STIXO-Signage Supplies

Solimar Systems Receives Award For Print Solutions

Keypoint Intelligence has awarded Solimar Systems’ ReadyPDF platform with a Buyers Lab Outstanding Innovation award in Production Print. 

Winners were chosen by Keypoint Intelligence’s independent panel of print production analysts based on their ability to ‘improve output quality, enhance productivity, deliver workflow efficiencies, impact sustainability and advance their product segments in meaningful ways.’

ReadyPDF is designed to overcome the challenges customers encounter with many RIP systems: to fully optimise PDF files for print and digital delivery or archive and to simplify integration into existing workflows, providing dramatic advantages for the end-user.

Brian Cox, Senior Director of Software Development and BCS Architecture at RR Donnelley, Solimar Advisory Council member stated, ‘RR Donnelley has been a long-time enterprise customer of the Solimar Chemistry platform for print file conversions and post-composition enhancements. ReadyPDF is now benefiting us in our pre-press processes as we clean up and improve PDF files prior to production.’

The reasons ReadyPDF was presented the Outstanding ‘Achievement in Innovation: Production Printing’ Award by KPI included:

PDF file size reduction up to 14 times, as illustrated in lab testing at KPI earlier this year. ReadyPDF provides a cost-effective measure, ensuring that the digital front ends or DFEs of high-speed digital presses can process data to keep them running at optimal press speeds.

Increased automation, including automated PDF inspection and correction, enables printers to automate onboarding of production work, without the requirement for manual intervention. With streamlined PDF file complexity, ReadyPDF optimises resources and fixes structural issues within PDF files so they process more efficiently.

Mary Ann Rowan, Chief Experience Officer, Solimar Systems, commented, ‘We are very grateful for the recognition by Keypoint Intelligence. Solimar Systems has been delivering PDF infrastructure for printing and digital use for more than two decades. ReadyPDF fills an important technology gap for high volume personalised content processing and complements our other PDF-centric workflow solutions in our Chemistry platform.’


Fisher Textiles Introduces Printable Fabric Line

Fisher Textiles’ new printable fabric line is long-lasting and suitable for soft textile applications including: throw pillows, window treatments, table linens, upholstery, bedding linens, shower curtains and bath towels, wall art including canvas gallery wraps and wallpaper, and floor décor including rugs and mats.

The durable fabric line for home furnishing applications is ideal for interior and exterior home décor. All are either 100% Polyester or Poly blends, stocked in a variety of textures and weights.

Fisher Textiles Introduces Printable Fabric Line
Baby blanket printed on Fisher Textiles’ 5900 Plush Flannel Blanket-On-Demand.

Blankets-On-Demand, a subcategory of this fabric line, includes fully finished plush flannel and polar fleece blankets available in three sizes for sublimation printing. The finishing is a self-edge folded/bordered edge with a twin needle cover seam. These soft and cosy blankets are perfect for personalised throw blankets, baby milestone blankets and promotional blankets.


EFI Reggiani Reports Multiple Sales In Textile Printing Solutions For Russian Market

EFI Reggiani works closely with partners, such as its partner in Russia, Nissa Distribution. Customers, including many of the world’s leading textile manufacturers, benefit from high efficiency in their manufacturing process, optimised productivity, reduced energy and water costs, and a reduced environmental impact.

EFI Reggiani together with Nissa have completed three new sales contracts for the supply and installation of industrial solutions for direct-to-fabric and sublimation industrial textile printing. The new sales bring EFI Reggiani’s productive and sustainable digital solutions to three leading Russian textile producers: D-TEX Digital Textile Printing, MIRtex and Sima-Land.

Having more than 70 years of experience and competence developing textile technologies and machinery, EFI Reggiani is a world leader in the implementation of innovative solutions. The EFI Reggiani product portfolio includes the Reggiani and Mezzera brands – a broad range of solutions for textile manufacturing. EFI Reggiani has had a long-lasting presence in Russia, serving key customers with digital printers using water-based inks, analogue printers, and pre and post-treatment equipment. EFI Reggiani has further enhanced its presence with Nissa Distribution.

