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Post-Expo Exhibitor Spotlight: NPI and Prolistic

Mail volumes may in general be falling worldwide, but that does not mean that there will be a fall in demand for high-speed sorters. Indeed visitors to Post-Expo will be able to see the fastest sorter in the world in operation on Prolistic’s stand. Developed by NPI in the USA, and customised with control software, OCR and peripheral systems by NPI’s partner, Prolistic, for the European market, the CROSSFIRE sorter runs at speeds in excess of 100,000 mailpieces per hour, outperforming two conventional sorters. The CROSSFIRE’s reduced footprint is a radical new approach, resulting in reduced labour costs, power consumption and facilities cost, and provides “the most productive, cost-effective sorting system on the market today”, according to the company.

Henry Daboub, NPI’s CEO and president, commented: “Our customers have requested increased speeds and forward thinking technologies in this competitive industry and NPI is excited to bring those needs to the marketplace in the CROSSFIRE.”

The basic concept for this double-feed sorter, with two in-feeds on each side of the machine, was first discussed by NPI about two years ago. Its appearance at Post-Expo will be European launch for this innovative equipment.

Prolistic’s CEO, Robert N. Blattmann, comments about the state of the postal market in Europe: “As far as the private market in Europe is concerned there will be considerable development, as has been seen in Germany, for example, since the postal market was partly liberalised there 10 years ago. The mail market in general terms certainly not grow any more, if anything there will be a decrease in physical mail, but this fall will be compensated for by the growing private market, which will need to equip with sorters of all types. The private market has not yet achieved its potential – gaining only around 10 percent in Germany since full liberalisation four years ago – and growth in this area will provide our major customers in the future. The postal market throughout the EU will be more or less liberalised by the end of this year.”

This shake-up of the industry represents a huge opportunity for equipment suppliers such as Prolistic.

Another area in which the company’s machines are increasingly required is in large organisations such as insurance companies that handle huge quantities of internal, incoming and outgoing mail.

For example, one of Prolistic’s customers is Ergo Insurance in Düsseldorf, which handles between 150,000 and 200,000 outgoing mailpieces per day. High-speed sorters are essential there, as the company can pre-sort mail according to destination and service provider, depending on who is offering the best delivery rates at the moment.

“The market has become much more fluid,” says Blattmann. “A large company is more or less forced to be able to choose the best delivery partner in the market and this is only possible if it has full control over its outgoing mail.”

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