SLS 2000 inserter installed in Minnesota
July 14, 2015
Editor & Publisher Profile of The Network
Production: Cost Saving Partners
By Nu Yang, Managing Editor February 23, 2015
As newspapers navigate into the new year, many of them are looking for resources that will help them save on production costs. This month, we take a look at two companies, PAGE Cooperative and The Network, both with services that will not only increase the quality of your work, but rescue your bottom line . . .
The Print Packaging Network
Launched in 2010, The Print Packing Network (otherwise known as The Network) was founded by former Muller Martini Mailroom Systems vice president of sales and marketing Keith Hockenbery. After leaving the company in 2009, he was still being contacted by his newspaper and vendor clients on leads, so he decided to create The Network.
See the rest of the story here.
In preparation for taking on additional work, the Daily Times in Farmington, NM has contracted with The Network to do a major overhaul of its mailroom. The paper will be handling production for five newspapers from Ballantine Communications, including the Durango (Col.) Herald and the Cortez (CO) Journal. The video shows the "before" situation. One of the two existing Muller inserters will be removed, and the other relocated. In its place, an SLS 2000 12:2 machine will be installed, and the relocated Mueller 227 will be used as a back-up.
August 26, 2014
Consolidating Production for BANG
Concord, CA: Bay Area News Group (BANG), a division of Digital First Media (DFM), has moved production of the San Jose Mercury News to its other facilities. Keith Hockenbery’s firm, The Network, completed the post-press work, removing the inserters from the Mercury News plant and relocating them. An SLS2000 was reconfigured into a 28:2 machine and installed in Hayward, while a large SLS1000A was converted to a 6:2 and installed at the Concord plant. It was a turnkey project, with The Network providing all engineering, relocation, and start-up services.
According to Joe Boessenecker, Senior Vice President of Operations: “Keith was very hands-on and diligent with this project, which helped ensure its success from start to finish. The start-up of the relocated equipment went very smoothly.”
The BANG facilities produce 10 DFM daily newspapers, as well as the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Stanford Daily, and a number of weeklies. They also handle the packaging for a number of DFM NorCal community newspapers.
April 3, 2015
Postpress Upgrade for Journal Register Offset
21st Century Media unit Journal Register Offset of Exton, PA, is adding an inserter and additional equipment to its mailroom in a project being overseen by The Network.
The Network is installing and providing start-up services for the 8:2 SLS2000, which was originally installed at the St. Paul (MN) Pioneer Press. Also included in the project is a Flexi-Roll twin unwinder. This will allow the plant to wind up products off the press and unwind them directly into the jacket hopper of the inserter, a productivity improvement over the hand feeding that is currently required. According to Gary Coppola, General Manager of Journal Register Offset: “Keith has done a lot of work lately for our parent company 21st Century Media/Media News Group with great success,” and this project will “save us time, money and finally give us a 100% back up mailroom equipment as we will be able to utilize the unwinding station.”
In a previous project, The Network provided engineering, programming and installation services when JRO updated its tie lines with Quipp Pacman stackers and Dynaric strappers as part of a transition to 44” web width.
Journal Register Offset produces six daily newspapers, including the Delaware County (PA) Times and the Trentonian (NJ), as well as 40 weekly newspapers and two commercial daily newspapers.
February 23, 2015
The Network to the Rescue in Milwaukee
In the fall of 2013, insert versions and zoning were jumping to new highs, putting a strain on the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s inserting capabilities. Valuable time was lost as machines were shut down to change zones; there weren't enough hoppers to accommodate all the different inserts. Packaging Operations Manager Pete Kowalewski and Sr. Director/Plant Operations Gary Hall saw the need to expand some of their inserters in 2014, and got the capital approved.
Fast forward to September 2014. Despite receiving a contract and down payment months earlier, the original vendor could not deliver the promised equipment – they didn't have it. With the busy season right around the corner, the Journal Sentinel was in a pinch. They contacted Keith Hockenbery, owner of The Network. Keith assured them that yes, he had the needed equipment, and in fact showed it to Pete where it was in storage. The Network was granted the contract and quickly came in and converted two SLS2000 inserters to 28 hoppers each, up from 18 and 20 hoppers respectively. They also added an unwinder/title-up jacket feeder to a third machine. All the work was completed on time and on budget by The Network’s expert installers, and the Journal Sentinel is ready for the big volumes of the fourth quarter.
