Whattheythink.com, Feb. 10, 2003 (Press Release)
February 10, 2003 — The international religious organization Jehovah’s Witnesses has recently ordered seven LITHOMAN presslines from MAN Roland, to be installed in its printing plants in England, Mexico, Brazil, South Africa, Japan (one press each) and the USA (two presses). Delivery of the order running in the middle of tens of million Euros are expected to take place from July 2003.
Almost 80 years of cooperation between Watchtower and MAN Roland
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With the biggest single order of this customer to date, MAN Roland continues the series of international successes in its cooperation with the Watchtower Society over a period of nearly eighty years by now: in 1927, Watchtower USA ordered the first letterpress machine from MAN Roland. A second press followed in 1929. By 1976, about 30 MAN Roland presses had been installed in the United States alone. This made Watchtower the biggest customer worldwide for MAN Roland at that time.
Watchtower production now standardized worldwide with LITHOMAN
Since 1984, Watchtower in Italy and the US has been working with a total of five 32-page LITHOMAN presslines. The positive experience with these machines has now led to the decision to use this press type worldwide. That means printing quality on the highest level worldwide. The new, single-web systems in 64-page configuration operate at speeds up to 45,000 cylinder revolutions per hour and with a web width of 1,480 millimetres. They are uniformly equipped with 2:5:5 folder.
Publications with multimillion circulations
In future, the new Watchtower LITHOMAN presses will be producing a large propoprtion of the high-circulation publications such as The Watchtower with a circulation of just under 25 million copies in 146 languages and Awake with a momentary circulation of 22 million copies in 86 languages. In addition, the machines are intended for use in the production of bibles or books of biblical exegesis, each in multimillion circulation.
More capacity and quality, positive synergies
The new LITHOMAN presses markedly reduce the age average of the Watchtower machinery, thus considerably increasing overall productivity. Another important advantage will result from the close cooperation of the individual Watchtower printing plants, which produce largely the same products. When production will eventually be run on presses of the same type, Watchtower will benefit further because of synergies such as positive cost effects.
Apart from a substantial capacity increase, Watchtower expects maximum availability and reliability, high net output, excellent printing quality and high efficiency to result from the new LITHOMAN machinery, while it looks forward to continuing and intensifying the cooperation with MAN Roland as its partner in printing and press technology.