New leadership & new business momentum at The Printers House (tph)

The Printers House (tph) is a household name known for being the first and foremost Indian manufacturer of web offset presses which are acclaimed amongst leading newspaper houses in India and abroad. Today, at the helm of the company is Rishab Kohli, Director, The Printers House (P) Ltd, son of MM Kohli and grandson of Late KD Kohli. Rishab is young and enthusiastic, taking the business of tph to a new level along with his extremely experienced and ambitious team of directors and management.

Late KD Kohli, a freedom fighter newspaper man in India, founded The Printers House (tph) in the year 1946. The main objective of the company was to fill up the gap in newspaper printing technologies in India.

“As the next generation taking the business forward, my team and I have an immense responsibility to uphold and further the reputation of tph that my father and grandfather had preserved for years,” says Rishab adding that tph keeps continuing its journey of constant growth and technological innovations. The company is currently projecting an increase in overall performance even during the COVID-19 pandemic. In this, Rishab shares, “We are proud to say that in 2020, despite the pandemic hindrance, our overall performance is projected to be higher than that of the preceding years in all aspects.”

He continues, “The pandemic never stopped us from working. We worked during these unprecedented times, helping our customers overcome their issues, no matter the hurdles or cost.” Referring to the current print media market of India, Rishab observes that there is room for expansion for the language newspapers, especially in the regional domain. “There are sections of society who are extremely interested in local news that is crucial for their day to day life. Newspaper houses are really taking advantage of this which is what I have personally seen this past year,” he emphasises.

Is it print vs digital?

In his take on the decline of print newspaper circulations, Rishab says it’s a fact that circulations of many newspapers all over the world have been on a decline over last one decade or so. However, this scenario has somewhat altered now.

“When you look at the findings of 30thedition of WAN-IFRA’s World Press Trends Report, one can clearly see that the overall reduction in print readership is extremely low, and so, print is perhaps no longer on this aforementioned steep decline. The balance between print and digital is now at a new normal to which the market must adapt,” mentions Rishab. He adds, “There is perhaps no longer an ominous war between print & digital anymore. Both the mediums go hand-in-hand in this new news media world that we live in.”

Rishab further mentions, “Print is obviously extremely important for commercial printers and to this day print revenues globally still accounts for approximately 86 percent of even news publishers’ revenue.” Additionally on the commercial printing market Rishab notes that commercial printers especially in regions such as Asia, Africa, the Middle East and South America are doing exceptionally well and rely on products such as ours to fuel their growth.”

He adds, “As such, print is an extremely important part of our socio-economic eco-system and as key suppliers to the print industry we must put our best foot forward and ensure that we provide continued support and innovation.”

New developments

The newspaper business at this new normal in terms of circulation and readership, as mentioned above, now has other supply requirements too. Newspapers are penetrating heavily into not only tier-I cities now but also tier-II cities all around the country. Additionally, with this new normal of print circulations along with the market penetration, there is a huge demand for web-offset presses like Orient specifically at the speeds of 30,000 – 36,000 cph.

During the year 2020 tph had engaged in a number of deals and initiations. Sakala is one of them. “We have recently completed a deal with Sakala, one of the leading newspaper groups in Odisha, which is installing Orient X-Cel presses in four of their locations during the pandemic period,” tells Rishab.

Additionally, tph has also been able to show its technological prowess this year through its supply of a large installation of a shaftless press to Myanmar. “We are extremely happy that even in these trying times we were able to supply a fully automated shaftless machine to Myanmar. This truly exhibits the engineering abilities of tph and its dedication to technological innovation.” mentions Rishab. tph also has a number of new and exciting projects underway in the web offset space itself which will be unveiled in 2021.

Globally acclaimed brand

The family of tph Orient presses are engineered featuring mono unit with integral reel stand, stack units, three-colour satellites, 4-Hi towers to produce best of quality colours at par with any international web offset manufacturer. The presses are designed to churn a wide line of published materials, ranging right from newspapers to books and periodicals, at the printing speed of upto 50,000 cph. “In the wake of pandemic what newspaper houses need is cutting production cost without compromising in print quality. This is what we offer our customers with Orient presses,” tells Rishab.

