Invigorating world's press
IFRA Expo 2011 marks success witnessing
new solutions from the industry majors
With more than 1,100 publishers, chief editors, managing directors, CEOs and other senior newspaper executives from 102 countries gathered in Vienna during the world newspaper week (Oct 10-15) for IFRA Expo 2011, Info Services Expo 2011, the 63rd World Newspaper Congress and 18th World Editors Forum, the news publishing industry invigorated witnessing innovations, knowing about best practices across the globe and observing opportunities to still grow. Focusing on the transformation of the industry in the digital age, the event featured all major developments happened over the year. IFRA Expo 2011 especially highlighted offerings from newspaper technologies and solutions providers.
The world's press opened their annual summit meetings with a call for greater press freedom in the Middle East, and acknowledgement of the role of media – both new and traditional – played in democratic uprisings in the region. "While the world’s media scrambled to cover these epochal events, it was liberation time for journalists and news media," said Jacob Mathew, president of WAN-IFRA, during the opening ceremony of the 63rd World Newspaper Congress, 18th World Editors Forum and Info Services Expo 2011 in Vienna, Austria. "It was heartening when citizens who were denied access to any news quickly responded to news channels, newspapers and the new media in a big way in the Arab world," he said further adding, "It was a legitimate base for media which was oppressed for decades."
Alok Sanwal, project head and editor, I-Next, addressing
the eminent gathering during |
the World Young Reader
Mathew acknowledged the role that emerging social media played in the revolutions. "These mass movements remind the global print media that freedom of expression can take unexpected and unprecedented routes if there are restrictions in the traditional media," he said. "It is important that we plan for convergence of all platforms. Our strategies should address the changing scenario and we need to be in tune with the wavelength of the youth as they spearhead changes everywhere."
"We are all aware of the big strategies, issues and challenges fast emerging in the digital world," Mathew said, adding, "This is the time for innovations and new business ideas. Innovations are born out of potential and not out of limits. WAN-IFRA is giving much importance to innovations and research and they will play a key role in making print media more relevant in the busy media matrix."
Mathew also touched on the phone hacking scandal in the United Kingdom and its impact on perceptions about news media ethics everywhere. "This incident sparked off demands for greater control on media, especially by the government and the so called civil society. There are calls for new legislation and some have even sought enforcement of draconian punishments to editors, journalists and publishers," he said, "The important aspect here is that increased government regulation is not the answer. Media should encourage itself, and should be encouraged by others, to have its own self regulatory mechanism, and news media organizations should ensure greater accountability from their journalists and executives. Crossing the ethical line is repugnant. The credibility of the news media is under great public scrutiny and it calls for introspection and self correction in the industry. Privacy issues will become more complex when journalism tools become technology driven. To increase privacy laws really risks having an impact on press freedom. Let us not forget that it was newspapers themselves free to do their jobs that unravelled the recent unfortunate scandal. Such vigilance is an innate part of our character."
On successful note…
A group of technical professionals from The Times of
India at the stand of All About Newspapers.
The world’s largest trade fair for the news publishing industry, IFRA Expo 2011 closed on successful note on October 12. Some 8,000 visitors from more than 90 countries visited the show. “Visitor numbers are significantly higher than that of two years ago. However, they are slightly lower than that of last year in Hamburg, but that was a very special year due to the hype about tablets, so last year visitors simply had to attend while now the interest in tablets is settling down to business,” commented Christoph Riess, CEO for WAN-IFRA. The expo also featured a Tablet and E-Reading Conference and Focus Sessions on newspaper production. There were a number of major announcements and developments unveiled at the show, including orders for press equipment, workflow solutions, content management systems, and, naturally, tablet applications. Riess cited the multinational nature of the audience and pointed out that by day two of expo, more than 200 Congress delegates had entered the halls to talk with exhibitors. “It was interesting to see publishers and editors investigating technologies at the show,” he said.
Anil Bhatia, managing director, manroland India (extreame
right) with team of WAN-IFRA India/Singapore.
