BEAR NECESSITIES – Panda Press go for a five colour Hans Gronhi

Laurence from Panda (left) taking delivery of the new printer
Laurence from Panda Press (left) taking delivery of the new printer

Panda Press (Stone) Ltd has become the latest printer to expand with the help of a brand new Hans Gronhi press from Printers Superstore. Following a deal signed at IPEX, a five colour GH525 B3 machine is about to be installed at the company’s 5,000 sq ft premises in Stone, Staffordshire.
MD Laurence Tunnicliffe is not only a second generation printer, his father-in-law is Nigel Passmore, from the well known printing family. With “ink in the veins” Mr Tunnicliffe has an eye for a great printing machine.

“There is not much between commercial offset presses nowadays,”

he says.

“Output quality is the same, most share the same features, and specifications are similar. The difference with the Hans Gronhi machine is that it has everything we need, it’s very well engineered, but unlike the rest, it’s priced sensibly.”

Laurence says that the economic advantages of the Hans Gronhi machine do not end with the low capital investment.

“The consumables are also competitively priced, and we will save on our electricity bill, because this five colour machine uses less power than the four colour machine it is replacing.”

Panda Press takes on a range of general commercial work from a wide spread of customers, mainly but not exclusively from the local area. The choice of a five colour press was made for two reasons as Laurence explains:

“We use quick dry inks but we will still benefit from having a sealing unit to assist drying time when we are under pressure,” he says. “Also we appreciate the importance of brand matching and other special colour work, so having a dedicated fifth unit will be worthwhile.”

Panda Press has a turnover in the region of £450,000 per year, and has 8 staff. One of the company’s strengths is its design capability, with over half its work designed in-house – and it has a comprehensive finishing line-up. Mr Tunnicliffe is optimistic about the future:

“We see run lengths continuing to fall and expect to continue picking up work for our B3 machines which previously B2 printers would handle,”

he says.