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Nashik signage players accelerate from one level to another

Being a popular tourist destination known for pilgrimages and century-old temples around, Nashik is always an attraction, and this attraction has to be magnified as signage players in this historical western Indian city are gearing up to facelift the city’s outlook using advanced signage technologies and products in both outdoor and indoor domains. Travelling bandwagon of SIGN & GRAPHICS interacts with a select group of signage companies in the city to discover what they are up to and their plans ahead. Here’s an ABHINAV MALLIK report.

Known for essence of creativity

Sandeep Verma
When it comes to using creativity into sign making, ADVIEW does it in an utmost manner with its robust team of 35 well-trained professionals and a fully-equipped production facility of 5,500 sq ft, plus a 4,500 sq ft warehouse. ADVIEW has been in the industry for more than 30 years, engaging in accomplishment of landmark signage projects for corporate firms in and around Nashik. It has been the company’s essence of creativity that pulls customers from far-off towns and cities of Maharashtra, beyond Nashik. A fine art professional by background , Sandeep Verma, founder of ADVIEW Pvt Ltd, has the novelty of creative control implemented in every signage project they take up. “I have the knack of fine art, which is useful in bringing untouched concepts into any given signage work we create,” he explains, adding that such a pinch of creativity makes the company’s works standout among competitors.

Some of the company’s customers, which have been associated with them for years, include GlaxoSmithKline, Maya Biotech in the pharma sector and BPL Mobile Phone in other market domains. When asked one of their landmark projects, Sandeep mentions a glow sign project they just have completed for Hotel Express Inn in the city. “A major challenge in the project was construction of a 9-ft-long LED rooftop display board. For that, we chose best of LED components, aluminium panels and other quality materials,” mentions Sandeep. He also mentions the campaigns they had carried out during the introduction of BPL Mobile Phone and inauguration of Aptech Computer Education Centre in Nashik.

Behind all rigor and success of ADVIEW is its infrastructure. “But we had full experience in manual work to create signage and display items made of acrylic sheets, playing with some creativity, before we brought digital large-format printers in our facility,” recalls Sandeep. He says things get enhanced in their production facility from time to time with gradual adoptions of machines of all kinds and configurations. As on today, ADVIEW’s production facility is equipped with a Roland DG (six feet eco-solvent), an HP DesignJet 5500, a DGI (solvent), a Roland vinyl cutting plotter, a Woodpecker CNC router, a laminator, laser engraver, among others. Further, the facility is gearing up to add an HP Latex system and a UV flatbed, sooner than later.

Kanak Advertising & Event Management
An ally for all jobs

Lobhesh Dhanvijay
It was formerly called P Kumar Arts Services, a graphic designing and painting shop, run by artist Pritam Dhanvijay around 25 years ago. It has been changed its stance through changes in time, tradition and trend in sign making business and printing technologies. The advent of digital wide-format printers and other relative machines like CNC routers, laser engravers, etc is a vital point behind the company incarnating into a new avatar in sign making business. After years of engagement in production of hand-painted signboards, Pritam passed on the whole business to his elder son Lobhesh Dhanvijay who in turn renamed the company as Kanak Advertising and Event Management.

It has been 10 years since Kanak Advertising and Event Management innaugurated its production setup with the installation of a Macart Picojet Photon printer (with XAAR Photon printhead). Since then the company has been serving a host of corporate clients from diverse industrial clusters. As the name says the company is into event management too, engaging in stage/expo stall fabrications and installations for events like road shows, product launches and corporate parties. Also, as part of its mainstay in sign making, the company takes up allied projects on wall painting, interior designing and branding.

“We have cordially tied up with a number of corporate biggies for years,” asserts Lobhesh, adding that their clients are those who primarily come with bulk orders for large-scale projects. Mention of a few regular clients of the company may include some big names like Gulf Oil, HDFC Bank, NITCO, Malabar Golden and VIVO Mobile Phone. Lobhesh says among all dynamics behind the company’s success is its robust team of 10 highly-trained professionals. Kanak Advertising and Event Management, a two-crore firm today, is still looking ahead for further upgrades in its manpower and machines. “We are planning to add a flatbed printer to our setup, preferably a MUTOH system,” shares Lobhesh.

Ganesh Art
Outdoor campaign expert

Ramhari B
Since its inception in the year 2004, Ganesh Art has been working for customers from diverse industrial clusters and different walks of life. Some of the leading national political parties are in the company’s clientele. “Whenever there are elections in the state, we engage in huge projects to produce banners of all sorts for a number of political parties,” says Ramhari B from Ganesh Art. He adds that the political parties, which have been associated with them for years, assign them for tasks other than election banners. “These political parties conduct regular party conventions and such promotional activities throughout the year. We are closely involved with them (political parties) for anything they need in wide-format printing,” he asserts.

