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Leach doubles print capacity with Durst Rhotex 325 investment

Leach, the project management specialist in graphic displays and display structures, has invested in a new Durst Rhotex 325 printer that has doubled the capacity of its UK factory to a 500m² per hour print rate.

At 6.5m wide x 4.5m deep, this industry-leading dye sublimation innovation produces large format graphics up to 3m wide and of any roll length. Capable of printing onto an array of materials using water-based ink, it will also widen the project briefs that Leach is able to satisfy, and is particularly important for frontlit work.

With a suite of printers within the 30,000sqm factory, Leach can now manufacture both indoor and outdoor graphics, solutions ideal for both warmer and colder climates, reusable products, as well as graphics for technologically challenging shapes, structures and specifications.

James Lavin, Managing Director of Leach, based in Huddersfield, Yorkshire, said: “As demand from the retail, exhibition and heritage sectors continues to rise, we are passionate about being able to help more clients, as quickly as we can, without any detriment to quality. The addition of this cutting-edge equipment means that we now have technology capable of satisfying virtually any print brief, regardless of budget, environmental agendas, lighting specification and material preferences.”

The printer procurement process began six months ago. With other Durst machines already in-situ within Leach’s factory, the company was perhaps an obvious choice. But rigorous due diligence included a site visit to Durst’s headquarters and production facility in Brixen, northern Italy.

“Durst is a great partner and has served us well,” said James Lavin. “It has a great reputation in the market for high end, high value products. It’s a company we align to and very much complements what we do. It was never realistically going to be anybody else. However, we had to be certain of the run rate and quality, and the only way to truly verify this was to see the Durst Rhotex 325 – and its rivals – in action. Now installed, the feedback from our customers is also that the print quality is fabulous.”

The Rhotex 325 from Durst, a manufacturer of advanced digital printing and production technology, is a dual-purpose system that can alternate between direct-to-textile and transfer printing, meaning maximum flexibility for Leach’s busy team moving forwards.

The company began life as a one-man photographic studio in 1891. Two years ago, Leach invested in the UK’s first Durst Rhotex 512R for UV ink printing on superwide graphics up to 5m. Last April, the 100-employee business was acquired by French-owned global manufacturing and services group Chargeurs. The plan is to double turnover to £20million within five years.

“Being part of global manufacturing and services group Chargeurs brings a lot of interesting contacts to us in many different countries, so we are extremely optimistic about the potential for international growth going forward,” said James Lavin.

Peter Bray, Managing Director of Durst UK and Ireland, said: “Our long-standing relationship with Leach goes back well over 20 years. This latest investment is another prime example of the trust and confidence put in Durst, a global company that continues to go from strength to strength.”