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Star Media Group in Malaysia: Ferag technology makes inserting faster and more flexible

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Star Media Group in Malaysia: Ferag technology makes inserting faster and more flexible

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03.05.2018 – Star Media Group, Malaysia's leading media company, is a very forward-looking enterprise. With its latest investment in Ferag technology for the mailroom, Star Media is keeping plenty of options open for the future.

Star Media Group Berhad’s flagship product is The Star: 250,000 copies are printed daily, making it Malaysia’s highest-circulation English-language newspaper. The Group has been producing its newspapers at two modern printing plants in Shah Alam near the capital Kuala Lumpur and Bayan Lepas on the island of Penang since 2002 and 2003 respectively. Two years ago, Star Media Group Berhad decided to invest in new inserting and bundling technology. In Ferag, Star Media found a partner to supply high-performance technology for the daily newspapers and to support the company in opening up promising markets for print products.

Total product volume up to 400 pages
The Shah Alam printing plant needed inserting technology capable of processing up to 270,000 newspapers daily, with a volume as high as 400 tabloid pages (395 × 290 mm): up to 96 pages for the main product, three preprinted sections with 72-96 pages, plus three commercial advertising inserts. Moreover this volume had to be produced within a maximum of three hours. Shah Alam ended up investing in two MSD (MultiSertDrum) inserting drums with capacity for up to 45,000 copies/h, each connected to RollStream precollecting systems with two JetFeeder hoppers apiece. The third line is grouped around an EasySert collection and inserting line with TapeFix (max. 30,000 copies) to form stable layers of advertising brochures without a separate jacket. The UTR paced conveyor feeds six MultiStack compensating stackers with topsheet printing and application stations. The combination of EasySert and MSD technology will open up many future opportunities for Star Media Group. An EasySert system with FlyStream and JetFeeders was also installed in Penang. It has capacity for up to 30,000 copies/h and comprises three MultiStack compensating stackers linked to the UTR paced conveyor.

Installation under conditions of full production load
Although Ferag technology has replaced a previous inserting system, another manufacturer’s pre-existing upstream transport and collection system remains in place and was connected with the new Ferag lines to the customer’s satisfaction. Ferag even developed a special LAT batch pacer for the purpose. Of this, Mohamed Hassan bin Mohamed Ali, Senior General Manager, Technical Services of Star Media Group says: “Ferag implemented everything as promised and we are particularly pleased with the flawlessly functioning transfers to existing technology. Our doubts as to whether the new Ferag technology would integrate well with these systems have been completely dispelled.” The installation had to be carried out under conditions of full production load – not always an easy task for the flexible Ferag team working under the supervision of Karl Büchel. Cooperation between Ferag and Star Media employees was very good, thanks to extensive training held at Ferag headquarters in advance of the installation. The training in Hinwil made it easier for the customer’s staff to quickly start running production by themselves. There were also training courses dedicated to making optimum use of the wide-ranging technical possibilities available. Senior General Manager Mohamed Hassan bin Mohamed Ali said: “The people from Ferag gave us good support and we have already seen significant improvements to productivity and efficiency.”

Potential for further benefits
The Shah Alam project was wrapped up in the summer of 2017 and Ferag technology has been demonstrating its advantages ever since then. For example, the MultiSertDrum adds flexibility to allocating inserts: the main product can be opened for a second time, enabling more specific positioning of the inserts. A Memostick applicator and inkjet heads are available for additional benefits and applications beyond the daily newspaper. Ferag Navigator software is also in operation, controlling the production run including the generation of top sheets. Mohamed Hassan bin Mohamed Ali concludes: “We are completely satisfied with the technology’s efficiency in our daily production. What’s more, the inserting lines open up new sources of revenue for us. Our advertising and production teams are working to create new products for customers and agencies.”

Mailroom Shah Alam:

Mailroom Penang:


Michael Spinner-Just's picture

Michael Spinner-Just


2018-05-07 12:06

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