Durst and Koenig & Bauer appoint expert to lead new joint venture for digital packaging printing systems
The Durst Group (Brixen, Italy), manufacturer of advanced digital printing and production technologies, and Koenig & Bauer, the oldest printing press manufacturer in the world based in Würzburg, Germany, have appointed Robert Stabler as managing director of their new joint venture effective 1 August. Koenig & Bauer Durst GmbH has been officially established early May following the clearance of antitrust regulations from the relevant authorities.
Robert Stabler, who grew up in the UK, has global experience in technology companies servicing the graphic arts and document management industries. Before joining Koenig & Bauer Durst, he was senior vice-president with Xerox’s Continuous Feed Business, based in Rochester, NY, USA. Previous executive roles also included HP and Agfa.
Business operations are now under way for joint development and marketing of single-pass digital printing systems for the folding carton and corrugated fibreboard industry. Koenig & Bauer Durst will have its registered office in Würzburg, Germany, and cooperate closely with both parent companies’ global network. Initially, the joint venture portfolio will comprise the Koenig & Bauer CorruJET 170 and the Durst SPC 130 – including all associated services and the ink business as well as the development of the VariJET 106.
“I am really excited to take on this new challenge in the folding carton and corrugated packaging markets,” said Stabler. “Both are ripe for digital transformation with run lengths declining in both segments and brands crying out for very good, cost effective, short-run and versioning solutions. We will add all the competencies of Durst and Koenig & Bauer to leverage the best solutions. Durst with its expertise in digital imaging, production systems, inks and software integration, Koenig & Bauer with all its mechanical knowledge, high duty cycle process, engineering, paper transport capabilities plus, of course, the great go-to-market expertise of both teams.”
Christoph Gamper, CEO of the Durst Group, said: “We welcome Robert Stabler who has an impressive track record, is an inspirational leader and is accomplished in proactively managing change management as well as having substantial experience in developing new markets. The team we’ll create for the joint venture will supply the necessary solutions in markets where digital production lines offer huge opportunities for the folding carton and corrugated fiberboard industries.”
Claus Bolza-Schünemann, CEO of Koenig & Bauer AG, commented: “This is the start of something very special in the printing and packaging industry. We are incredibly excited by the opportunities ahead of us and we are confident being able to form a superb team led by Robert Stabler. Our distinct technologies and market expertise will be combined to offer state of the art products, optimized solutions for our customers including a flawless service and support.”