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Xavier Armengou, director general de Roland DG Iberia

Founded in 1981, Roland DG is a leader in digital printing solutions. Its inkjet printers, printer/cutters and cutting equipment are used to create a wide range of promotional items, as well as to offer personalisation services for garments and personal items. We spoke to Xavier Armengou, general manager of Roland DG Iberia, about the company’s new projects and the innovations that will be presented at the next edition of Graphispag, which will take place from 24 to 27 May at the Gran Vía exhibition centre coinciding with Hispack.

We are leaving behind a difficult few months due to the crisis generated by the pandemic, has Roland DG changed its business strategy as a result of this changing environment?

The strategy has not changed, but the way we communicate has changed. At Roland DG, we always strive to be close to our customers, and during the pandemic, too. The new environment has accelerated certain planned activities and we have boosted online communication with our customers and partners, with training and webinars, product presentations, online events and trade fairs, etc. We also opened the doors of our Creative Centres to be close to our customers and show the latest news in a secure and personalised way.

What role does innovation play in creating products and services tailored to customers’ needs?

Innovation has always been one of Roland DG’s main pillars in the development process of new products. We implement enhancements to our technology with our customers and their needs in mind to help them drive their businesses forward. Over the last few years, we have maintained a close relationship with our team in Japan in order to share these needs and assess their potential. The co-creation process is essential to offer flexible solutions that adapt to market demands.

For Roland DG it is essential to offer products and services designed to meet the needs of users: improve their efficiency, optimise their production quality, increase their productivity, expand their offerings and much more.

TrueVis SG3. Image courtesy of Roland DG.

What innovations will you be presenting at the trade fair?

Roland DG will present the third generation of the TrueVIS Series printer/cutters, including the VG3-640/ and SG3-540/30 models. The new additions to the popular TrueVIS range are the latest generation of eco-solvent large format printer/cutters.

These printers have been designed with print professionals in mind, specialising in sign making, signage and personalisation services.

In addition, visitors will also be able to discover the latest equipment recently launched on the market, such as the VersaUV LEC2 Series UV-LED printer/cutters, which offer exceptional UV print quality, accurate colour reproduction and precise cutting for users who demand absolute perfection. Also on the Roland stand will be the VersaUV LEC2 Series UV flatbed printer, the Texart XT-640S-F direct-to-garment printer and the IU-1000F large-format UV printer.

With which sectors do you have the highest turnover?

Traditionally, the signage and visual communication sectors have been the ones with which we have had the greatest impact and trajectory. However, we are increasingly immersed in new markets where digital printing is becoming more important, such as the textile, personalisation and industrial sectors.

You have extensive experience in textile printing. Is it possible to talk about new trends and/or current fashions?

Over the last decades, the textile and fashion industry has radically shifted towards digital transformation to offer more environmentally responsible and sustainable production processes for the planet. Today, textile manufacturers are opting for shorter and more personalised print runs, with customers in mind.

Moreover, in recent years, the need for short runs with faster delivery times has led to “textile relocation”, bringing production back to Spain and Europe. Recent advances in digital printing technology have facilitated the production process, making it more agile and flexible and offering shorter lead times.

Roland DG is helping to drive these trends with our new solutions for the textile industry. One of the pieces of equipment that is revolutionising the sector is the Texart XT-640S-DTG/ XT-640S-F, a short-run textile printer, ideal for limited edition collections and prototypes. The Texart XT-640S-F can print on a wide variety of fabrics, such as cotton, high percentage cotton blends, white polyester, denim and leather. Its configuration of CYMK and high density white offers vivid printing on white and coloured garments. Thanks to an excellent washing result and the ECO PASSPORT certification by OEKO-TEX®, it is also a high-quality and environmentally friendly solution that offers long-lasting results.

As a leading manufacturer of large format printers and printer/cutters, what importance do you place on customisation capabilities?

Personalisation is the alma mater of the company, we create specific equipment for personalisation in which quality is paramount to achieve the best result.

We are living in a period when product customisation is booming. Worldwide, in the midst of the Covid-19 crisis, the global market for personalised gifts was estimated at 22 million euros, and is expected to reach 37 million euros by 2027. Given this context, it is vital that companies increasingly offer tailored and personalised products to their customers.

What do your customers demand most? Have you noticed any changes in the last two years?

Our customers demand technology that offers maximum versatility and customisation, is easy to use and integrates everything they need, including software and technical support.

What challenges do you see facing the sector in the coming years?

The main challenges for the future of the sector are to recover after these years, to adapt to recent changes, to continue to offer what customers need, to offer more sustainable solutions that have a lower impact on the environment, and to reduce the carbon footprint. Roland DG is already working to meet and exceed these challenges.

What does attending a trade fair like Graphispag mean to you?

After two years of changes caused by the pandemic, Graphispag is the ideal place to showcase the latest developments and trends in the industry and to meet our customers and other experts again.

The last few years have been full of new challenges and we look forward to showcasing our renewed portfolio live to our customers and offering them new solutions to help them prepare for the upcoming changes.

This trade fair will reflect the evolution of the market and the different sectors and will be the showcase for the consolidation of new strategic lines for Roland DG, such as our commitment to vertical markets, such as textiles, industrial, retail, personalisation and interior decoration, among others. In addition, visitors to Hispack will also be able to see Roland DG’s solutions for the packaging and label industry.

At Graphispag 2022 there will be no shortage of new solutions, applications and technologies aimed at meeting the needs of entirely new market niches.

Cristina Benavides, Graphispag contributor