3D printing brings cosmetics companies to the 21st century

With 3D printing, companies can convert digital prototypes of their products into physical objects at a breath-taking pace. In doing so, they arrive much faster at the right design and shorten their time-to-market. This provides great benefits for prototyping cosmetics packaging. However, previous 3D technology had a major limitation in terms of colour. Now this is a thing of the past with the arrival of Mimaki’s full-colour 3D printer.

Bert Benckhuysen, Senior Product Manager at Mimaki EMEA

The cosmetics industry is extremely creative. This is evident in all the beautiful packaging of, for example, perfume bottles, tubes and cream jars. Historically, a model maker was always engaged for prototyping these products. They were shown the digital design and then started working with manual techniques, including glass-blowing, moulding and screen printing, to meticulously recreate the design. This cost a great deal of time and money. Moreover, nine out of ten designs were rejected, which meant that the model maker then had to begin the next design immediately, incurring even more time and cost. Over the past few years, 3D printing has increasingly been used in the cosmetics industry, taking over a large part of the model building work, at least for early production models. The most important limitation that prevented this from a more rapid adoption is that previously, these 3D-printed objects could only be printed in white or colourless. It required a lot of imagination to really assess a 3D prototype, or a drawing of it had to be done by hand. This changed drastically with the emergence of full-colour 3D printers, and in particular, with the Mimaki 3DUJ-553.

Transparent ink

When Mimaki brought its first 3D printer to the market, it was a hit almost immediately. It finally made it possible to print with up to 10 million different colours, but also with transparent ink. A digital design of, for example, a perfume bottle, complete with printing and packaging, could now be faithfully reproduced with the 3D printer without any human effort. This was literally a revolution for prototyping in the cosmetics industry. Now it is possible to print complete photo-realistic prototypes for all kinds of products, from perfume bottles, tubes and jars to labels and packaging materials. Although they are not functional, but only suitable for marketing purposes, and to determine whether certain packaging is right for a specific product, it is ideal to take both time and cost out of the process, ensuring faster design cycles and a time to market that delivers a significant competitive advantage.
Since that time, more and more people are beginning to understand the wide range of applications for this type of rapid prototyping. For example, requests from the market can also be made to print such specific things as transparent black. In doing so, you can simulate a bottle with dark glass, which is common in perfume bottles and other cosmetics packaging. But in principle, all sorts of colours are possible by using what we call “skeleton mode.” In this mode, the 3D printer combines the transparent ink with a specific colour tone, so you can also simulate pink or green transparent bottles – or any other colour that is desired.

Faster time-to-market

Another major advantage of Mimaki 3D printing technology is that the digital models can be sent directly to the printer without any complicated adjustments. This is ideal, because the designer can manufacture prototypes completely independently without the intervention of a model builder or technical expert. That not only saves time but also eliminates the need for additional software or human expertise.
We can honestly say that full-colour 3D printing with transparency is a real breakthrough in a highly competitive market such as the cosmetics industry. There is no better way to quickly manufacture photo-realistic prototypes. The time-to-market for new products is significantly speeded up because the design phase is much less labour-intensive and produces products that you can physically view and touch. As a result, cosmetics manufacturers can bring new products to the market much more frequently and faster. This is a win-win situation, both for the cosmetics manufacturers and the enthusiastic buyers of their products.

Mimaki brings over 10 million colours to formnext

Mimaki raises the bar in product design prototyping with best in class fine detail and colour

Under the theme ‘Shape the Future in Colour’, Mimaki will showcase its advanced colour additive manufacturing technology at formnext from the 13-16th November in Frankfurt. Running live on booth D26 in hall 3.1, the Mimaki 3DUJ-553 3D printer allows bureaux, designers and product developers to reach unparalleled levels of photorealism due to its fine detail and extensive colour capability.

“The colour range and vibrancy combined with the ability to match colours with such accuracy opens up some very exciting application possibilities,” states Bert Benckhuysen, Senior Product Manager at Mimaki. “For instance, skin tones – where the slightest variations can easily be detected by the human eye – are reproduced with photorealistic quality as Mimaki meets the accuracy of scanning equipment with absolute precision. Product developers striving for accurate representations of their designs get extraordinarily smooth colour gradations, minimising granularity, and special spot colours can be created for brands with exacting requirements.”