The network of EFI Reggiani agent partners, technical specialists and service engineers worldwide provides customers with high-quality service and effective before and after-sales support, while also offering consultations on effective technology use.

EFI Reggiani’s success in the Russian market comes from well-coordinated, concerted efforts with Nissa Distribution and its subsidiary Nissa Stensart, ensuring full sales and technical support for customers. The most recent results of EFI Reggiani’s activities with Nissa Distribution and Nissa Stensart are the finalisation of three contracts for EFI Reggiani POWER and EFI Reggiani NEXT digital textile printers.

Russia’s first EFI Reggiani POWER 180 and POWER 240 digital printers were recently sold to D-TEX Digital Textile Printing and to MIRtex. The companies, which print and manufacture products using natural fibres and knitwear, are among the largest comprehensive textile manufacturers serving Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

The EFI Reggiani POWER 180 and POWER 240 are industrial digital printing machines for direct printing on fabric, knitwear and textiles in widths of 1.8 and 2.4 metres respectively. They are equipped with a high-precision continuous transportation belt for reliable, accurate fabric feeding without wrinkles. Both machines can use EFI Reggiani’s water-based, eco-friendly inks, including popular EFI Reggiani BDR Diamond reactive inks.

EFI Reggiani POWER printers combine unparalleled reliability from EFI Reggiani’s long history of manufacturing excellence with new cutting-edge innovations that make production faster, smoother and more efficient. The printers’ ink recirculation system and electronics make the POWER line the top seller in its category worldwide. With EFI Reggiani POWER printers, users benefit from:
• Superior versatility to manage a wider variety of inks.
• Dramatic reduction in maintenance needs and stoppages.
• Increased tolerance to environmental conditions.

Russia’s first EFI Reggiani NEXT 340 printer is being installed at the largest wholesale textile company in Russia, Sima-Land. The Yekaterinburg-based company offers more than one million different products, including décor textiles for the home and office and men’s, women’s and children’s clothing.

The EFI Reggiani NEXT 340 is a 3.4 metre-wide, beltless industrial digital printing machine for direct and sublimation printing. Sima-Land’s printer is equipped with four Kyocera® industrial printheads and will give the wholesaler productivity running in a CMYK x 2 configuration or in an eight-colour configuration for superior quality. Using eco-friendly, water-based EFI Reggiani IRIS inks will give Sima-Land the ability to print bright vivid shades and colours and ensure an extraordinary level of print durability.

The Reggiani NEXT printer is the digital solution for sublimation printing on paper and non-elastic fabrics, designed to revolutionise fashion, sportswear and home décor markets with its combination of cost-saving features, speed and quality. Reggiani NEXT users worldwide benefit from reliable, industrial printing with a limited initial investment on a printer offering exceptional ease of use and the lowest cost per metre production in its category.

Nissa Distribution will handle future technical service and maintenance of the new printers sold to D-TEX, MIRtex and Sima-Land, as well as supply spare parts and consumables.

‘We are very excited about the success working with Nissa Distribution and Nissa Stensart to grow EFI Reggiani’s presence in the important Russian market,’ said EFI Reggiani Senior Vice President and General Manager Adele Genoni. ‘The installation of high-performance EFI Reggiani industrial digital textile printers at three of the largest textile companies in Russia, and the ability to help these customers grow in the midst of a pandemic, reflect the serious commitment EFI Reggiani and our partners have in helping customers thrive and grow with efficient, productive and green digital printing solutions.’

In the future, EFI Reggiani, Nissa Distribution and Nissa Stensart will continue to collaborate to reinforce their joint, effective efforts to provide customers with the highest level of support and technical assistance, furthering promotion of EFI Reggiani digital printing solutions in Russia and the CIS.