According to Eric Bell, director of marketing services at Goss International, “Goss came to the show with a positive attitude because of the order for a new press. The three-day show is the new norm now and the first day was slower than at Hamburg but still reasonable – the second day however was absolutely unbelievable in terms of volume and quality of visitors.” “Just look at the stand. Full. Today [second day of the show] is busier than yesterday but yesterday we were already satisfied with the volume and the quality of visitors is very good with a lot of decision-makers,” commented Christian Seitz, head of marketing events at manroland. “The first two days we were fully booked, and today has surprisingly been quite busy. In addition to the larger orders we announced here, which were closed just before the show, we were pleasantly surprised to make some smaller deals with existing customers at the event," added Norbert Ohl, CEO of ppi Media. “The Expo provides us with high-quality leads, decision-makers rather than people asking for brochures,” conveyed Hans Janssen, CEO, Woodwing Software.
The 41st annual exhibition included 306 exhibitors from 30 countries, including printing press manufacturers, editorial and advertising system providers, new media providers and other suppliers to the newspaper industry.
Goss International introduced the new press Colorliner CPS. The company developed the new Colorliner CPS (Compact Printing System) model using many of the features from its proven high-performance FPS (Flexible Printing System) model to address the needs of printers requiring versatility, high print quality, simplified operation and a high level of performance relative to investment. The unique compact design makes the new press ideally suited for greenfield sites as well as existing press halls, including installations involving an existing support structure. DC Thomson & Company Ltd, a leading newspaper publisher in Scotland will be the first to install a Goss Colorliner CPS press in an eight-tower configuration which will include heatset capacity. The press to be installed at DC Thomson will print up to 90,000 copies per hour, driven by a full automation package including Goss Autoplate plate changing technology and closed-loop controls.
“We are taking the lead in offering a new, more cost-effective compact press model that delivers value, automation and performance features that newspaper publishers and printers need to stay competitive and create new opportunities,” said Jochen Meissner, Goss International president and CEO, adding that the Colorliner CPS press complements the compact Goss FPS press, which offers a split-apart tower design and changeable cut-off option. “The new compact model rounds out our comprehensive single- and double-width press portfolio and further extends our ability to give customers the best option for any production requirement or business model.”
Self explaining picture – three personalities of the world.
IFRA Expo 2011 also saw the launch of KBA’s new Commander CL, a four-high tower press with a choice of automation levels for printing high-quality newspapers and semi-commercials. An addition to KBA’s compact platform, the press has non-splittable H-type units that stand just 2.75m (9ft) high. Its most striking features are its module-based design and wide array of optional extras to expand the product spectrum.
Alongwith world premiere of COLORMAN e:line, their future-oriented solutions from manroland, ppi Media and Océ were among star attractions at the show. COLORMAN e:line is the name of the new flagship for newspaper printing. The first press of this type in blanket-to-blanket design and with a totally new appearance will be installed in 2012 at the Allgäuer Zeitungsverlag in Kempten, Germany. The concept is based on modular packages that can be retrofitted, automation modules for example. Automation with autoprint was another important topic at the show. Meanwhile twelve newspaper printing houses are producing with this system that was introduced at IFRA Expo 2008. And more are joining them: the WAZ Mediengruppe is investing a low double-digit million euro sum in two 48-page COLORMAN, XXL autoprint presses that will be installed in a completely new building. Under the term pressupdate, manroland also offers services for presses in the field: with Refurbishment, presses are thoroughly checked and refurbished, whereas Retrofit offers modernization. Within the scope of Reconfiguration, new manroland technology can also be combined well with newspaper printing systems from other manufacturers. And then there are upgrade solutions. On the second day of the show, customers and visitors had the opportunity to visit Herold Druck and see a COLORMAN, XXL autoprint in action.
IFRA Expo was also a complete success for manroland’s subsidiary company ppi Media. Two large orders were announced as booked during the show.
At the Expo in Vienna, WIFAG announced receiving an order from Hong Kong Economic Times for another press line comprising four full colour D390 towers. An additional order to the deal sealed at the beginning of this year. In January 2011, Hong Kong Economic Times signed a contract for the delivery of one new press line comprising eight full colour D390 towers and one folder as well as two full colour D390 towers as an extension to the existing D380 press. After installation of these recently ordered printing units, HKET will, together with existing Solna presses, have a total of 212 printing units running, largest Solna customer in the world. Meanwhile, the JCC Bruns Betriebs GmbH in Minden, Germany chose a WIFAG evolution 371.