The 3DUJ-553 3D printer prints in over 10 million colours and the results are consistent and repeatable thanks to Mimaki’s unique use of ICC colour profiling. Mimaki has also developed a clear resin so full transparency and semi-transparent colour can be realised. Printing in 19, 32 or 42µm layers, the 3DUJ-553 3D printer delivers super fine detail and smooth surfaces, which are preserved during post-processing as the support material is water-soluble and simply dissolves in water.

Through a collaborative project with Materialise, Mimaki 3D printed models are currently available via i.materialise.com under the name Multicolor+. Miranda Bastijns, Materialise Director Manufacturing Online, comments, “Materialise is currently trialling Mimaki’s full-colour 3D printing technology. The material, Multicolor+, allows us to create smooth surfaces with vibrant colours that enhance the value of a finished object. Multicolor+ offers more vivid and intense colours and enables stronger, sturdier materials with a minimum wall thickness of 1mm. It also allows for printing interlocking parts. As a result, Multicolor+ is ideal for printing decorative parts such as figurines, avatars and architectural models.”

Mimaki 3D printed models have a strength comparable to ABS plastic. Printed in UV-cured photopolymer resins with inkjet printing heads, models can be handled direct from the print build tray, which is a large 500x500x300mm. The 3DUJ-553 3D printer is easy to operate either remotely or through a touch panel. Mimaki 3D Link software also allows colours to be changed on-the-fly.

Mimaki’s expertise in inkjet, UV and colour management derive from the company’s heritage in 2D printing according to Benckhuysen: “Our history in 2D printing is fundamental because it’s given us proficiency in colour management, ink circulation for maximum uptime of the printer and operability. We also understand the importance of continued investment in R&D; not only that, but it means we have excellent technical support and customer service already in place, even as we look to expand our sales infrastructure.”

Benckhuysen concludes, “It’s said colour speaks all languages, so our incredible range of print samples – encompassing industries from toys, entertainment, tools, medical, consumer products, signage, architectural, art and packaging – will speak for themselves. Following our successful launch last year, we’re delighted to meet with the formnext community again and show them the technology, the colour and all developments we’ve made over the last year.”

Unfold focuses on smart production with wide Mimaki printer

Haarlem-based Unfold works from a large industrial building, located in a large commercial zoning area. A common assumption for most production companies. What’s not so common, is that Unfold houses a huge range of heavy production printers, yet very few people to operate them. Owner of the company, René Spanger, does most of it all by himself. Just recently, he upped his own game and invested in a 3,20-meter-wide Mimaki printer with UV-curing. The UJV55-320 is a big whopper – crucial to be able to deal with the print demand at Unfold.

From the home

Spanger started out as an events’ organiser 15 years ago. As he developed flyers and posters for events, people automatically asked for the next step. Spanger is a design autodidact. All thanks to Google, according to him: “Before you know it, you’re a trader in print material. I got so many print requests that I actually bought my first home plotter. I put it in a 15sqm room in my home. After that, things got out of hand,” he adds jokingly, “and my machine portfolio grew exponentially.”

To more space

By adding printers, Spanger needed more room and went from 150 to 800 to 1250 sqm. More room, not more people though. René Spanger and his emergency crew, that’s it. Order intake, order preparations, prepress, printing, finishing, packing and shipping – most companies have one person per division. Unfold doesn’t, it relies on its automation installation to do the work for them. Spanger no longer designs – he focuses entirely on production.

Automation

André Geuke who works for supplier Igepa calls Unfold an a-typical company. “René took huge strides forward when it comes to automation. He put in a lot of time in setting up a functional system that enables five printers to be operated by just the one person.” Nonetheless, Spanger is checking with different people for additional support, when required.

Print service

Geuke: “It’s astonishing, how the company only offers print service (printing, plotting and milling). Unfold works for third parties like graphic and sign companies that outsource the print jobs to this specialised print machine.” Companies with an online sales focus also often turn to Unfold for production. The company does not advertise, and its website is a contact page. Work comes in via resellers providing print-ready PDFs.