Refined aesthetic of Orient press, extensive knowledge and master craftsmanship of tph has won the trust of many publishers and publishing houses in the both domestic and international markets. Orient uses the best CNC machining tools to craft the printing elements and meet the most complex requirement of many a publisher. The state-of-the-art R&D division and constant quality enhancement processes enable tph to respond quickly to the special need of every other printing house.

In every production setup

One can say Orient presses are running in every production setup of every single newspaper house in India. The presses are common among various book publishing houses too. Newspapers which have been printed on Orient presses in India include Hindustan Times, Dainik Bhaskar, Bhaskar Prakashan, Amar Ujala, The Indian Express, Lokmat, Rajasthan Patrika, Daily Ajit, The Tribune, Nava Bharat, Deshabhimani, Madhyamam, Namasthe Telegana, Andhrajyothy, Assam Tribune, Sanmarg, The Samaja, Sambad, to name a few.

In the overseas market, Orient presses have been installed in the plants of leading newspapers and printing companies in USA, Italy, Netherlands, China, Afghanistan, Australia, Bhutan, New Zealand, Nepal, South Africa, Denmark, Finland, Russia, South Korea, Sweden, UAE, Finland, West Indies, and many others in Europe, Middle East and Africa. Tph has supplied to around 50 countries world over.

“We have installed 400 4-Hi towers in China alone. The mention of the some newspaper houses or newspaper printing firms in the overseas where our Orient presses are currently running will include: Azadi Press (Afghanistan), Bhutan Today (Bhutan), Changzhou Daily (China), Lansi-Savo (Finland), Litosud (Italy), The Marlborough Express (New Zealand), The Tribune (USA), Daily Prothom Alo, Daily Star, Dainik Azadi (Bangladesh), Daily Lankadeepa (Sri Lanka), Le Defi, La Sentille Ltd. (Mauritius), The Myanmar Times, The Standard Time Daily (Myanmar), Gorkhapatra, Kantipur Post (Nepal), Punch Newspaper (Nigeria), Red Pepper (Uganda), The Herald (Zimbabwe) and many others,” informs Rishab.

In addition to its export presence, branch offices of tph are established in many major cities and towns in India, such as Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Kottayam, Mumbai and Thiruvananthapuram. Tph has also recently opened an office in Bhubaneswar. In his goodwill message to industry fellows, Rishab coveys that the team tph is now fully geared up to help their customers regain normalcy in the post-lockdown period and do business to the fullest.

Seven regional dailies claim 80 percent plus advertising recovery

A letter signed by representatives from Amar Ujala, Eenadu, Hindustan, Sakshi, Dainik Jagran, Dainik Bhaskar and Malayalam Manorama went to stakeholders claiming 80 percent plus advertising recovery. It shows that spirit of ‘Bharat’ is visibly gathering pace and Indian language newspapers are one of the many beneficiaries of this growing story. The seven language dailies have come together to reach out their stakeholders through a common letter that announces an 80-90 percent circulation surge and 80 percent plus advertising recovery, compared to pre-pandemic times.

An excerpt from the letter reads that the Indian economy is currently witnessing a very healthy recovery with the vaccine drive gaining momentum and GST collection showing a growth trend. Tier-II & III and other markets of Bharat contributed in a significant way to bring back the demand and delivering sales for a variety of businesses including but not limited to automobile, consumer durables, FMCG, education and most importantly, real estate. Indian language newspapers contributed to this growth and also benefited from positive market sentiments. The newspaper circulation is now at the 80-90 percent range of pre-COVID ABC’s audited circulation and most importantly the advertisement revenue has now reached the level of around 80% plus pre-COVID.

The letter is signed by Rajul Maheshwari from Amar Ujala, I Venkat from Eenadu, Rajeev Beotra from Hindusthan, Vinay Maheshwari from Sakshi, Shailesh Gupta from Dainik Jagran, Girish Agarwal from Dainik Bhaskar and Jayant Mammem Mathew from Malayalam Manorama.

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