Winners 2014

Scroll across to view our 2014 winners and high commendations

Bespoke Digital Printer of the Year

Winner: 1st Byte 0844 815 9662

Every one, insisted the judges, was a winner: “Really impressed; these submissions debunk the myth that quality is digital’s Achilles’ heel.” 1st Byte, however, was first among equals with projects such as ABP (China) Royal Albert Dock marketing collateral for Savills. The client wanted 25 copies each of two books, one in English and one in Chinese, with 10 of them produced within 48 hours. The result was truly bespoke, with the client particularly happy with the raised varnish finish throughout the book applied using its new Scodix. Only the best team can harness the best results and 1st Byte needed no second bite to taste victory this year.

Highly commended:

Pureprint Group 01825 768811

Screaming Colour 020 7549 3400

Book Printer of the Year

Winner: Pureprint Group 01825768811

“The book has Swiss-watch precision,” was the client’s verdict on the 2,500 copies of Giacometti Without End. Judges, looking for high-quality printing, precision binding and impeccable finishing, were not disappointed in the printer. It has secured a hat trick of wins in this category. Pureprint delivered again with each of the 1,250 copies of the George Condo Book. Like the best book, a perfect production narrative has a beginning, middle and end: pre-press measures included colour correcting 16 painting images and their details; printing involved spot silk varnish over the images on 200gsm matt rounded off with a cloth wrapped hardcover foiled in black to ensure a thrilling end. Then came the epilogue: “An exceptionally good entry,” said the judges. “Outstanding submissions, good use of papers, lovely execution.”

Highly commended:

Push Print 020 7231 1166

Brochure Printer of the Year

Winner: Empress Litho 020 8316 6648

This category was no pushover. Judges heaped praise on the overall standard “but this particular one simply shone and showed simple things done well and complicated pieces produced beautifully”. Beaulieu House, one of the capital’s largest private residencies, was given the full gloss treatment from a publication with details as impressive as those of the grand architecture. Soft, smooth paper for the body and tactile, rough and understated end papers proved a perfect match, while reinforced lining crepe ensured the book block was securely held together. For the David M Robinson catalogue the repro and print had to be exceptional. Jewellery was divided into silver and gold batches, each batch carefully CMYK converted with localised retouching to enhance the gemstone colours.

Highly commended:

Hampton Printing (Bristol) 01275374466

Pureprint Group 01825768811

Catalogue Printer of the Year

Winner: Pindar (part of the YM Group) 01723 581581

It is fitting Pindar should secure its victory in this category with Confetti Celebrations. For the client’s Wedding Star catalogue the Scarborough printer successfully showed it was a master of the high-end retail catalogue and could offer paper savings thanks to its short-grain web press. And first to congratulate the printer were the judges: “The depth of colour in the Confetti catalogue was fantastic and the finishing was spot on.” And when it came to Sotheby’s brand reputation, the catalogue demanded the closest attention to detail, which Pindar clearly delivered. Meanwhile, the brief for Tesco’s 2014 Home Book, demanded a high-end, premium look and feel, which Pindar delivered on time and on budget. As a showcase of the supermarket’s wares, it’s hard to beat; as a showcase of
print skills, it was quite simply unbeatable, said the judges.

Highly commended:

Artisan Press 0116 235 5221

Company of the Year

Winner: Tradeprint 0800 975 5452

Investment in technology has been the keynote of a thumpingly good year for this “software company that happens to print”, whose lean manufacturing and automated processes mean 98% of work is processed completely automatically. Dundee-based Tradeprint not only performed well throughout the recession, but this year notched up a tidy pre-tax profit on a £9m turnover. The Judges said: “The consistent levels of turnover and profit growth would be impressive in any sector, but in the commodity- driven trade sector they’re truly spectacular.” Having grown sheet size from B3 to B2 to B1 and fully automated its processes, the firm is now gearing up for expansion into Europe.