Combinations

The Esko software schedules jobs the smart way and completely books the machines. The four Mimaki printers are running non-stop. “Just look at the incoming orders of plates in different sizes. I put these in the Forex folder and the software sorts the plate-orders to make sure the machine is fully booked. It sends the prints to the printers and the plotting files to the plotters.” Spanger says.
The company has different job sections. Orders arrive at order processing where Spanger accepts the orders and processes them into the company workflow. At the Mimaki printers, he then picks up the orders, puts in the material, launches the order to print and cuts the output. Onto the plotter, where he scans the order and lets the plotter handle it. He then rolls it, tubes it, labels it and sends it off for shipping. The shipping company picks up the shipments from the shelf and takes it along. Igepa makes a daily delivery of substrates to make sure that each day’s order book can be processed entirely.

Long-term relationship

The relationship with Mimaki goes way back. It started with the first plotter Unfold purchased. Fifteen years ago, it was one of the first machines that could print and plot at the same time. “I asked my foil supplier a reference for a printer. It became the Mimaki on the second go. After that, it just kept on feeling right.” Spanger adds. “I am pleased with the Mimaki printers and it remained our go-to brand as our capacity grew. We still have our first machine up and running even.”

Growth

The new Mimaki UJV55-320 was supplied by Igepa and extends the print width capacity. The machine replaces a smaller 2,6m printer. Mimaki has been supplying a 3,2m printer just recently, but at Unfold it’s been running for a few months. Much to everyone’s delight from the very start. “The printer arrived just in time to comply with the increasing print demand. In Harlem we are now the frontrunner in this area. But I spot potential to push our growth even further“, René Spanger concludes.

Mimaki to showcase its Internet of Things for UV print at Fakuma

Integrated workflow solutions for UV-LED printing on plastic are at the heart of Mimaki’s IoT strategy and its model for the future

Mimaki will be showcasing creative solutions for printing on plastic at this year’s Fakuma, the international trade show for plastics processing. Mimaki will be exhibiting in Hall A1, Stand 1410. Its focus at the show, which takes place from 16 to 20 October in Friedrichshafen, Germany, will be on integrated workflow solutions for UV-LED printing. These include the compact, state-of-the art UV-LED direct printing system UJF-7151plus; the UJF-3042 MkII for high-performance small-format UV-LED printing; the compact flatbed cutting machine CFL-605RT, the ideal multifunctional solution for the production of samples and short runs; and the innovative features of systems solution RasterLink 6.

The highlight of the on-site demonstrations will be an automated workflow solution for the UJF-7151plus, developed jointly by Mimaki and German company Robominds GmbH. Using a robotic arm, the printer is loaded and unloaded automatically via an interface solution. This reduces machine make-ready times and will further increase efficiency levels of Mimaki’s systems.

“As a trendsetting and customer-oriented company, Mimaki is pursuing an IoT strategy that creates a model for the future of integrated workflow solutions for the plastics industry, among others,” explains Uwe Niklas, General Manager Marketing & Sales at Mimaki Deutschland GmbH. “By leveraging the long-standing and trusting partnerships with our customers and partners, we are showing innovative application opportunities that demonstrate the scope of our systems, in order to enable customers to cover a broad spectrum of applications with a single system.“

Digital Printing Connection – Networked printing solutions

With its IoT strategy, Mimaki aims to help its customers connect their printing systems to achieve unmanned on-demand production and mass personalisation by integrating robots, conveyor belts, testing technologies, sensors and other peripherals with production lines. The first two solutions to emerge from this new development are MDL commands and the Mimaki Job Controller.

MDL commands are used to control Mimaki printers via the customer’s production systems and peripherals. They take over control of the printer by launching production and adjusting position and height of the substrate table. In addition, they provide information about remaining ink levels and report print errors. Customers who use MDL commands are able to build a perfect system for their needs with Mimaki’s software development kit, which can be downloaded from the Mimaki Global website.

Mimaki Job Controller is a software solution that communicates with the printer in order to transmit accurate printing data and printing conditions. It can also start production automatically, creating a link along the production line between the printer and the robot in order to feed in print jobs via a conveyor belt and collect the finished printed output.

“Digital Printing Connection enables production with fewer personnel. Our customers need to simplify and streamline their processes, since printers, which were typically deployed on a standalone basis, are now connected to their peripherals. This concept promotes on-demand production and mass personalisation,” concludes Niklas.

