Because inserts remain popular, Fr. Ant. Niedermayr in Regensburg, Bavaria, invested in a second high-performance inserting system from Muller Martini five years after the first FlexLiner went into operation.
"Our insert volumes are increasing, while the time windows are constantly getting shorter due to customers' demands for up-to-the-minute information." Michael Kretschmann's answer to the question of why Fr. Ant. Niedermayr added a twin press of the same type with two main products and four inserts to the FlexLiner installed in 2016 with two main products and six inserts plus card gluer last summer is short and dry.
Popular inserts – tight deadline windows
The reason why inserts continue to enjoy unbroken popularity – apart from a brief dip during the corona lockdown – is immediately apparent to the head of the Postpress Department. "After all, I'm just another consumer who – like my wife, by the way – doesn't want to read sales information on a small cell phone, but in compact, tactile form on paper. Weekly offers catch your eye much better that way."
And as far as tight time frames are concerned, Michael Kretschmann gives an example: "We get the data at 2 p.m. on Friday. From 10 p.m., the main products go onto one or both FlexLiners and are loaded with the inserts, which are also all printed in-house. On Tuesday, 3 p.m., all products are delivered."
Specialty of the house: inserts in inserts
Main products – these are jacket products into which other brochures, flyers or individual sheets are then inserted. Because the company, which was founded in 1801 and employs 240 people on a 7/24 basis, Fr. Ant. Niedermayr, which has also had a Primera 160 saddle stitcher from Muller Martini since 2014, specializes in inserts within inserts. These are inserted into newspapers, dropped into mailboxes or placed in supermarkets. For example, a discounter has 1,000 stores for which it needs the same main product but different inserts – selective inserting at its best.
The Connex Mailroom workflow system
ensures that the right inserts go into the right jacket product. "It's a tool that's as complete as it is indispensable and meets all requirements in terms of control and logging," says Michael Kretschmann. "Fifteen years ago, we needed a toolbox for changeover and got oil-smeared hands and arms. Today, thanks to Connex, retooling is simple and clear via touchscreen. We can make adjustments on the fly – without wrenches."
Michael Kretschmann (left), Head of Postpress at Fr. Ant. Niedermayr: "The FlexLiner is reliable, ensures excellent quality of the insert sets and impresses with a high degree of flexibility with regard to a wide range of products." On the right, Frank Skorna, Area Sales Manager Muller Martini Germany.
High flexibility for a wide range of products
According to Michael Kretschmann, the FlexLiner, which always runs at the maximum speed of 30,000 cycles per hour thanks to optimal interaction between man and machine, plays out several advantages for this form of production. "It is reliable, ensures excellent quality of the insert sets and impresses with a high degree of flexibility with regard to a wide variety of products – whether these are thin paper, single sheets of 90-gram paper or 32-pages."
Thanks to the second inserting system, Fr. Ant. Niedermayr can now serve its customers, 80 percent of whom come from Germany and 20 percent from Austria, France, the Czech Republic and Switzerland – discounters, DIY stores, furniture stores and electronics stores – even more up to date. Secondly, having previously also placed orders with external partners, everything can now be manufactured in-house – "which saves time-consuming truck trips" (Michael Kretschmann). And thirdly, "as a pleasant side effect, the new FlexLiner also serves as a buffer, because when it comes to keeping our production up to date, we're not talking about days, but hours!"
To ensure that the two inserting lines run reliably at all times, they are each serviced by in-house technicians after the peak days from Friday to Tuesday. In addition, the Regensburg-based company, which prints 350 tons of paper on peak days, calls on Muller Martini's MMServices program twice a year.