Highly commended:

Buxton Press 01298 212000

Real Digital International 020 8603 7000

Cross-media Company of the Year

Winner: Eclipse Red 01536 486122

It was the personal touch that did it. Car dealer JCT600 asked Eclipse Red to produce a more personalised automated communication package. The company created a complete e-CRM journey, tailor-made for every customer, both when they were buying a new car and during the time they own that vehicle. Eclipse Red distributed targeted communications across web and mobile platforms, complemented with direct mail aftersales reminder letters and pre-service postcards. By ensuring customer data was consistent across platforms the team was able to not only personalise the communication with the customer’s details but brand them according to one of 15 makes of vehicle purchased. All this impressed the judges: “This demonstrated an end-to-end journey and gave insight to deliver customer retention and cross and upsell opportunities.”

Highly commended:

Prime Group 01623 499949

Customer Service Team of the Year

Winner: Amberley Adhesive Labels 01258 455772

The response from Estée Lauder says it all: “You guys are awesome. In 30 years of working in packaging, Amberley is the most powerful and creative label supplier I have ever worked with.” A training programme that began in 2013 has bulked up the knowledge base of print and conversion to ensure faster and better informed answers to customers and prospects on artwork and materials. It helps that half of the team has more than 20 years’ service. A recent landmark was Amberley’s decision to support all customers using electronic data interchange. Large orders that would previously take six hours to process are now completed and reviewed within 10 minutes. The team is now helping customers export data from their own systems to take away order input concerns. In this age of automated email responses, Amberley’s telephone system ensures customers can always talk to a human being, and prompted comments from the judges such as: “I liked the tailored approach to the client,
resulting in great feedback, reciprocal visits and true client partnerships.”

Highly commended:

Garnett Dickinson Print 01709 768000

Direct Mail Printer of the Year

Winner: Eclipse 4DM 01536 416426

Eclipse 4DM has gone one better than last year’s commendation. One of the largest volume direct mail producers in the UK, it mails more than 250m packs a year and covers acquisition, retention, profiling and crossselling campaigns. Take the 281,000 mailings for Sky. The client wanted a mailing suitable for DM and door-drop campaigns. Eclipse’s best minds homed in on a solution that combined peel-and-reveal with a brochure to encourage tactile interaction. The result was a 4pp cover with an 8pp stitched-in section, polywrapped with the peel-and-reveal elements clearly exposed to coax the recipients to open the pack. The cover was printed sheetfed, with the text printed and folded inline on a web press. The piece was engaging and interactive, leaving judges impressed on many levels: “The entry showed what is possible if, rather than just taking
a brief and delivering the basic requirement, a printer looks at ways to add value and, importantly, deliver a return for the client.”

Highly commended:

Pureprint Group 01825 768811

Environmental Company of the Year

Winner: Park Communications 020 7055 6500

Park Communications can’t stop winning because it won’t stop rolling out environmental initiatives. Last year it was commended after triumphing in this category in 2012, and 2014 has seen the screws turned even tighter. Take spoilage, the business reduced this by 17%, while waste to landfill was slashed by 26%. The percentages pile up: Autowash? Down 15%. IPA usage? Down 8%. On it goes; staff embraced the adoption of an environmental management system. And by working with suppliers and developing reporting techniques, the team has increased accuracy of data for a more precise overview. And here comes the crunch. Park’s ‘cleaner, greener’ message has become a key part of building sales, enabling customers to demonstrate their own good green practices. All this has helped Park’s bottom line by reducing costs and improving returns.

Highly commended:

Cestrian Imaging 0161 488 3300

Fine Art Printer of the Year

Winner: Push Print 020 7231 1166

Push Print has won this hyper-demanding category where detail and quality are everything. A host of near-perfect jobs include Damien Hirst’s Visual Candy, involving extensive retouching, colour balancing and a debossed cover. But it was the Archive of Modern Conflict by the photographer Don McCullin that really won over the judges: “The McCullin book showed fantastic reproduction of black-and-white imagery, the quality was arresting and the production helped you become absorbed in the images.” Key points included tri-tone images throughout, inline gloss varnish to images and cloth-wrapped front and back boards. Push Print machine proofed images on three different stocks; a slightly off-white paper was chosen. Another book, Calder after the War, also managed to bring beauty to the disaster of conflict thanks to perfect production.