To extend their offerings, WIFAG has developed a new kind of plate changer, the Automatic Plate Exchanger APX. The development was done through collaboration with NELA, the leading supplier of register systems and automation solutions for the pre-press industry. The APX takes plate automation to a new level. Operator interaction at the press is reduced to a minimum. Multiple Productions can be loaded with plates handled as a single package, which reduces mistakes, operator time at the machine and plate damage through handling. The system distributes the plates automatically to the right zones on the cylinder. Up to 12 plates can be loaded as a single package. New packages or single Plates can be continuously added to the loader. The system requires less accuracy in plate delivery since the plates will be positioned just before they are pushed over the register pins. Therefore, it is fairly easy to extend the system with automated plate logistics from the CtP.
Kodak also demonstrated business winning CtP flexibility alongwith digital printing solutions for newspapers, enabling publishers to get creative. Their booth was dedicated to addressing the varied requirements of newspaper and semi commercial newspaper printers, such as fully automated online computer-to-plate systems with flexible plate formats offering minimal operator effort, monitoring and intervention. Updated with new features, the Kodak GenerationNews platesetter demonstrated its newest features that enable up to four different plate formats to be online, increasing flexibility and uptime for newspaper printers. Users can now remotely monitor their plate line equipment including the CtP device, processor, and punch/bender, both from Kodak and third party manufacturers via the Kodak Intelligent Prepress Manager (IPM). Kodak also introduced the second generation non process newspaper printing plate. The company has already achieved great success with the first generation plate, which is used in over 100 accounts today. Also highlighted was the newest offering in the successful PROSPER S-Series, the Kodak Prosper S20 Imprinting System with CMYK. Kodak has also further extended its Versamark printing system range with eight new presses offering next generation piezo drop-on-demand (DOD) continuous feed printheads. Its flagship, and ideally suited to the newspaper sector, is the Versamark 500W printing system that provides full-colour output with more features for customers who need them. For small volume newspaper applications, the Kodak Versamark VL4200 printing system delivers improvements in operational efficiency and print quality to help distributors compete in a highly competitive market.
Krause again exhibited its latest CtP technology for a future oriented newspaper production. The company demonstrated complete CtP solutions including workflow systems, automated platesetters and processors for the entry, mid and high end level. The Krause platesetters and processors are proven to work reliably and energy efficient and as a result achieve a perfect process stability at lowest operating costs generating a perfect environmental balance. The high performance system LS Jet Multiformat with BlueFin has become the leading product for the automated and energy saving newspaper plate production within one year. Besides, the compact LS Performance platesetter in combination with the BlueFin LowChem clean out unit was displayed on the Fujifilm booth running Fujifilm Brillia Pro-VN plates. The plates per hour production of the LS Performance has been increased and now achieves up to 250 single plates, so that the LS Performance market segment now can achieve short production cycles as well. The speed upgrade can be retrofitted at installed platesetters as well.
One of the leaders in mailroom technologies, Ferag presented Navigator, a groundbreaking production control concept centered around intuitive multi-touch technology. Navigator sets completely new standards in the marketplace with regard to operating comfort and planning and production security. The company also promoted their MemoStick solutions.
Utilising the mailroom as a center for added value in a more focused manner with rewarding investments – Muller Martini showed numerous newspaper publishers just how this can be done at the popular IFRA Expo. The three-day trade fair reflected the growing interest of publishing houses in increasing added value for their newspaper products. Under the motto ‘Grow with us’, the focus of the demonstrations was high-output advertising journal production with the ProLiner inserting system, NewsStitch for integrated stitching, NewsTrim for integrated trimming and the ValueLiner gluer for adding cards.
The semi-commercial print samples with heatset glossy covers attracted particular interest at Muller Martini’s booth at the IFRA Expo. Products similar to daily newspapers can be trimmed directly by NewsTrim, which can be easily integrated into the mailroom workflow, without any need for stitching. This method is becoming increasingly popular, a fact that was underscored by the many in-depth discussions between newspaper publishers and the mailroom specialists from Muller Martini. The discussions continued in a relaxed atmosphere during the popular ‘blue hour’ evening sessions at Muller Martini's booth.
