Links Labels & Tapes responds to a market need for shorter lead times by investing in Screen’s Truepress SAI S 5-colour

First SCREEN Truepress JET SAI S 5-colour sold in the UK instantly provides accurate colour matching, exceptional colour consistency and shortens lead times for specialist labels printer Links Labels & Tapes.

When UK label manufacturer and printer Links Labels & Tapes was under pressure to deliver more print jobs quicker, it chose the Screen Truepress Jet L350UV SAI S 5-colour. The new machine, the first of this type sold in the UK, provides the colour consistency, and print speed now required to meet its customers’ expectations.

When choosing the best technology to invest in, Links Labels & Tapes ran extensive tests with a variety of inkjet press providers. The Screen Truepress SAI S 5-colour came out as the winner “because labels printed on this machine look flatter and vibrant”, says Darren Dutton, Managing Director. “We are proud of our reputation and don’t accept anything less than top quality labels. Initially, we didn’t think inkjet could meet our quality standards. However, we found that the SCREEN Truepress JET SAI S 5 colour does. It brings inkjet print quality to the level of flexo printing.”

Consistent colour and speed

Screen introduced its SAI technology in 2020. The Japanese word ‘SAI’ stands for colourful. The SAI technology builds on the technology of Screen’s successful Truepress Jet L350UV and L350UV+ digital label printer series. The SAI S 5-colour ensures colour consistency during and between different print runs, while printing at consistently high speeds. “With the Screen SAI S 5-colour, we no longer need to manually adjust colours. Automation of colour management greatly speeds up the printing process. It can maintain print speeds of 60 metres per minute and doesn’t get slower when you increase the number of colours used”, says Darren, adding that the Truepress JET SAI S 5-colour technology is modular and can be updated to include up to eight print heads to expand its colour range.

With these faster speeds, the Truepress JET SAI S 5-colour significantly shortens Links Labels & Tapes’ lead times. “This is exactly what we need, because, in line with the market trend, we receive print orders for relatively small quantities more frequently. This machine is especially well-suited for this situation as it handles print jobs of up to 10,000 metres fast and reliably, with a high uptime. The Truepress JET SAI S 5-colour enables us to process most assignments in 2-3 days – a significant improvement compared to 5-7 days previously,” says Darren, adding that “customers’ requirements are increasingly pushing us toward digital.”

More than 40 million COVID-test labels

The quality and speed of the SAI printer was crucial for Links Labels & Tapes during the coronavirus pandemic, when it received a large number of print orders for COVID-related medical labels for hospitals and COVID testing labels. By year-end, the company had printed more than 40 million labels for the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) and this high demand continues in 2021.

Links Labels & Tapes prides itself on decades of printing experience, enjoying consistent growth. The company expects its growth to continue, building on a reputation for response, creativity and an ability to produce technically challenging labels delivered on time and to various market sectors.

“The expansion of our digital printing capacity supports our growth and will help us attract new business,” says Darren who has been with the company since 1989.