Mimaki to Slash the Price of TS300P-1800

End-of-summer campaign will feature price reduction and last until the end of the year

Mimaki today announced a special promotion for one of its popular dye sublimation printers, the TS300P-1800. Developed specifically for the textile print industry, the revolutionary TS300P-1800 delivers cost-effective dye sublimation printing without compromising quality and productivity. The limited campaign features a significant price reduction on the machine and will run until December 31, 2018.

Interested customers can access this promotion by contacting their local Mimaki authorized resellers or through a dedicated page on the Mimaki Europe website.

“As the end of summer is approaching, we want to finish on a high note,” said Ronald van den Broek, General Manager Sales EMEA at Mimaki Europe. “A conventional-to-digital transformation is currently taking place in the textile and apparel industry. As an early mover in this space, Mimaki has always been dedicated to bringing affordable, industry-leading solutions to the segment. By introducing a lower price on the TS300P-1800, we hope to accelerate the trend and spread this conventional-to-digital revolution even further.”

About TS300P-1800

The Mimaki TS300P-1800 is a 1.8m wide roll-to-roll dedicated transfer paper printer, delivering cost effective dye sublimation printing while offering new levels of quality and productivity in digital textile printing. Perfectly suited to the creation of fashion, apparel, sportswear, furnishings and point-of-sale materials, the TS300P-1800 uses state-of-the-art technology to set new performance benchmarks for the sector. Some of the capabilities offered by the machine include:

  • Maximum print speed of 115m2/h
  • High performance, economical sublimation inks, which feature fluorescent pink and yellow inks
  • Mimaki’s core technologies to ensure reliable continuous print operation
  • Cockling reduction transfer mechanism for higher print quality

Make textile production more efficient with a one-stop solution

An analogue-to-digital transformation is currently taking place in the textiles and clothing market. Alongside conventional textile printing processes, digital printing is growing fast. Digital offers enormous potential to make production more efficient. And yet textile manufacturers cannot make use of all the opportunities, partly because the systems for the pre-treatment and post-treatment of textiles often come from different manufacturers. This is why Mimaki now offers one complete solution for the textile print workflow.

By Bert Benckhuysen, Senior Product Manager at Mimaki EMEA


It is getting increasingly challenging for big textile brands to manage their production and distribution costs. Everything has to be as efficient and as cost-effective as possible in order to be more competitive and compensate for unsold stock. H&M, for example, recently announced that it has over 4.3 billion dollars’ worth of unsold stock. Digital textile printing is seen as a more cost-efficient alternative to conventional techniques, where smaller volumes can be custom-made. This means that less stock is required, and products can be placed on the market much more quickly. In addition, within the foreseeable future, you’ll be able to adjust a collection or even completely replace it, based on online and in-store sales.

It is no coincidence that traditional textile manufacturers are currently making big investments in their transition to the digital world. According to the latest trends, thanks to this digital revolution, printed textile manufacturing is coming back to Europe, mostly from Asia, because this allows a lot of savings on distribution. Time-to-market in particular plays an important role here. Digital textile production also helps to reduce environmental pollution. The fact is that conventional technology for textile printing is one of the biggest water consumers of all industries. With regard to water pollution, this industry scores the highest, with around 20 per cent. It is estimated that digital textile printing offers savings of over 60 per cent!

Well-oiled machine

But all these advantages can only be used to their full potential if the digital textile production process works like a well-oiled machine. In order to achieve this, to start with, the machines used have to deal with high production volumes, which means that they do not need maintenance during production. The promised efficiency improvements to digital inkjet technology cannot always be fulfilled, because companies use machinery from different suppliers. These machines are not always geared to each other and are not always capable of achieving the same production volume within the same maintenance cycle. Consequently, a machine in the print queue can come to a standstill due to a failure, which means that the entire production stagnates. Next, as a textile print company you are reliant on the technical support of different suppliers in order to get production back on track. As with many things, the efficiency of digital textile production depends on the weakest link. So support for your entire workflow is crucial.

One-stop solution

Due to the recent takeover of Rimslow, Mimaki can offer a complete workflow solution for digital textile printing. This is how it looks:

  • Step 1: Pre-treatment of fabrics.

    This is carried out with a special coating, before printing, which is necessary in order to achieve the optimum interaction between the ink and the fabric, and in order to prevent the ink from running. This is now possible with the Mimaki TR300-1850C Pre-Treatment Unit or with the Mimaki TR600-1850W hybrid Coater/Washing Unit.