First Anti-Bacterial Phone Ideal For Demanding Signage Environments

Every exterior component of the Cat® S42 has been treated with Biomaster® antimicrobial technology and tested to ISO 22196. Based on the inclusion of silver ions during manufacturing, the process creates a permanent level of product protection, inhibiting the growth of microbes on the phone surface and therefore reducing microbial levels on the surface.

The Cat® range of rugged smart and feature phones are designed to challenge expectations of what a phone can and should do. They are ideal for more demanding work environments, such as signage, printing, rigging and manufacturing. Every external surface of the Cat® S42 has been enhanced with advanced antimicrobial product protection, making it the first anti-bacterial phone.

Research shows that our phones are home to thousands of germs, with one University of Michigan study finding in excess of 17,000 bacteria on handsets (1). We interact with our mobile devices many times a day – around 47 times, on average, according to research from Deloitte (2). Furthermore, researchers at CSIRO, Australia’s national science agency, have found that SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for Covid-19, can survive for up to 28 days on common surfaces including banknotes, glass (such as that found on mobile phone screens) and stainless steel (3).

Mobile phones are handled and pressed to our faces, meaning that any bacteria or other microorganisms can easily transfer back and forth between the hard surfaces of your phone and your skin.

The Biomaster® active antimicrobial agent is proven to inhibit bacteria cells from replicating, in testing a reduction of over 80% within 15 minutes was shown and 99.9% within 24 hours. Combined with the existing Cat® phone rugged credentials that ensure the device can be thoroughly and regularly washed with soaps and water, sanitisers, and even bleach, the Cat® S42 represents the next generation of hygienic product protection in smartphone design.

The Biomaster®-treated Cat® S42 will be available from early 2021, with the treatment coming to other devices in the Cat® phones range later in the year.

Tested to Cat® phones’ demanding rugged standards, the Cat® S42 features MIL SPEC 810H and IP68 and IP69 ratings, and surpasses their rigourous and repeated drop testing from 1.8m onto steel, including multiple drops onto every side and corner. It’s fully waterproof, tested submerged in water at depths up to 1.5m for 35 minutes. Like all Cat® smartphones in the range, it is also put through vibration and tumble tests, salt mist conditions, and it’s built to operate in high and low extremes of temperature and to survive thermal shocks. Take it with you anywhere and everywhere. It’s built tough to help you thrive in challenging outdoor work situations and extreme leisure pursuits alike.

Cat S42 anti-bacterial phone

Key Specifications:

• Powerful 4200mAh battery.

• Water/dust proof (IP68, IP69), Drop tested to 1.8m onto steel, MIL SPEC 810H, Corning® Gorilla® Glass 5.

• Waterproof smartphone – up to 1.5m for 35 minutes.

• 5.5″ HD+ 18 x 9 display optimised for outdoor use with a touchscreen that can be used with wet fingers or when wearing gloves.

• Android™ 10 (with upgrade to 11).

• 3GB RAM, 32GB ROM, Expandable Storage (microSD™).

• Mediatek Helio A20 MT 6761D chipset, 1.8GHz quad-core processor.

• 13MP rear camera, 5MP front camera.

• LTE Cat 6, VoLTE, VoWiFi.

• Textured, extra grip design.

• Programmable Shortcut Key useful for Push to Talk (PTT), SOS (Lone worker app), or to easily launch its torch or camera.

• Bluetooth 5.0, NFC.

• 3.5mm audio jack (waterproof).

• Curated apps and content catalogue.

• Dual SIM – Nano SIM + microSD™.

• Android Enterprise support.

• Security updates cover for 3 years.

• Zero-touch support.

True to their innovative manufacturing, Bullitt Group, the manufacturer of Cat® phones, has won the Ruggedised Manufacturer of the Year category in the Mobile Industry 2020 Awards. Running for more than a decade, the Mobile Industry Awards represent the gold standard of excellence in the industry.