The production facility of Ganesh Art is currently equipped with a DGI VT II 62 - 64" solvent printer, alongside another 10 ft solvent system (with KM 1024 printhead). “As of now we are managing everything with these two printers; but our plan is to upgrade the portfolio by installing an eco-solvent printer soon,” mentions Ramhari, adding that ‘update’ will take place from time to time as per the market trend and demand of customers. Installed separately in the production facility of the company for laser-cut applications is a SIL laser engraver. A team of four well-trained sign making professionals is behind the overall operation of the production facility.

So far, in the client list of Ganesh Art are some leading mobile companies as well as a bunch of companies from FMCG and other sectors. Above all, according to him, Ganesh Art also entertains walk-in customers who come for on-demand jobs. When enquired about their machine portfolio expansion, Ramhari says they take up plan to add an eco-solvent printer to enhance their production volume and quality.

Manoj Arts
On new path to LED work

Manoj Karpe
Having been in the industry for over 15 years is enough for founder Manoj Karpe of Manoj Arts to have the savoir faire about what is trending in the market. “LED-based glow sign solutions—these are what we expect to be the trend taking the signage industry to a new level in near future. In India, there are still a lot of business opportunities lying untapped in the glow sign domain,” says Manoj adding, “Probably, we will be taking our activities fully into production of LED-based illuminated signage solutions, leaving flex printing behind.”

Barely equipped with a conventional solvent printer with KM 512 printhead and an ordinary 4x3 ft laser-cutting system, the current production facility of Manoj Arts has to upgrade the portfolio, for which Manoj says they are planning to invest in a line of equipments for glow-sign making. “We are gradually switching to new innovations and designs in LED signs as future sustainability is guaranteed in this segment,” mentions Manoj, adding that applications they are now focusing on are predominantly ‘LED letters’ and planning to take it further for expansion.

At present, Manoj Arts manages everything at a very entry level with a small team of sign making professionals. So far so good, the company has been working for a few regular customers, comprising a host of leading hotels, restaurants, export firms in the city. Mention of a few of them may include Fog City Hotel, Nirlep, Weskon, Nasik 9 News Channel, for them Manoj Arts provides LED-based glow sign systems of all kind. In addition, Manoj Arts works for Shiv Sena, carrying out some special signage campaigns for the regional political party. The current turnover of the company is around Rs 80 lakh and Manoj is hoping to intensify it as they are aggressively diverting their old path towards new and potential LED domain.

Sachin Arts
All under one roof

When it opened its door to sign-making business in the year 1991, Sachin Arts had nothing special but an ordinary name with no fame. Founder of the firm, Sachin, recalls that they used to engage only in small (number plate making) activities in the first onset. “As the region’s signage market has received tremendous growth over the last few years, with the ushering of advanced sign-making technologies and products, we follow the market trends,” he says. From being a mere vehicle number plate maker then to a complete signage solution provider today, Sachin Arts is now inclusive in providing anything that their customers want.

As on today, the production setup of Sachin Arts is equipped with a versatile range of printers, plotters and many other equipments. A Mimaki JV33 eco-solvent printer (DX5 printhead), Nutek Prime solvent printer (XAAR printhead) and GCC Ultra cutting plotter are three main machines running currently at the company’s production facility. “Though we have expanded into domains other than vehicle and nameplate making, focus on our old activity will remain intact as we are still very much into it, looking ahead to tap more innovative outputs,” explains Sachin.

Some of the major customers for whom Sachin Arts has completed a string of landmark projects are Oppo and Vivo mobile phones. “For these two leading mobile firms, we have been engaging in execution of a series of outdoor signage projects of diverse scales when they were launching in the city. The campaigns ranged from either roadside hoardings or in-shop graphics,” says Sachin. According to him, his team of proficient sign making professionals is considerably the vital force behind the company’s competency. Being located in a strategic spot in the city is also an added advantage for the company to pull customers and hassle-free deliveries of their final products. Planning next for Sachin Arts is to upgrade their machine portfolio with a new 10 ft printer, probably an Infiniti system, in near future.

A newbie in the block

Gaurav Atre and Aakash Gaikwad
Closer look at the current signage market of Nashik may discover a league of new players who have just been forayed. In the league, ARTSPOT is mentionable. They are mentionable for their rapid progression. Barely a year ago, two partners— Gaurav Atre and Aakash Gaikwad— started the firm with the adoption of a brand new Allwyn with KM 512 printhead. Immediately, a Redshell plotter and a CNC router had also been added in the facility. Then in a matter of a year, ARTSPOT has gained popularity among walk-in customers, which include kirana shops, organisers of local cultural and religious events and others.

