Océ Production Printers Help School Datebooks Increase Book Publishing Volume Almost 18 Percent

<p>December 9, 2010 – Trumbull, CT – Océ, an international leader in digital document management and delivery, announced that an involved, proactive Océ service team and an Océ VarioStream<sup>®</sup> 8650 production printer have helped School Datebooks, Inc. (www.schooldatebooks.com) increase output almost 18 percent over the previous year – and reduced costs by running more work using economical digital workflow instead of offset. </p> <p>For over 25 years, School Datebooks has served customers ranging from elementary schools to colleges. The company's customized planning calendars are their &quot;bread and butter&quot; product. School Datebooks was the first to do these full-blown custom datebooks with school-specific events, rules and other information, while most competitors still do generic products. The school year calendars display as two week spreads, in addition to other content such as rules and regulations, dress codes, maps, or information geared to special groups like freshman classes or athletes. </p> <p>&quot;The book market is a priority for Océ, and we've developed a complete portfolio of digital printing and workflow solutions for the widest range of publishing opportunities. Our customers can quickly transform book production to a higher level of performance and efficiency. For School Datebooks, the Océ VarioStream solution lets them take advantage of digital production over offset. For other customers, the Océ JetStream<sup>®</sup> family, Océ CS 10000 production power, or the Océ VarioPrint<sup>®</sup> 6000 Ultra cutsheet line might be the best fit, along with Océ PRISMA<sup>®</sup> workflow software for book automation. And all are backed by our outstanding service teams,&quot; said Francis McMahon, Vice President, Marketing, Océ North America, Production Printing Systems. </p> <!--break--> <p><b>Huge Volume Increase Over Previous Years</b></p> <p>The School Datebooks annual production schedule hinges on a very tight window of opportunity. There is a ten-week turn time from getting each school's information, doing layout and design, proofing, and then printing. &quot;During our core eight weeks, we averaged over four million impressions per week, with a maximum week of almost five million. These are numbers that I would not have assumed even in a best case scenario,” said Vice President of Production, Jeff Bapst. </p> <p>&quot;As productive as we were last year, this year we saw a substantial improvement. From April through August, we eclipsed 50 million impressions (25 million feet of paper) on our engines. This was nearly an 18 percent improvement over the same period last year, and a 68 percent improvement over 2008, when the books were outsourced,&quot; said Bapst. The new Océ machine was a huge part of a successful strategy to bring the work in house. </p> <p><b>Océ Service Makes Critical Difference in Meeting Goals</b></p> <p>&quot;A lot of hard work and improved efficiencies went into this increase, but the level of Océ service was a huge factor in this success. Océ brought a sense of urgency and accountability that we don't normally see from a service team. They considered themselves part of our team, which is rare from a services perspective, and they were concerned with our numbers, goals and satisfaction throughout the season. They understood we had to keep running and used discretion to schedule maintenance and downtime,&quot; Bapst said. &quot;The overall yearly success of School Datebooks relies heavily on the performance of this production operation. The level of Océ service and response that we receive over this period is crucial to that success.&quot; </p> <p><b>Taking Every Advantage of Digital Printing</b></p> <p>The tight opportunity window has more to do with capturing a cost advantage than compressing production schedules. Jobs that run on the Océ equipment are the most efficient and profitable, so the company wants to put as much work as possible on the digital system. </p> <p>&quot;We have a window to get as much off this machine as we can,&quot; said Bapst. &quot;We try to run 24/7 until mid-August, and whatever doesn't get on the digital machine is a missed opportunity, because we pay more for what we run on offset. So if we miss an opportunity for printing on the Océ machine, there's no making it up. We want to operate our Océ VarioStream 8650 printer a minimum of 24/6 and usually aim for 24/7.&quot; </p> <p><b>Economics Drive Jobs from Offset to Digital</b></p> <p>The average datebook runs 144 to 160 pages, with some as small as 48, and others as big as 264 pages. The polyethylene-covered books are typically finished with double wire roll binding. &quot;Until we had Océ, everything mostly printed offset. With printing schedules and making plates, it's hard to pick up much time at that point, and we had to allow two weeks to print. Now with Océ in the mix, we can print a job as soon as it is ready and have it to bindery the next day,&quot; Bapst explained. </p> <p>&quot;Our average run on the Océ VarioStream printer is about 750 units per job, and when you look at all the expenses, for digital compared to offset, the pricing difference is significant. The Océ VarioStream 8650 printer, in conjunction with its reliable service staff, have enabled School Datebooks to become more competitive from a pricing perspective,&quot; said Bapst. </p> <p><i>[Note to editor – A photo is available. Contact Carro Weston at carrof@earthlink.net or 859-771-5091.] </i></p>