Besides, Agfa Graphics introduced: Arkitex Eversify, a SaaS (Software as a Service) solution for automating the delivery of newspapers to mobile devices. It has been designed specifically for newspapers that are looking for a straightforward way to enter the new world of mobile digital publishing without increasing production costs while still providing a rich reading experience. This solution allows publishers to deliver their newspapers to a variety of tablet and smart mobile devices. “Publishers are in the content business. Just as Agfa Graphics has helped them get their content on plates and finally on paper, with :Arkitex Eversify we can convert their content to a mobile platform. E-media and print will coexist. Our solution will allow newspapers to make money from e-media without having to make a large investment in technology and personnel,” said Jeff Cord, Newspaper software group at Agfa Graphics.
Baldwin was present to drive efficiency with press enhancing retrofits and upgrades. At IFRA Expo, Baldwin’s visitors learnt about the extensive range of individual and combined Baldwin solutions that drive the company theme for this year’s show, ‘Baldwin = Efficiency’, reflecting their strategy to continuously provide highly efficient, impactful solutions that transform and enhance pressrooms, bringing new market opportunities to print businesses. Baldwin launched its latest offerings: new air-cooled TowerCure UV curing system, easily retrofitted onto all makes of newspaper and semi-commercial presses; and new PureFiltration system. Baldwin’s numerous newspaper and semi-commercial web press retrofit and upgrade offerings were on display during IFRA Expo, including LithoSpray Maxima multi-faceted spray dampening system, and WebSiliconer in-line finishing system for semi-commercial web applications.
OneVision presented its latest software innovations in Vienna, by unveiling Asura 11.5, the latest version of its flagship solution for automated file correction, optimization and normalization. OneVision’s show highlights also included the ePublishing solution Mirado. They also unveiled a new version of Amendo, OneVision’s software tool for automated image enhancement.
QuadTech showcased their proven press-control solutions for lean production and high-quality newsprint at IFRA Expo 2011. Major newspaper printing operations note spectral precision of groundbreaking colour control and inspection technology; fan-out control and Proactive Care mean more reductions in waste, downtime. Under a theme of ‘the colour and inspection experts… moving you forward’, the global press control technology leader QuadTech demonstrated how its colour control, web inspection, register control and data management systems help newspaper printers significantly reduce waste and boost quality.
Ravi Dhariwal, CEO |
of The Times of India
With exhibitors including 4Cplus, Manugraph India Ltd, The Printers House (P) Ltd and All About Newspapers, and delegates from major newspapers such as The Times of India, The Hindu, Gujarat Samachar, Sakaal, Malayala Manorama, DNA, Jagran, Deccan Herald, Dinamalar, etc, India marked its effective presence at the event. But surprisingly, there was no delegate from one of the India’s largest newspapers Hindustan Times. Indian newspapers, including The Hindu, Mid Day, Mathrubhumi Daily and I-Next were awarded World Young Reader Prizes for their winning projects which attracted youths.
Many newspaper executives attending the World Newspaper Congress found a unique approach, as practiced by The Times of India: the publishing house takes equity in companies in return for advertising in its many publications. The ads-for-equity initiative has provided about 15 percent of TOI's advertising revenues over the past four years. "You can get your money back through many ways. It doesn't only have to be cash. Sometimes partnering with your client delivers a great deal of value back to yourself," said Ravi Dhariwal, CEO of The Times of India, at the Opportunities session of the Congress. Dhariwal presented several examples of how the programme works. TOI takes small stakes in companies that need brand building, which it provides through advertising space. The daily has invested in more than 350 companies, which sign up for terms lasting three to five years.
Krishnanurth Venkataraman, manager at Dinamalar in India, and a co-worker visited the IFRA Expo to find the right technology for their online content. "The IFRA Expo is the biggest of the business and therefore the right place to find the newest technology," Venkataraman says. "We are in the newspaper business, but we want to focus more on online content. That is why we came here," he said. Manjula Rajagopal, associate editor at Dinamalar, sees new challenges and chances in the emerging tablet market. Although the newspaper business in India is booming and gaining 10 percent per year, Rajagopal is expecting to lose a lot of revenue to the tablet market: "A whole generation will bypass the printed newspaper and get news on their tablet computer," she said. “Since the Indian government is handing out free tablet computers to students all over the country, Dinamalar, with a circulation of 8,50,000 copies, needs to adjust quickly,” added Rajagopal.
