In October 2017, Cewe decided to enhance its photobook offering with UV varnish and hot stamping at its plant in Eschbach (southern Germany) incorporating a digital finishing machine: the JETvarnish 3D Evo from the manufacturer MGI Digital Technology.

Encouraged by the total integration of the solution in its production flow, which allows the VDP finishing of millions of photobooks per year, the German manufacturer has just equipped its factory in Oldenburg (North Germany) with a second JETvarnish 3D Evo machine. An investment aimed at consolidating its strategic development in the finishing of photobooks.

Founded in 1961 in Oldenburg in northern Germany, Cewe had a innovative spirit since its inception and specialized in the emerging market of color photographic printing. This innovation strategy, added to a constant international development, was complemented by printing on objects from 1980, the implementation of a waste recycling policy in 1985, the launch in 1997 of the first photographic kiosk for shops, and the launch of the first photobook in 2005.

Cewe has become a reference brand in Germany, like the automaker BMW, before celebrating a year later the production of 50 million photobooks and consolidating its absolute leadership in the market. The company currently has about 3,500 employees in 11 countries.


Cewe, a differentiation strategy based on UV varnish and hot stamping

Cewe, leader in photobooks on the Internet, has always distinguished itself by the use of its online software and its high level of quality.

The high quality of Cewe's photobooks was not enough to consolidate the leadership of the German company and create an opportunity in the market, as stated by the technical director of the Eschbach plant (Freiburg im Breisgau), Michael Bühl: "To maintain our leadership position in the European photobook market, we had to innovate once again"

The working group in charge of the project concluded that we should improve our books with additional effects, such as UV varnish and hot foil. These effects are an unambiguous form of make a difference in the market. At Cewe we produce millions of photobooks, all different from one another, with tight deadlines and affordable prices. That is why we believed that conventional technologies did not fit into our development strategy.

Digital finishing exceeds market expectations

After studying the different solutions available in the market, Cewe decided bet on JETvarnish technology manufacturer MGI.

"Our specifications focused on four essential points"adds Michael Bühl. “First of all, we wanted to be able to use a industrial solution, a fully operational and proven technology, both for UV varnish and hot foil stamping. In addition, we were looking for a versatile technology that was able to adapt to all our materials and products, integrating perfectly into our production flow and with a high level of quality for both varnish and stamping. Finally, we wanted a manufacturer with effective customer service and an R&D department capable of serving our needs, because this investment was a strategic challenge for the company. MGI fulfilled our expectations in all these areas, and we decided to invest in MGI JETvarnish 3D Evo technology to equip our production centers ".

Victor Abergel, Vice President of MGI, does not hide his satisfaction: “From our first contact with Cewe, we are very proud to have been able to collaborate with the German manufacturer and add our digital finishing machine to its fleet of machines. The integration of JETvarnish 3D Evo into the production flow of the Freiburg plant demonstrates the value of variable data management of our solutions. Thanks to a barcode printed on each page that is personalized, this integration allows automatic adjustment of finishing, varnishing and foil operations, as well as varnish thickness and drying settings. The management of variable data in real time offered by the JETvarnish 3D Evo allows us to fully automate the process, obtaining high productivity and the best quality on the market »

User friendly operation

Installed in October 2017, the integration of the MGI JETvarnish 3D Evo in the production flow of the Eschbach plant it was a complete success. The solution quickly convinced operators with its ease of use, making the JETvarnish 3D Evo the plant flagship, as Michael Bühl explains: “Commissioning of the JETvarnish 3D Evo went smoothly, and our operators quickly learned how to use it. Easy to use, clean and maintain, the JETvarnish 3D Evo only needs one type of varnish for UV varnishing and for hot foil finishing. The efficiency of its integration into our processes allows us to differentiate ourselves in the photobook market. The integration of finishing equipment into our production strategy was a success and has led us to invest in the same machine for our Oldenburg site. "

The prospects are good for Victor Abergel: “At MGI, we are proud to be able to contribute to Cewe's success with our technology. This case study shows that finishing and decoration represent a real strategic challenge for the graphic arts industry. We believe in the value and relevance of our finishing solutions in the commercial printing market, as well as in the container and packaging, labels, publishing market and web-to-print technology sectors ».

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