Highly commended:

Pureprint Group 01825 768811

FMCG Packaging Printer of the Year

Winner: The Sherwood Press Group 0115 928 7766

Typical FMCG fare may be short on shelf life and lower in value, but Sherwood Press ensured longevity of impact and lustrous looks in print to jump from being a finalist in 2013 to take the top spot this year. The Apple box for Norman Collett is one of several jobs that stood out. Construction and graphic design were created in-house. The carrier box, engineered to meet store merchandising requirements, not only won over judges - “a very considered entry, demonstrating excellent quality and consistent construction” - but the client was “thrilled to see the concept on shelf; this was made easier by working with Sherwood Press’ forward-thinking team”. Another of many satisfied customers was Bakkavor Group for the Tesco Finest Croquembouche Dessert Kit.

Highly commended:

FFP Packaging Solutions 01604 798600

Industrial Digital Printer of the Year

Winner: Real Digital International 020 8603 7000

Real Digital is making a habit of this. Last year it came top and the year before it was runner-up in this category, by balancing smart use of data and high-quality creativity. Lexus Insight, a quarterly campaign, has evolved into a tightly focused customer acquisition and retention programme with premium creative treatment, fully managed distribution and optimised data capture to generate in-depth follow-up research. Real Digital receives data, logic and variable zoning diagrams to create a highly variable personalised mailing piece. The customer’s response? “It’s a pleasure working with the team as nothing is too much trouble and the results are consistently good.” And the judges’ conclusion? “The Lexus
piece, even though it was a very tight turnaround, was of the highest quality and demonstrated really smart use of data throughout.”

Highly commended:

The Lettershop Group (part of the YM group) 0113 231 1113

Label Printer of the Year

Winner: Label Apeel 0116 231 4555

The customer wanted its labels to resemble leather-bound books, but there is no disguising the talent that helped Label Apeel win this category for a second year running. Text in an old-fashioned script typeface on a thick, textured substrate gives the impression of a label that has been on a bottle for years. Fine detail and the subtle emboss on the background adds to the premium look and feel for the labels for Master of Malt. Vintage stuff, according to the judges: “Breathtaking - every detail is perfectly executed”. Tarquin’s Dry Gin for Southwestern Distillery is a simple design and crisp finish. Two hits of black achieved the right density with silver foil and a spot matt varnish to ensure both bottle and label company stand out. “Just beautiful,” cooed the judges. “It proves what’s possible if you take real pride in your work”.

Highly commended:

The Label Makers 01274 681151

Luxury Packaging Printer of the Year

Winner: Pureprint Group 01825 768811

When Sotheby’s came knocking, Pureprint answered. The Doha Box is a rigid five-piece case with angled front cover corner, hidden magnetic closure and ribbon with hidden anchor point for ease of accessing the contents. When it came to printing, a 130gsm silk paper was inked in CMYK with a fluoro green. Soft-touch matt lamination with spot gloss UV varnish to the front cover. Sotheby’s was sold: “The boxes look amazing. We are super pleased – an outstanding job.” There are lots of satisfied customers: Berkeley Square, Bloom and the New Era Cap Company to name a few. And of course there are the judges, who enthused: “Outstanding quality, print and finishing in perfect harmony, all of which epitomise luxury packaging. The standard in this category was incredible, but the superb finish of this entry really stood out.”