While print circulation continues to grow in India, there is also important growth in the digital markets, particularly mobile. The Malayala Manorama group is working hard to capture it. "Circulation is growing, though it is important to note here that the growth is from rural areas, and the urban youth are turning to TV, online and mobile," said Mariam Mammen Mathew, chief operating officer of Manorama Online in India, during Digital session of the Congress. Internet penetration is less than 10 percent, but the country has 519 million mobile subscribers. "Most Indians will first experience the web on their handset, not on PCs," she says. "There are a plethora of platforms vying for the media consumer. We need to innovate to get the eyeballs and retain our customers. "It's all about creating alternate revenue streams. The good news is the markets are slowly recognising the value of content. We empower our editors, we tell them content is important as there is value to it."
“The innovation begins with the name,” declared Shyam Parekh, editor of DNA Ahmedabad in India, at the Editors Forum session entitled ‘Innovation in print’. The English-language broadsheet launched in 2005, DNA (Daily News and Analysis) works hard to live up to its name. Published in the cities of Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Pune, Jaipur, Bengaluru and Indore, the newspaper was the first in the country to ditch the editors’ page – long deemed almost sacrosanct in Indian newspapers. “No newspaper has dared to drop its edit page – we did,” said Parekh. But the newspaper didn’t ditch the opinion or analysis: it moved it from a single page, buried in the paper, and instead included it in the relevant section. Business analysis appears on the business pages, international opinion appears on the world pages, and so on. The paper even includes opinion and commentary on the front page. Rather than confining the newspaper’s opinions to an editors’ page, the move “made readers realise the importance of our opinion,” explained Parekh.
New ‘print’ route via DIGITAL
Digital solutions from some of the industry majors including Océ, Kodak, WIFAG, etc, for newspaper printing added another feature to this IFRA Expo.
manroland’s cooperation partner Océ placed the focus on digital newspaper printing. The company has extended its inkjet portfolio and launched the new systems Océ ColorStream 3500, Océ JetStream 1400 and Océ JetStream 3000 onto the market. This permits up to 2,140 tabloid newspapers each with 36 pages to be printed per hour, which is efficient not only for special-interest topics and short runs. Moreover, already ten years ago Océ established the Digital Newspaper Network (DNN) that enables international newspapers to be printed directly at a remote location close to the readers. This year, the Swiss Post will be printing personalized newspapers with an Océ JetStream 1000, and Interval, a French print services provider, is to produce national and international newspapers by digital printing on an Océ JetStream 1400.
Kodak was also promoting their solutions for newspaper printing. The latest development builds on Kodak’s market leading position in inkjet technology are used to produce newspapers on a daily basis all over the world, most notably at Miller Print in Malta and Cyprus, RotOcéan in La Réunion, Acierta Newsprint in Spain, Newsprint Impresion Digital in Tenerife and Newsfax in the UK.
WIFAG entered the digital age of printing with an industrial in-house solution. WIFAG’s newest and completely future oriented development offers a wide spectrum of new applications unknown to conventional offset printing processes. The new WIFAG digital newspaper and book production lines consequently use the advantages of the single pass inkjet technology with no repeating printing form. With its new and totally variable folding equipment, the new WIFAG digital newspaper solution is an excellent tool for decentralized printing of a wide variety of newspaper and semi-commercial products for short to medium production runs. The folding equipment allows the same book structure as the conventional offset newspaper press which makes splitting of editions between digital and conventional offset production easy.
On one of the evenings during IFRA Expo in Vienna, an informal get-together was organised by Krause for its existing customers, prospects and their staff. The presence of Indian visitors representing top-of-the-line newspaper publishing houses converted this get-together into a big party. Glimpses of the same.