When asked to describe the best part of working with Keith Hockenbery and The Network, Pete Kowalewski didn’t hesitate: “Keith’s honest. If he says he can do something, he can, and it will go exactly as he said.” In fact, the Journal Sentinel is already planning another project with The Network for 2015.
November 15, 2014
Keith Hockenbery Representing Burt
EVERGREEN, CO: Burt Technologies, Inc., developers of the BURT System family of packaging & distribution software solutions, has contracted with Keith Hockenbery to provide sales and marketing services. Hockenbery has deep experience in post-press equipment and software sales, originally with GMA/Muller Martini, and since 2010 as President of his own firm, The Network.
Burt President Jim Burt noted: “Keith’s knowledge of our software makes him a natural fit for representing us around the country. He understands how our products can ease production planning for mailrooms large and small.” Hockenbery will handle sales of Burt’s flagship PackagingManager application, as well as additional products such as LineManager and DistributionManager. “The BURT System is widely acknowledged as the leading production planning system in our industry. I am proud to be representing Burt Technologies in the marketplace,” said Hockenbery.
October 17, 2014
The Toledo Blade no longer needed their inserting equipment, but they desperately needed some packaging planning software. Keith Hockenbery, in his dual role of Burt Systems representative and owner of The Network, offered them a terrific deal. He would trade them their inserter and ancillary equipment for a Burt system. So, everybody wins. Toledo gets a software system that allows them to seamlessly transfer packaging information to Detroit Newspapers, eliminating the need to re-key or otherwise duplicate information. Burt Technologies sells a system. The Network gets a 30-hopper 632 inserter and some strappers and stackers that they can sell to another newspaper. Keith’s willingness to take the risk of being able to sell the Toledo equipment is highly noteworthy. Not many vendors will go that kind of extra mile to help a customer meet their needs, especially a small business like The Network. Understandably, the folks in Toledo were extremely happy with the deal.
September 2, 2014
Texas-Sized Productivity Improvement
The Longview (TX) News-Journal recently contracted with The Network to repair their inserter and re-train their operators. After just two week-long visits and a follow-up visit a few months later, productivity has risen from less than 5,000 cph to as much as 15,000 cph. A run that used to take up to 20 hours is now routinely completed in under 8 hours. The improvement ”more than paid for the training in a very short period of time,” said Janet Owen, Production Director.
May 2, 2014
Improved Off Times for the Valley News
SLS3000 inserter installed in Pontiac
The Network Celebrates Its Fifth Anniversary
“It’s been a great five years, a wonderful beginning,” said Network President Keith Hockenbery. He is particularly proud that The Network has never been late or over budget with a project. “We have worked hard to earn our customers’ trust, and they have repaid us with repeat business and by recommending us to their colleagues.”
The post-press department at Cannon Valley Printing before and after the SLS-2000 installation.
Audit and Training Avert Disaster at the Chronicle-Telegram
Avoiding costly down time is a high priority for Mailroom Manager Dave Demyan at the Elyria (OH) Chronicle-Telegram. That’s why he brought in The Network to audit their equipment and provide training for the team. The timing was excellent, as The Network’s president, Keith Hockenbery, discovered a drive shaft in danger of failure, which could have shut down one of the two inserters for days. There were also some very worn bearings on the overhead conveyor. Those parts are being replaced, avoiding serious problems.
The operator training also proved its worth right away. Keith was able to explain how the machine was intended to be run, which was somewhat different than the way they had been running it, Demyan admitted. The operators can also now refer to booklets with set-up tips provided by The Network. Result: Unopened jackets are down 20%. After the on-site work was completed, Keith made multiple follow-up calls to make sure there were no remaining issues or questions. That kind of customer service is “sometimes lacking, and very much appreciated,” said Demyan.
February 22, 2016
Northern California Newspapers Optimize Packaging
In a move to improve productivity and efficiency, California Newspapers Partnership, a unit of Digital First Media, contracted with The Network for a multifaceted project. The Network disassembled a 10:2 SLS 1000 inserting machine at the Vacaville Reporter, then reassembled it at the Chico Enterprise-Record. The installation included new inserter controls. Also in Chico, The Network upgraded a 1372 inserter, and provided operational and maintenance training for the Chico staff on both machines. The project was finished in time for the Enterprise-Record to be ready for the busy fourth quarter.
December 6. 2015