Ovato draws a line on New Zealand heatset operations

Apr 07, 2022 at 02:57 am by admin

Webstar in Auckland, and Christchurch-based Inkwise have become New Zealand’s only heatset magazine printers following the shock announcement that Ovato NZ is to close.

Australia’s Ovato – controlled by the Hannan family – is blaming shortage of paper for the decision to shut its heatset print and letterbox delivery operations.

PrintNZ chief executive Ruth Cobb says the “devastating” announcement which will lead to the loss of 100 jobs was “a sad day for the NZ print industry".

Like others, Ovato has been facing substantial price increases on imported stock, and blames its “inability to source paper over the short and medium term” on the pronounced local impact of global conditions. With the effects of the ongoing COV ID-19 pandemic, it “can no longer operate profitably”.

Ovato had closed its Christchurch plant last September, where independently-owned Inkwise – both heatset and coldset – has the South Island’s most modern heatset press.

In the North Island, Webstar is owned by Mercury Capital, which also owns magazine publisher Are Media, which it bought from Bauer after the German owner closed it.

It is now back in business with Kiwi mastheads including Woman's Day, New Zealand Woman's Weekly and Australian Women's Weekly NZ. Are Media also bought the former Gordon & Gotch distribution business from Ovato last August.

Print21 reports that Webstar had been buying paper stock to cover the longer lead times for the past 12 months to build up a buffer.

Sections: Print business


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