World Young Reader Awards presentation
Presentation of 24 awards for innovation and excellence in attracting and providing for young readers honoured some astoundingly bold projects from around the globe. Indian newspapers, including The Hindu, Mid Day, Mathrubhumi Daily and I-Next were awarded World Young Reader Prizes for their winning projects which effectively attract youths. The Young Reader Newspaper of the Year and winner of the Enduring Excellence Awards, Jawa Pos of Indonesia, turned out with a 40-strong group of supporters to celebrate the triumph. The paper has delivered consistently excellent service for young people, providing a daily youth section, which has led to 51 percent of their readership being under 30 years old. The paper also provides activities outside of print, such as a basketball league for young people.
Presentation of the winners of
2011 XMA Cross Media Awards
Ten media companies have won 2011 XMA Cross Media Awards, the annual prize from WAN-IFRA that focused this year on paid-for content apps for smartphones and tablets. The winning apps showed how publishers are tailoring content to reach a desired audience, readers who are willing to pay for that content. In some cases this meant a broad offer and in others very niche content. The XMAs, now in its sixth edition, honour companies that are using a wide variety of platforms - print, web, mobile, video and more - to deliver editorial and advertising content in innovative ways. “I was very happy and proud to see that storytelling is dominating over simply technical details or design enhancements,” said Mario Garcia, CEO/Founder of Garcia Media and XMA juror. “The editors, publishers and art directors seem to have made the story the protagonist. That’s a good thing, a fantastic lesson for all of us to get inspiration from.”
The XMA Cross Media Awards 2011 prize winners include: VG+, Verdens Gang, Norway; Sunday Times, News International Newspapers, UK; Die Schwäbische, Schwäbische Zeitung Online, Germany; Welt HD, Axel Springer, Germany; RP Plus, RP Online, Germany; Bloomberg Businessweek+, Bloomberg News, USA; VG’s TV-Guide for iPhone, iPad, Verdens Gang, Norway; Aftenposten, Aftenposten Multimedia, Norway; Ekspress Pro, Eesti Ajalehed, Estonia; and Style Living, Media Corp, Singapore.
awarded Golden Pen of Freedom
Dawit Isaak, who left Sweden for Eritrea to help build the country's independent press, and was imprisoned for his efforts – has been awarded the 50th anniversary Golden Pen of Freedom, the annual press freedom prize of WAN-IFRA which is being presented since 1961 to recognise the outstanding action, in writing or deed, of an individual, group or institution in the cause of press freedom.
An Eritrean émigré to Sweden who took Swedish citizenship, Dawit returned to his homeland following independence to co-found the country's first independent newspaper, Setit, which rose to national prominence and gained a reputation for investigative reporting. But, in 2001, the government closed Setit, along with all of the country's independence press, suspended civil liberties and jailed numerous journalists, including Dawit. He has been held in Eritrea for 10 years, most of it incommunicado. His whereabouts – or even if he is still alive – are unknown. "This award is an excellent opportunity to increase global awareness of Dawit's case and adds to the growing international pressure on the Eritrean authorities to provide information on his health and whereabouts," said Esaias Isaak, accepting the award on behalf of his brother during the opening ceremony of the World Newspaper Congress and World Editors Forum in Vienna.
"Dawit Isaak should have been a prominent, celebrated public figure for his work helping to build the new, desperately poor country in the horn of Africa," said Erik Bjerager, president of the World Editors Forum, who presented the award. "Instead, he was rewarded by being jailed without charge, without trial, for the past ten years. His family has been barred from visiting and he has disappeared into the silence of the notorious Eritrean prison system." In presenting the award, WAN-IFRA again called on Eritrean authorities to immediately release Isaak and all other imprisoned journalists in Eritrea, and for the international community to pressure the Eritrean government into doing so. Eritrea is ranked last on Reporters Without Borders "World Press Freedom Index," below even North Korea, Iran and Burma.
Through their resolutions, the World’s Press also called for greater protection of freedom of expression in Egypt, Ecuador and Mexico.
Next year’s IFRA Expo returns to Spain
IFRA Expo 2012 will be held in Madrid, Spain, during October 29-31, 2012 for the first time since 2003 when the show visited Barcelona. “We haven't been to Southern Europe for a while hence the decision to go to Madrid as our Expo has become very international,” said Riess. “Next year's Expo will feature a dedicated event for Latin American publishers to discuss investment opportunities in this booming marketplace. I would like to invite you all to meet your colleagues next year in the wonderful city of Madrid.”