(1) Kõljalg, Siiri et al., University of Michigan School of Public Health, “High level bacterial contamination of secondary school students’ mobile phones.” Germs vol. 7,2 73-77. (2017)

(2) ‘Connectivity and Mobile Trends Survey’ (2019), Deloitte

(3) CSIRO:

CAT Phones


A Step-By-Step Guide To Creating Service Culture

John Tschohl of the Service Quality Institute outlines six steps to creating a service culture, and discusses five critical elements for excellent service.

Most companies think they are in manufacturing and retail, but remember that you are in the service business. It is a paradigm switch. Amazon is successful because it understands it is a customer service company that just happens to be the largest internet-based retailer in the world.

Six steps to creating a service culture:

– Understand that you are in the service business. Starbucks is successful because they understand they are a customer service company that just happens to sell great coffee.

– Look at all the policies, procedures and systems you have in place that make life miserable for customers. You could have the nicest people in the world but also stupid hours, stupid rules or stupid procedures that irritate customers. Stupid policies, procedures and systems prevent customers from coming back.

– Have empowerment. Every employee must be able to make fast and powerful decisions on the spot, and they better be in favour of the customer.

– Be selective about whom you hire. Service leaders hire one out of 50 applicants, sometimes one out of 100, and they are very careful. You have to look for the cream, the A-players, instead of bringing on B and C-players.

– Educate and train the whole staff on the art of customer service with something new and fresh every four to six months. It does not matter if you have 100, 1000 or 10,000 employees, you better have something new and fresh constantly in front of them so when they go to work they say, ‘Fantastic, I am taking care of customers.’

– Measure the results financially so you know the impact customer service is making on revenue, on profit and on market share. You have to track the numbers so you understand that it is worth the time and effort.

It is likely that most successful businesses are doing some of these things already. But it is the commitment to following through on all six that establishes a great service culture.

Five critical elements necessary for excellent service:

First, you have to have speed. How do you shrink the time by 90 percent? Speed allows you to be different in the marketplace. It is not going from 10 hours to nine hours, it is how do you do it within the next few minutes. How do you take care of customers right while you are talking to them?

Secondly, it is important to empower employees. They have got to do whatever they have got to do, on the spot, so the customer walks out of the store or business, puts down the phone or leaves their computer after the interaction and thinks they have gone to heaven.

Thirdly, quality in whatever service or product you are selling is essential.

Fourth is service. Quality service is highly intangible. If you asked 100 customers to define it, there would be 100 different answers.

Finally, I stress the importance of using the customer’s name, remembering the customer and making each customer feel special. Take for instance Apple. I always have a great experience because they combine technology, speed, quality and service. They dominate because they understand how Service Culture works and they always call every customer by name. It is part of their procedure, part of their culture.

John Tschohl is a professional speaker, trainer, and consultant. He is the President and founder of Service Quality Institute with operations in over 40 countries. He is considered to be one of the foremost authorities on service strategy, success, empowerment and customer service.

John Tschohl

Vehicle Wrap Of The Week: Wrapformula

Sign Africa takes a weekly look at some of the most unique wraps. This week’s vehicle wrap features a Range Rover in a matte black wrap.

If you would like to feature in our weekly highlights, send your eye-catching wraps to


Summa Announces New Managing Director

Prior to joining Summa in April 2019 as CTO, Frederik Vervenne started his career at Barco in 1995 where he has held several management positions. From 2011 onwards, he held executive positions at Xeikon. With his background and experience, Vervenne is ready for the next challenge in his career as managing director of Summa NV.

Erwin Vandousselaere remains the Group CEO and will further focus on the strategic projects within the Summa Group, while continuing to play an active role in the development of Summa.

‘I am looking forward to take this position and lead the continued growth of our company. Summa has built up an excellent reputation in the market and is a recognised leader in cutting technology. By further expansion of our portfolio and geographical presence, we’ll improve our customer focus and business. So I am excited to develop further success for Summa’, said Vervenne.

