Astha Packaging on a Fast-Track with Heidelberg

The year 2008 was significant for the Delhi-based Astha Packaging, as they made significant installations in their press and postpress departments.

Mr Anil Narang, Director, Astha, founded the company only seven years ago and has put it on a fast-track by procuring a brand new Heidelberg Speedmaster SM 74 four-colour UV press and a Heidelberg Stahlfolder TD 66 – the first of its kind in India.

Ambitious, dynamic, creative and full of energy, Mr Anil Narang has an interesting personality and one can see his philosophies reflected in the businesses he handles. Anil is a graduate in Economics who started his career by procuring printing orders from companies in the North-East for his father’s publishing company. Anil, however, did not work in his father’s company as an employee or a partner but as a commission agent. This he did as he always knew that he wanted to be an entrepreneur with his own finances. Anil grew the annual turnover by eight fold.

Shortly thereafter he purchased a computer and a laser printer with which he started to do his own designs. He in fact offered designs free of cost as a part of a print-package deal to his clients while the printing was still outsourced. (This design unit has grown manifolds and is a separate company known as ‘Asian Digital Marketing’ today). Being impressed with his creativity and service, his clients insisted Anil shoud have his own printing unit as well.

In 1999, Anil bought the land and existing building in Okhla from another print shop and, in 2001, established Astha Packaging at the same premises measuring 180 squre metres. They started their humble beginning with a Heidelberg SORK single-colour press, followed by a Heidelberg MOV four-colour press. They also set up an in-house postpress unit whose equipment includes two POLAR Cutting Machines. There has been no looking back since then.

Expresses Anil, “We have a passion for Heidelberg and German technology. Heidelberg is the other name of reliability in printing. Right from the inception, we have been using the Heidelberg presses and our faith in the company has only grown stronger.”

With time, the need for added capacities was obvious, however, coupled with this was their desire to produce some very creative applications for which he procured a UV ready Heidelberg Speedmaster four-colour press. Says Anil, “Our Speedmaster is configured to print UV in each unit which makes it unique for us in terms of producing various special applications. We are also printing on various substrates with varied thicknesses. With the new press, we have been able to reinforce the trust that our clients have in us in giving them nothing but the best of quality.”

With its high level of automation and an operating speed of 15,000 sheets per hour, the press can handle the stock thicknesses ranging from 0.03-0.6 millimeter (0.0012-0.024 inch), resulting in a high degree of flexibility.

Along with the press, Astha also installed the first of its kind, state-of-the-art folder from Heidelberg – the Stahlfolder TD 66. The folder is ideal for processing large and special formats. This high-output folder features electronically controlled makereadies, sheet monitoring and production control enhancing their overall productivity.

Astha has further expansion plans and eyes exports. Quoting Anil, “Astha aspires to be a world class company and we are on our way to make that happen.”