  • Step 2: Printing directly on textiles.

    This is possible with a digital textile inkjet printer, such as the Tiger-1800B MkII or the TX300P series (TX300P-1800 & TX300P-1800B).

  • Step 3: Steaming the printed fabric.

    This step is required in order to fix the ink on the fabric. In order to do this, a machine like the Mimaki TR300-1850S Steamer or the Mimaki TR600-1850S Steamer can be used.

  • Step 4: Washing the printed fabric.

    With this last step, unfixed residual ink and treatment agent are removed from the fabric. This can be done with the Mimaki TR600-1850W Washer, for example. The textile is then prepared for the next steps in the production and distribution process.

With this one-stop solution for coating, printing, steaming and washing machines, companies in the textile industry now have complete control over their production process. And thanks to our service network in 150 countries, customers have a single point of contact for all support for their textile production process, allowing them to save a lot of time, effort and money. This is how you really make use of all the advantages of digital textile printing.

Five Ways to Improve Interior Decoration with Digital Printing

Digital printing is becoming more and more accessible and affordable. This leads to an increase in creative ways to create interior decoration using on-demand printing. Here are five inspiring ways to use digital print technology to decorate a home or business environment.

Mark Sollman, Application Manager at Mimaki

With any innovative technology, it can initially take time before we recognise and acknowledge its full potential. Think about the introduction of the iPad in 2010. At the time, everyone wondered what they would do with such an oversized iPhone, but since then, more than 350 million iPads have been sold — a multiple of that of tablet computers from other brands. In 2010, it was difficult to recognise the broad number of uses for the tablet, and in 2018, we see the same thing in digital printing for decoration of homes and businesses. The essence of the technology is clear, but what can you actually use it for? Focusing on a few inspiring examples of innovative digital print applications has the ability to drive a revolution in the field of interior decoration. Here are five tips to get you started.

1. Wallpaper

Wallpaper is indeed the most obvious use of digital printing for interior decoration. For a long time, wallpaper had a very corny and old-fashioned image, but new modern designs and on-demand digital printing changed this. As a result, this decor staple from way back when has suddenly become cool again in recent years. Nowadays, suppliers can provide wallpaper in just about any design, either based on their own designs or according to a customer’s specifications. Do you want wallpaper with a specific photo, colour scheme or maybe of a certain structure or fabric? Thanks to inkjet print technology, all of this is completely possible, namely using sublimation, UV or latex printing.

2. Upholstery

Digital printing and upholstery is a golden combination. The design of a fabric no longer needs to be generic and suitable for mass production. Various types of fabrics can be printed on-demand (even silk!) with any possible design and in any required quantity. As such, the uses are endless and affordable. Think about unique curtains, upholstery for chairs and couches, bedding and pillows. The upholstery can be designed to perfectly blend in with the colour scheme or print required by the interior decorator. Sublimation print technology also delivers very lively colours, enabling even bright tropical colours to be used effectively.

3. Glass

When we mention decorative glass, most people think about stained glass windows. Thanks to UV curable digital printing technology, printing can be done on more and more materials, including glass! An additional benefit of this technique is that the printed designs are scratch- and waterproof and it will not fade with time. This sounds awesome, but does this mean we are going to print masses of one type of stained glass window? No, there are many more uses of glass printing besides stained glass windows. Keep in mind that glass does not always need to functionally fit in a frame. Glass panels could, for example, also be used to give an artsy or modern twist to the architecture or interior decoration. It is possible to print more than two thousand transparent or covering colours on standard glass or structured glass. This can be done to completely transform a bathroom, meeting room, office, hotel lobby, or a wall.

4. Tiles

In addition to glass, it is also possible to print directly on ceramic tiles. This offers amazing new opportunities to print unique designs on floor and wall tiles for kitchens, bathrooms, swimming pools or to create a complete mural. Printing on demand enables a design to be distributed seamlessly across multiple tiles, or even an entire wall. This introduces a new level of interior decoration potential for these areas. Finally, there is also another recognisable use: do you need more tiles for a certain project where the original tiles you purchased are no longer available? A small batch can be reproduced on request using digital printing technology.