Vandousselaere said, ‘We are confident with the appointment of Vervenne to MD. His experience in managing customer service, engineering, quality assurance and projects – combined with more than 25 years of operational experience in a hi-tech, customer-driven environment – guarantees the further growth of our business in the markets beyond these we already interact with.’

In recent years, Summa has developed strongly in the field of flatbed and laser cutting technology. With the appointment of the new Managing Director, Summa will build on further positioning its established roll cutter and flatbed cutter series while increasing brand awareness of the company in laser cutting solutions.


Hexis Announces Addition To Printable Films For Signage Projects

Hexis offer a major addition to its range of monomeric printable films: the TOR3001WG (Top Opacity Range). It is ideal for signage projects.

It features ideal whiteness and opacity (> 99%) as well as optimum printability. Due to its clear adhesive, this film can also be applied to a wide range of substrates. It is therefore a versatile high-opacity product, designed to optimise your inventory.

· Level of opacity is as high as for a film with grey adhesive.
· Glass and flat surfaces.
· Durability of the unprinted film: 4 years outdoors.
· Compatible with all inks (solvent, eco-solvent, latex and UV).

The Hexis Plus: protect your prints with V650 (with a matte or gloss finish) or V700 (with a matte, gloss or satin finish). For UV prints, use VCR650 (with a matte or gloss finish).


Metamark Digital Film Transforms Vehicle

Turner Signs created a wrapped van for its client using Metamark’s MetaCast MDC cast digital film.

PT Gas Services got itself a new van and decided that it could do a good job of advertising the company if it was fitted with a suitable livery. The team at Turner Signs has skills that trace to the days when paint and brush were the tools of the trade and the flip side of that coin is that the company sets itself extremely high standards when it comes to the use of type, the balance of layouts and the impact of the overall impression its work creates. What that means, in practical terms, is rather than simply ‘putting’ things on the side of vans, consideration is given to the way design leads the eye and the flow of a livery and its elements.

Turner Signs’ work for PT Gas Services is an example of what happens when today’s materials and production technologies meet a traditional attitude to quality and design. The design simply flows over the flanks of the vehicle, softening its panel junctions and imparting a more dynamic feel to the chunky proportions of the van. The colours do their job too, raising the temperature where needed and bringing an emphasis through contrast to the simple branding. Curt Turner and the team at Turner Signs used MetaCast MDC for its work and the film is protected from all that will come its way by a layer of MGC Laminate.


AXYZ Announces Innovator Router For Sign And Graphics Shops

The AXYZ Innovator is available in two standard sizes: 1.2m x 1.2m and 1.5m x 2.4m, with a gantry clearance of 152mm. Compact in size, the machine is powerful enough to cut aluminium, plastics and hardwoods, creating higher quality finishes and short lead times. It is ideal for sign and graphics shops as it easily processes 2D/3D signs in woods, metals and plastics.

This entry-level industrial CNC router replaces the legacy Z-Series model, offering a significant increase in performance while including a robust construction and high precision accuracy.

Popular industries and benefits:

– Educational institutions – a new curriculum option is offered for basic CNC training.
– Prototyping shops – takes the guesswork out of projects with simple prototyping jobs.
– Woodworking shops – versatile enough to fabricate all types of wood for furniture, shopfitting, scenery production and more.

The Innovator has been engineered to include the following new features:

– A heavy-duty frame with cast gantry legs for added rigidity.
– Integrated servo motors replacing stepper servos for smoother motion and higher speeds.
– Premium helical racks offering a new level of cut quality.
– Designed to be more easily upgradable for option installations in the future.

AXYZ Announces Innovator Router To Line-Up Of CNC Machines

The Innovator comes standard with option-ready installation packages so users can grow the machine along with their business. The exclusive three position tool changer, available for the first time for all Innovator machines, saves valuable time by keeping the machine running continuously without the need for operator input. At the same time, the automated cover protects the toolholders from getting contaminated, reducing maintenance and downtime.


Open chat