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FIVE-METER-WIDE SUBLIMATION PRINTING IN PRACTICE

“The biggest sublimation printer in the world is at Van Straaten.” It's a headline that's been going around the world these last few weeks. Van Straaten has recently become the very first owner of the new Durst Rhotex 500 sublimation printer. This XL sublimation printer was showcased at the FESPA trade fair in Amsterdam this March. Our production lines are currently being outfitted for the first creations to be printed. Make no bones about it, the Rhotex 500 is big. A unique trade that naturally draws attention, but what does this development mean for stand construction, interior design, events and retail?

LEAN: GREATER EFFICIENCY IN MANUFACTURING AND PROCESSING

Leaner, meaner and greener operating procedures are what the Durst Rhotex 500 is all about. As such, this new innovation is going to have a major impact on the world of visual communication, and in more ways than one. Firstly, in terms of lean. This trend aims at maximizing levels of customer satisfaction through greater efficiency. With this new printing technology, Van Straaten is striving towards this goal, combining all the wishes of the marketplace into one single innovation. A sublimated fabric, which can be folded rather than rolled, is less voluminous and therefore takes up less space. This means increased convenience and functionality both in terms of transport, use on location and in stand build-up and break-down. Enormous visuals are suitable for almost every customer. To this end, we are giving customers exactly what they want: greater efficiency, without having to make any concessions whatsoever to quality or format.

MEAN: A VISUAL SPECTACLE

The latest trend for stand builders, marketers, designers, retailers and the like is big, bigger, biggest. Not so much because size is size is the goal, it is rather the means. These days, organizations aim to make an indelible impact with their visual communication. In fact, being able to stand out from the competition – who are likewise loath to let the grass grow under their feet – is an absolute must. High-resolution, large-format print definitely has the wow factor. With it, stand builders are giving themselves a USP when it comes to display materials, which are sleeker and more impressive than ever before.

GREEN: GREATER SUSTAINABILITY

Lastly: green. This symbolizes the sustainable character of sublimation printing techniques, which use water-based inks. This means that the final product is completely odor-free: a big bonus on the exhibition stand or when used in confined spaces. These inks pose no risk to the environment. Fabrics used by Van Straaten for sublimation printing have been Reach-certified and are free of any heavy metals and PVC. Last but not least, the fabrics can be recycled, thus reducing the carbon footprint significantly. It is because of these sustainability benefits that sublimation printing is gaining in popularity. For more and more of our customers, sustainable operations have become a key business goal. Van Straaten has been adapting its operations to meet these targets, the current highlight being five-meter-wide sublimation printing.

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JOHN FAAS

COMMERCIAL MANAGER

“There is only one boss. The customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.”

Sam Walton, Founder of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.