5. Wood

We started with the most obvious use of digital printing and end with probably the most surprising: wood. For those who like a more rustic, country atmosphere in the home or business environment, digital UV printing technology can be used to print directly on wood. This can be done on small objects or panels, but there are also large format printers that can be used to print directly on a door! This gives restaurants, cafés or hotels new options to include unique printed wooden elements in their interior design. Without digital printing technology, this would indeed be almost impossible and unaffordable, due to the manual labour required. Now this unique design element is within easy reach for projects of any size.

Behind the Flags and Banners at 2018 FIFA World Cup

From video assistant referees (VARs) to goal-line technology, many state-of-the-art technologies operate in the background for the success of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Sergey Babenko, the CEO of Simvol, who is one of the official signage producers for the 21st FIFA World Cup, reflects on one technology that is often overlooked, but has massively contributed to the look and feel of the biggest football event of the year: digital printing.

Founded in 1996, Simvol is Russia’s largest producer of flags and State symbolic textile-based signage. The company is located in Kropotkin, Krasnodar Territory, and has sales offices in all major Russian cities. Led by CEO Sergey Babenko, Simvol was most recently tapped to produce signage for the 2018 Soccer World Cup hosted by Russia.

“We had already done significant work to support the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi,” Babenko explained. “We were very proud of the work we did in the production and installation of all of the flags and banners for one of the most important events in our country, under the most difficult mountain conditions. So it made sense to tap us to produce flags for the 2018 Soccer World Cup. Participants see our products in almost all of the cities where the matches are being held, including Sochi, Volgograd, Samara, Moscow and St. Petersburg. Plus, we produced sportswear and accessories to help fans actively support their teams. It is exciting to think that these items will be spread all around the world once the matches are over!”

Early adopter

While Simvol began its life producing screen-printed sewn flags without any uniform standards and sizes, the production process today has evolved dramatically.

“Screen printing is very labor intensive,” said Sergey Babenko. “And the results were unpredictable. To overcome these issues, Simvol was one of the first companies in Russia to adopt heat transfer dye sublimation printing technology. We worked with Smart-T, a reseller to the industry, to determine the best printing solution for our needs. Not only did we transition much of our production to heat transfer dye sublimation, but we were also creative in the use of our existing screen-printing equipment to add unique finishing to our dye sub flags and signs. Plus, we also offer embroidery, applique, fringe and other embellishments to set our flags apart from the competition.”

While Simvol’s early experimentation with heat-transfer dye sublimation was less than satisfactory, the company continued to evaluate new offerings as they came on the market. “In 2004,” Babenko added, “we reached out to Smart-T and they immediately proposed a solution. We acquired a Mimaki JV4, which increased our press speed by a factor of 10, and we are still using that printer today! In addition to flags, we started printing desktop tags, pennants and chevrons.”

Along with the JV4, Simvol has also added a number of other printers to its fleet over time. This includes a Mimaki DS-1600 for direct-to-fabric printing and a TS34 for heat-transfer dye sublimation. Most recently, the company acquired a Mimaki JV300. “This is the model we look to use as our primary production platform in the future,” Babenko commented. “It has the ability to replace all of our other printers.”

Babenko is also excited about the Mimaki Tiger 1800B production class textile printer. “This printer has exceptional speed and quality,” he said. “As we continue to grow, we will consider adding one or more of these printers to our fleet. It will really set us apart in the marketplace and allow us to produce orders even faster.”

Out-of-this-world experience

Simvol has other notable accomplishments in its history book as well. The backdrop with the standard of the President of Russia against which he holds official events was produced by Simvol. And the company’s work has also visited space. “We developed and produced a pennant in honor of the 95-year anniversary of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation,” Babenko stated, “which the Russian astronaut Anton Shkaplerov took into orbit. Also, for more than ten years Simvol has produced battle flags at the request of the Government and Ministries of Russian Federation.”

Today, the company produces a wide range of textile-based products, including flags, banners, pennants and sportswear on five Mimaki printers. Simvol produces some 40,000 jobs per year, with run lengths ranging from one to 10,000.

Babenko is also very proud of his staff. “I have a staff of very talented people who love what they do and are dedicated to delivering the best quality,” he concluded. “We closely follow all new trends and are always seeking new markets and opportunities. The support we get from Mimaki and Smart-T are key to our success, and we look forward to continuing our journey with them far into the future.”

