Tim Edmunds, MD of retail specialist H&A, explains that following a partnership deal with an out-of-home advertising group in 2021, which specialises in wide-format billboard printing and taxi branding (mainly on roll-fed vinyls) across the continent, he helped spearhead a project to set up a new digital printing and finishing facility in Johannesburg called Hero Print.
‘We were interested in investing in the top-of-the-range EFI VUTEk D5r Superwide Roll-to-Roll LED printers. We contacted the local representatives at GSW towards the end of 2021. I learnt about GSW’s excellent end-to-end turnkey project management service and strategic expertise. GSW helped us plan the flow of the facility and the production lines, and professionally drove the best possible solutions in a record-breaking turnaround time of eight weeks after we signed the lease for the Randburg premises at the end of February.’
Tim emphasises that there aren’t enough superlatives to describe how much value the team including Rob Franco, Monique Dupont, Adam Querido and Andrew Harding added to this project and how helpful they were in taking the organisational burden off his shoulders. They liaised and coordinated with the electricians, compressed air and reticulated air suppliers and engineers to address some structural issues; recommended a complementary Mikami UVJ 100-160UV LED printer as well as the peripheral equipment required, including a BU-1600 warm laminator, 340/170R Rolls Roller flatbed applicator, pneumatic high-frequency welder, 2025 handheld welders and pneumatic eyelet machines, he explains.
GSW also coordinated each machine’s arrival from the various suppliers in different countries to tie in with the rigging and project teams’ on-site schedules. This was further assisted by clear communication and the strong relationship built between the two teams, including Hero Print’s production manager Shane Ramharak, who previously worked for GSW as a field service engineer and had a great understanding of how the technical department works. ‘The training process flowed well because as each machine arrived it was installed by the certified technicians, who then trained the appropriate production teams,’ Tim reports.
Furthermore, Tim believes that the project would have taken up a huge amount more of his time and been much more difficult to manage remotely from Durban had the GSW team not made themselves available on-site and provided such invaluable input to Hero Print.