Highly commended:

Screaming Colour 020 7549 3400

Magazine Printer of the Year

Winner: Park Communications 020 7055 6500

Maybe it was the excellent lift and detail on all those uncoated text sections. Or perhaps that dense black on monochrome imagery worked its magic. Whatever, since moving to Park in 2013, It’s Nice That agency has noted the improved quality in its quarterly title Printed Pages. The agency wanted to add value, improve quality and increase pagination but stick to the same budget. Park suggested a mixture of coated and uncoated to increase impact and embossing the cover to give a tactile look and feel while being more cost-effective than purchasing pre-textured paper. This is not a one-off. Park worked its wonders with better reproduction and binding for Wrap, a magazine on illustration and culture, and once again the plaudits came in. Judges agreed: “Inspirational entry and proof that magazines are very much alive and kicking.”

Highly commended:

Pureprint Group 01825 768811

Marketing Campaign of the Year

Winner: 1st Byte 0844 815 9662

In February this year 1st Byte added an extra dimension to its services – literally. The Farringdon, London digital printer launched Sensory Printing, a service for digitally producing textured and metallic effects. It had to create a brand, a logo and a campaign to promote the process, which research had found could increase attention by 73%. Its campaign encompassed web, social media, press and events, including inserts in Creative Review magazine to showcase physical samples. The results were impressive. For a modest budget the team won 277 jobs and secured 89 new clients. The judges said: “A great example of how to invest, promote and win new work across multiple platforms; an amazing result from a standing start without spending lots of money.”

Highly commended:

ProCo 0114 272 8888

Newspaper Printer of the Year

Winner: Trinity Mirror Printing (Watford) 01923 815124

It’s four in row for Trinity Mirror, which has made this category its own since 2011, thanks to punchy colour and adventurous technological advances. Check out the form in the Racing Post for its Oaks Day Special Edition this June, for which the full-colour presses laid down colour for the silks on score cards. A fully colour-managed workflow using softproofing ensured accurate proofs calibrated to newsprint stock. The Daily Mirror remains the printer’s core business with a nightly print order of around 500,000 copies. The 72pp, 6 June edition, including World Cup and puzzles sections, was produced on three presses running at 40,000 copies per hour to meet tight deadlines and helped to secure another scoop for Trinity Mirror – victory in this category thanks to what judges hailed as “bright, clear and consistent quality – a spot-on submission”.

Highly commended:

Newbury Weekly News 01635 564516

Point-of-Purchase Printer of the Year

Winner: Augustus Martin 020 7537 4200

Augustus Martin was commissioned by Maybelline to develop a bespoke unit for the launch of the Big Eyes mascara and eye shadow ranges. Its answer was a bulbous unit echoing the logo. Produced using large-format litho in four colours plus varnish across various substrates, it was hailed by judges as “demonstrating a unique understanding of colour”. Ann Summers, meanwhile wanted window displays tailored to each store. This threw up multiple challenges, which were solved using multi-part display packs with scalable window vinyls and free-standing units printed across digital and screen on up to five substrates. The professional approach comes as little surprise from last year’s finalist and 2012 winner.

Highly commended:

Cestrian Imaging 0161 488 3300

The Delta Group 020 8498 4400

Poster Printer of the Year

Winner: Odessa Print Group 020 8778 7888

The Imax cinema in central London is the largest cylindrical wrap poster site in Europe and Odessa was commissioned by Ocean Outdoor to produce a poster for The Amazing Spider-Man 2 movie. It ticked all the boxes with judges, who
were looking not only at print quality but in-situ effectiveness and customer service. Imax’s size, made positioning panels correctly a tall order, which the firm solved by numbering each panel and collating them to make things easier for the posting company. Virgin’s Commonwealth Games job involved five versions of 48 sheets and four versions of 96 sheets on both paper and backlit displays. The site-specific campaign had the potential for problems with the wrong posters on the wrong sites. However, by numbering and adding site-specific barcodes to each poster the team eliminated the risk of misposting.