Mimaki Joins Stars Innovation’s 20th Anniversary Celebration

Mimaki Joins Stars Innovation ’s 20th Anniversary Celebration

Mimaki joined Stars Innovation S.A.L., its partner in Lebanon, last week to celebrate their 20th anniversary. Taking place at Casino du Liban, the ceremony saw Stars Innovation award Mimaki Europe and other partners for their long-established strategic partnerships. The celebration also coincided with Project Lebanon 2018, the premier trade exhibition for construction materials and equipment in the region, in which Stars Innovation participated with great results. The show took place from 26 – 29 June at the Seaside Arena, Beirut.

“Our sincere congratulations go to Stars Innovation on their 20th anniversary,” said Ms Danna Drion, Senior Marketing Manager EMEA of Mimaki Europe. “Stars Innovation has always been a valued partner of Mimaki in the region. Having benefited from their impeccable knowledge and unbeatable expertise, we believe Stars Innovation is the right partner to help us maintain our position as the market leader in Lebanon. We look forward to continuing our relationship for years to come.”

Mimaki solutions highlighted at Project Lebanon 2018

At the show, Stars Innovation put a number of Mimaki’s latest solutions on display, from its industry leading UV printers to its innovative range of textile printers. Some of Mimaki’s latest releases especially attracted much attention from the crowd:

  • The UCJV300 Series. This latest UV release from Mimaki was the main attraction at the stand of Stars Innovation. UCJV300 printers deliver a remarkable range of applications and versatility with four-layer printing in addition to five-layer printing capabilities. Their integrated cut functionality enables volume production of labels, decals, window clings, vehicle markings and more in each unit. The printers also utilize flexible UV inks that cure instantly, allowing customers to quickly print and immediately move to the finished product without waiting for drying.
  • The Tx300P-1800. Engineered exclusively for direct-to-fabric printing, the Mimaki Tx300P-1800 includes many features found in high-end direct-print models, but with a lower cost-of-ownership model that is suitable for users creating samples or short-run pieces. It also features Mimaki’s unique dual ink capability, with which users can simultaneously load both textile pigment and sublimation dye inks on one printer.

Sakae Sagane, Chairman of Mimaki Europe, has retired

Sagane turned Mimaki into a reputable global brand and a major industry player in Europe, the Middle East and Africa

Mimaki today announced that its Chairman, Sakae Sagane, who also served as Executive Vice President for Mimaki Engineering Company, has retired effective 28 June 2018, after leading Mimaki Europe since 2005. Sagane grew Mimaki Europe from a small Mimaki subsidiary to the business unit contributing the most revenue compared to other Mimaki subsidiaries. Under his leadership, Mimaki Europe grew its network of dealers and distributors across the region, completed the acquisition of Mimaki-nbn GmbH in 2008 (now Mimaki Deutschland), and established Mimaki Eurasia in Turkey to more specifically address the needs within that region. In addition, Mimaki Europe positioned itself as a major industry player under his leadership, strengthening its position in signs and display graphics and textiles, while also beginning to establish a foothold in 3D printing. Annual turnover for Mimaki Europe was €46 million in 2006, growing to €125 million by the end of Mimaki’s fiscal year in March 2018, contributing more than 31% of total Mimaki turnover.

“Mimaki Europe has truly prospered under Sagane’s leadership, as have our customers,” said Yuji Ikeda, Managing Director at Mimaki Europe. “His vision took us from a small regional player to a force to be reckoned with in the markets we serve. This includes several acquisitions and our joint venture with Bompan in Italy that have enabled Mimaki to become a total solutions provider with an end-to-end ecosystem of solutions for the growing digital textile printing market. He also helped us successfully navigate through and overcome the difficulties of the European debt crisis. Mimaki Europe started out with only 5 employees back in 2005 and this number has grown to more than 100 today. We sincerely thank him for his many years of service. He will be missed.”

“The time I spent developing Mimaki Europe has been extremely rewarding,” Sagane said. “We have an outstanding team that has been a delight to work with, and a cadre of loyal and innovative customers that both pushed us to higher performance levels and rewarded us with their business. It is with mixed emotions that I leave this vibrant and growing business to take on the next phase of my life.”