APG Media Acquires 4 Wyoming Newspapers

The daily newspapers in Cheyenne, Laramie, Rawlins and Rock Springs, Wyoming, have been sold by the McCraken and Richardson Families to APG Media of the Rockies, according to John Cribb, Cribb, Greene & Cope, who represented the sellers in the transaction. The four newspapers dominate the southern tier of Wyoming, and include the state capital and the significant Wyoming college town.

APG is a subsidiary of Adams Publishing Group, LLC, a family owned media company headquartered in St. Louis Park, Minnesota.

“We are extremely pleased that the Adams group has purchased all four of our daily newspapers, and we feel that they will be excellent operators who will continue to provide solid local news coverage for our communities,” said L. Michael McCraken, former WTE publisher.

“We’re very excited to have the McCraken group of newspapers and digital products join our company going forward,” said Stephen Adams, chairman of APG. “The McCraken family has been a stalwart steward of its newspapers for generations, and it’s our goal to continue their tradition of locally focused, community-driven editorial and reporting.”

The daily newspapers included in the transaction are: the Cheyenne Wyoming Tribune Eagle; the Laramie Boomerang; the Rawlins Daily Times; and the Rock Springs Rocket-Miner.

Cribb, Greene & Cope is a newspaper brokerage, appraisal and consulting firm with offices in Montana, Virginia and Missouri.

MAR Graphics Installs 5-Color RDP Marathon UV Press

MAR Graphics recently completed the installation of a five-color RDP Marathon UV web press.MAR Graphics utilizes the press to quickly and cost-effectively produce direct-mail pieces, jumbo rolls and other print pieces. The press is equipped with inter-station UV dryers, a jumbo roll rewind and a continuous fan-folding device for direct mail and other transactional document applications.

“The addition of this press allows us to not only react more quickly to customer delivery requirements, it also allows us to expand on our capacity to meet higher quality expectations,” said Rick Roever, president, MAR Graphics. “Our ability to deliver within tight deadlines is critical in the direct mail and jumbo roll market. This press gives us more horsepower to get that done.”

In addition, MAR Graphics operates UV half-web presses from six to 10 colors, several UV forms web presses, flexo print and inkjet systems, multiple color and black-and-white digital print systems, web finishing lines, and a full service lettershop

IIJ inkjet tech goes wider and into foiling

Industrial Ink Jet (IIJ) was involved in two new implementations for Konica Minolta inkjet heads at Labelexpo. The firm showed the MonoPrint 500i system on its own booth. The 20in (508mm) single-colour configuration on an AB Graphics Omega platform was printing 600×1,200dpi resolution at 100m/min.

“It’s a much bigger, higher resolution and faster system,” said IIJ director of technology Paddy O’Hara. “We are printing down to 2pt text. It is ideal for small text and barcodes, or for adding language variations as a spot colour.”

The MP500i was printing black, but it can also be used with specialist security inks. It uses KM1800i printheads. O’Hara said the MP500i could be configures as a standalone unit, as demonstrated, or integrated into a flexo press. He said the target price was £100,000 for the print engine.

Separately, IIJ’s German representative Jochen Renfordt has worked with flexible die and rotary tool specialist Spilker on a new variable cold foiling system, also shown at Labelexpo on the Spilker booth.

The foiling line is equipped with IIJ’s 142 Colour Print system, jetting a type of varnish that the foil sticks to, allowing users to produce variable foiled text or designs. The two firms have worked to optimise the amount of varnish, pressure and subsequent curing required.
O’Hara described the quality of the foiling being produced as “incredible”.

Renfordt added: “It was running at 25m/min and we want to go up to 60 or 70m/min. This is the target. It works perfectly so now we will make a module that can go on any Spilker machine.”

Prinovis to be a 100% Bertelsmann business

Bertelsmann has taken sole ownership of pan-European gravure printer Prinovis. Prinovis Liverpool: one of four European gravure sites The German media giant’s Be Printers division has bought out the 25.1% stake in the business owned by publishing group Axel Springer.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed, and it is subject to the approval of European anti-trust authorities. Prinovis was formed a decade ago when Bertelsmann divisions Arvato and Gruner & Jahr amalgamated their gravure printing operations with those of Axel Springer, forming the largest gravure printer in Europe in the process.

In 2012 Bertelsmann spun off its gravure and international printing operations into a new division, Be Printers. Be Printers chief executive Bertram Stausberg thanked Axel Springer for its involvement and said: “Together we have matched the challenges posed by the market and positioned the company well for the future.” Axel Springer will remain a customer of the business.

Be Printers posted a 24.9% decline in sales to €362m (£268.5m) in the first six months of the year, although this period followed the sale of its Italian printing operation in September 2014, and included the disposal of its €137m-turnover Spanish print sites to Wyndeham Group owner Walstead in May.

Operating EBITDA halved to €12m from €25m the prior year. The division employs around 3,500 staff in Europe and the US. Its four European gravure sites include the £64m-turnover Prinovis facility in Liverpool and factories in Ahrensburg, Dresden and Nuremberg in Germany.

Prinovis UK managing director Richard Gray said: “It really is business as usual. The Liverpool plant was set up under the Arvato banner anyway, and people have always thought of us as a Bertelsmann company.”

At the beginning of the year the Dresden site became a hybrid gravure and web offset operation after it invested in two Manroland Lithoman 48pp web presses to allow it to respond to the decline in the gravure market by producing shorter runs, more quickly.