepting a large variety of paper types.”

Sheet-fed or web-fed?

“We considered two investment scenarios: one with a sheet-fed press, the other with a web-fed press”, explains Bruno Danière. “We print posters in B2 format and sheetfed digital systems are currently limited to the A3 format. With a roll-fed system, print width is the only limit, which means we can print B2 documents if we position them lengthwise.” There were further benefits of the ProStream 1000 that helped Canon make the cut. “At 80 metres per minute, the ProStream’s productivity is excellent and it offers a high level of flexibility. On a magazine job that requires several paper rolls, we can organise the page sequence in a way that lets us start the finishing process as soon as the first roll is printed. With our offset workflow, we had to wait for the full job to be printed before moving to finishing. Today, we can have the first finished products in less than a day.”

We quickly turned our organisation around and within a few months, all required transformations were completed and our operators were up to speed with our new processes. Today, they appreciate the comfort that comes with the ProStream 1000 workflow.”

Generating new business

Cédric Peyrard also emphasises how much more comfortable a fully digital production line-up makes the shop floor operators’ work: “Our press operators now work in a healthier environment. They no longer need to use chemicals to clean the inking system of an offset press. Also, the maintenance process is a lot easier. Digital really brought us into a new world.” Today, the ProStream 1000 is handling a large part of ÉDIACA’s print production, but is still well below its full capacity. This is why ÉDIACA implemented an ambitious business development plan that also reintegrates outsourced jobs. “We wish to make our new capabilities known to other army departments and partners, to bring in more jobs and reduce outsourcing”, concludes Bruno Danière. “Our mid-term goal is to produce the equivalent of 40 million A4 pages per year. Our communication campaign has already started and things are looking pretty good so far.”

Moving from sheet to web

For an offset printing facility used to sheet-fed systems, switching to web-fed production might have been daunting. At ÉDIACA, however, the switch was conducted without any major issue. “The step that required the most attention was the change in our paper procurement process, especially considering that this happened at the peak of the paper crisis”, remembers Cédric Peyrard.

Related Products and Solutions

Explore Further

Learn more and get in touch with our experts