Highly commended:

SMP Group 020 8855 5535

Post-press Company of the Year

Winner: Screaming Colour 020 7549 3400

Screaming Colour has done it again. Last year it won this category on its problem-solving prowess; this year it took the number-one spot for its flair on projects such as a catering proposal for Leeds Castle. This visually striking piece was designed in-house with finishing reflecting both the castle’s history and modern use. Bright, quirky elements illustrate the eccentric nature of Lady Baillie who restored and renovated the castle in the 1920s. The outer box was foiled in gold on red then wrapped over board to give a traditional but luxurious feel, which scored where it mattered most: the document helped the client secure the tender. The brief for Ferrero’s ‘Intriguingly Unconventional’ box meanwhile was for a series of premium boxes encasing one another like Russian dolls. This project, according to judges, was “fantastically conceived; perfectly executed”. Each layer revealed a new part of the story.

Highly commended:

Celloglas 0118 916 7300

Reports & Accounts Printer of the Year

Winner: Park Communications 020 7055 6500

Property developer Capco’s annual report, with high production values and luxurious feel, is a marketing tool that must deliver results. Vibrant images, smooth tints on maps, floor plans and charts and high colour consistency along with pin-sharp sewing and binding convey a high-end product. “The metallic gold achieved a honey-like hue, the colour tints were as smooth as a mill pond and the photography came out as crisp as a frosty December morning,” were the words of the agency client. High production values and smooth vignettes were highlighted in Synthomer’s annual report. PPHE Hotel Group report’s use of paper stocks give it an, upmarket feel that is as much a coffee table book as one to adorn a boardroom table. The judges concluded: “A really impressive, innovative portfolio with excellent colour consistency that really stands out.”

Highly commended:

CPI Colour 020 8688 7500

SME of the Year

Winner: Nationwide Print 01726 72548

Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Cornwall is grabbing attention down in the West Country. The print company that recently added this signature restaurant to its roster of tasty blue-chip clients is grabbing attention way beyond. Smallish and pretty much perfectly formed, St Austell-based Nationwide Print has bumped up turnover by 19% and increased gross profit by 24%. Proper yum. This year’s SME of Year is also one of the few printers in the country to power its presses with renewable energy, using solar panels to produce about 40% of its electricity, which has helped save over 16 tonnes of CO2 in the past year. Having entered the digital fray, two years of increasing output means it is considering a second digital press. Right now, Nationwide Print is eyeing up wide-format printing to ensure its output is as enticing as one of those scrummy Jamie Oliver dishes.

Highly commended:

AJS Labels 01903 731212

Social Stationery Printer of the Year

Winner: Windles Group 01844 201683

“Posters are coming back into fashion again,” insists last year’s finalist who went one better this year using a cold-foil process and bold contrasting colours for a job for GB Eye. “Now the gift and stationery stores can’t get enough of them,” and a look at the quality from Windles Group suggests why. Another creative twist on the norm for posters is the use of a 280gsm board, rather than more standard lighter weight papers. Windles Group delivered again for ‘Form’ by The Art File. Manufacturing demands of these greetings cards were formidably high, especially the need for extremely precise die-cuts, with no room for error. Reprints were required within weeks. The judges had two words for Windles Group: “Stunning precision.”

Highly commended:

The Sherwood Press Group 0115 928 7766

Trainee of the Year

Winner: Jordan Dudas, AJS Labels

If Jordan Dudas was curious about printing, his bosses were no less fascinated by their new recruit when he turned up at AJS Labels late last summer. The high-achiever at college played pro-level football for Brighton and Hove Albion, but could he take the hard knocks of printing? Dudas enrolled on a BPIF print administration NVQ Level 3 and within a few months was ready for AJS Labels’ most demanding account, a bluechip client big on intricate compliance procedures. His bosses feel full-on respect. Commercial team leader Jon Tucker says: “Jordan is already becoming a major asset.” Managing director Andrew Scrimgeour is more direct: “I am sure we are looking at a future leader of the printing industry.”

Highly commended:

Aiden McCann, Tradeprint

Jonathan Taylor, De La Rue