Antibacterial – and decorative too
Printed wall coverings have special functional properties that ensure sterility in healthcare facilities – but the visual impression they create is anything but sterile.
Boer & van Wijk, Dordrecht, Netherlands, a company with a long tradition that combines screen printing and digital printing. The firm's offering includes comprehensive POS campaigns for major brand manufacturers as well as printed antibacterial wall coverings for healthcare providers. Boer & van Wijk also supplies signage and printed products (both decorative and functional) to corporate customers and private individuals. The business has gained traction thanks to the Nyala 2 large-format printer.
"Nyala 2 is helping our company to prosper," says Johan van Wijk, just six months after the new large-format printer went into operation at Boer & van Wijk. "It replaced two older Durst printers," he adds, "and our production has now attained far higher standards in terms of quality as well as quantity." Lamination is rarely used now – so that saves a lot of time, Johan notes. The printer's versatility has been a source of inspiration to his team and his customers. Especially in the POS segment, Boer & van Wijk has acquired new customers because the firm's work has attracted attention in the market. "Word-of-mouth recommendation really works," Johan is pleased to confirm.
Total concepts for major brands
"We give our customers an end-to-end service, from advice on the concept, design and production work all the way through to installation on site," Johan explains. Depending on the particular application, the team opts for screen printing or digital printing – or quite frequently a combination of both. The focus is on POS campaigns that sometimes also develop into full-blown promotional events. "We had the chance to support Renault with a major product launch," Johan recalls. "We also developed and equipped a model store with – and for – Sonos," he adds. If this prototype works well, the concept will be replicated at selected locations across Europe.
Decorative antibacterial wall coverings
Boer & van Wijk's specialities include decorative wall coverings with antibacterial properties, tailored to the requirements of healthcare facilities. Nyala 2 prints a mirror image on the reverse of the plastic panels. The finished large-format images make operating theatres, dental surgeries and treatment rooms seem less sterile to the eye – but these areas remain fully sterile as regards their function. "This solution is generating great enthusiasm, and it harbours enormous potential for growth," Johan believes.
Great works of art to hang in the lounge
Personalised interior decor is another trend, he continues. Companies, photographers and private individuals commission prints on substrates such as tempered glass. They want reproductions of classical works that are as faithful to the original as possible, or large-format prints of stock images and their own photographs. As well as CMYK and white, Nyala 2 can handle light colours – so the results often surpass customers' expectations of reproduction quality.
Sterile function, calming for the mind: antibacterial wall coverings in operating theatres.
Museums also number among Boer & van Wijk's loyal customers, including the Dordrechts Museum – a client of 25 years' standing. There is especially heavy demand for wallpapers with specific themes. Boer & van Wijk also offers signage, information panels and guidance systems. Rigid foam board has proven its merits as a universal substrate. "We print large standard panels and then cut out the individual elements," Johan explains. "That's a highly efficient method." But materials such as wood or gold foil might also be used on occasion. The objective is always for the end product to achieve the maximum possible impact. "Since we've had the Nyala 2, we've become enormously keen on experimenting," Johan says with a grin.
A short familiarisation period
He recalls: "Our employees had become proficient after only two weeks." Getting used to Nyala 2 was easy. "As screen printers, we love the swissQprint registration pins," Johan chuckles, "and we're used to working with precise mechanical edge stops." He also appreciates the fact that the Nyala 2 is a pure flatbed printer. "The material is fixed to the print bed, and it's only the print head carriage that moves." What's more, it's always possible to see immediately what is happening on the print bed. That provides security. Another plus: the continuous print-and-cut workflow was quickly coordinated with the Zünd cutter that also arrived on the firm's premises in spring 2017.
Popular for homes and business premises: direct printing on tempered glass. Six-colour printing guarantees finest rendering of detail and gradients.
When taking the lift becomes an experience: interior panelling with large-format printing.
Johan likes German and Swiss products. He considers that both these countries of origin represent values such as stability and reliability. "Screen printing has its roots in Germany," Johan points out. That's why he regards German equipment as the gold standard for screen printing. But when it comes to digital printing, he puts his trust in Swiss mechanical engineering. "I found swissQprint's modular structure was especially convincing," he emphasises. A feature that makes life easier for him: only white needs a doubled-up configuration – he can start with just one print head row for the process colours. This has relieved pressure on the budget, but still allows for the option of deploying a second row later on to double productivity. "We've reached the limits of our space," Johan notes. Although Nyala 2 requires surprisingly little space, there would be no room for a second printer. Apart from that, of course, the investment for an extension would be much lower.
For the same reasons, Johan decided against the roll to roll option, but he still toys with that idea. Johan reveals his plans: "Either the roll to roll option or a second print head row – that will be the next investment." Boer & van Wijk was already flourishing, but Nyala 2 has ushered in an era of even greater prosperity.
Renault (POS, trade fair and event materials)
Museums (wallpapers, signage)
Healthcare/nursing facilities (antibacterial wall coverings)
Philips Lighting (lighting elements for hospitals)
KLM, DHL air freight (container lettering)