ARTSPOT has future plans for expansion, in terms of manpower and machine portfolio. “As of now, we are managing everything in a meager way. We have just a couple of staffers to handle everything right from machine operation upto fabrication and installation work. After seeing the market situation, we will surely go for a bigger expansion on all fronts,” says Gaurav. He adds that they have a firmed vision to make ARTSPOT a one-stop signage corner.

About the printing technologies, Aakash feels there is a huge scope for UV printing in the graphic art market. “Now the traditional printing methods and procedures have been subsided gradually with the constant introduction of ultramodern technologies. In such a transition phase, we must learn to move along the market trend,” he explains. Next big thing to be happened in the production facility of ARTSPOT is UV. According to Aakash, a UV printer will be joining the company’s existing family of machines, sooner than later.

Shree Anand Enterprises
Complete solution provider

Roshan V Khivansara
Another signage player in the city with expertise to cater signage solutions of all kinds in both indoor and outdoor domains is Shree Anand Enterprises. This Rs 3.5 cr firm is known for its capability to deliver anything of signage or display system, all exclusively under its roof. “It’s not that we just provide print jobs; ours is complete sign making corner. Even, we have a team of experienced graphic designers who could help our customers get designs and layouts of their choice,” asserts Roshan V Khivansara, proprietor, Shree Anand Enterprises.

Behind the quality jobs of Shree Anand Enterprises is its sturdy infrastructure (production facility) where equipped a line of competent machines. The company is perhaps the first signage player in the city with a 10 ft Infiniti printer, which was installed in 2006, followed by a line of other quality machines year after year. As on today, the company’s production setup of 8,500 sq ft is equipped with another 10 ft Artix printer with KM 512 printhead, a Mimaki CJV 30-160, a CNC Router, a 4x3 Laser Engraver, among others. “We take up projects on router-cut and engraved sign systems using whole range of rigid materials like steel, wood, glass and others,” explicates Roshan.

Shree Anand Enterprises is a corner where converged customers of all kinds, which include walk-in lot as well as corporate biggies, who come up with surety of grabbing what they want. Some regular customers of the company who have been associated with them for years include Century Ply, Samsung, Kajeria Tiles, to mention a few. When enquired about their expansion plan, Roshan says they have many in diverse verticals, but the priority is on adoption of a flatbed printer, which he thinks will boost the company’s versatility in outputs to a new level.

Galaxy Advertising
One-stop corner for all

Jitendra Umarakar (right) with colleagues
In the year 1998, Galaxy Advertising was established as a specialist in outdoor rooftop systems. Jitendra Umarkar, who is an upper hand behind this signage firm, states that gradual growth witnessing in diverse domains of the industry instilled them to come out of the single task (outdoor hoarding). It was in the year 2005, Galaxy Advertising took up a new step to foray into digital large-format printing, with the adoption of a brand new Allwin printer with KM 512 printhead of 35 pl.

Galaxy Advertising operates from two separate divisions—one for production and other for overall management and marketing—located in the city’s business hub Panchwati. The company boasts a team of half-dozen skilled professionals, who are engaged in all-round activities, which include printing, fabrication and installation tasks. As per the demand and requirement of their clients, the team travels the length and breadth of the city to carry out recce and installations. So far, the clients for whom Galaxy Advertising has accomplished a number of landmark projects across the city include Samsung, Sony, Airtel, Ambuja Cement, and others. “We have also been working for some of the leading real estate firms in the city, namely Rajshree Builders, Roongta Builders, for them we have done tremendous promotional projects in and outside Nashik.

Kalarang Art
Budding modular expert

Suraj Shinde
Yet another player, which is relatively young in the city’s signage market, is Kalarang Art. Incepted in the year 2009, this signage shop has been one of the crowded corners swarming with customers who come up particularly for modular displays, name plates, vehicle number plates and such kinds. For all these, Kalarang Art has a small production unit, where installed a Dell laser engraving machine of 3x4 ft from Baba Graphics in Mumbai, to handle modular signage projects.

Using diverse range of materials like radium, teflon and many unconventional materials, Kalarang Art makes customised display systems, ranging from name plates to LED light boxes. “When it comes to quality control in the sign systems, we always go for well-recognised brands like Samsung and LG while choosing LED components and SMPS,” says Suraj from Kalarang Art. Revealing it as one of the landmark projects they have completed till date, he mentions their projects providing LED-backed promotional light boxes for two major mobile companies—Vivo and Oppo.

Though young and still at a nascent stage in the market, Kalarang Art is gearing up for expansion of its manpower and machine portfolio. “What we are planning is to install a CNC routing system soon in our production facility,” tells Suraj, adding that it will help them find a new thrust in business.