Skip to main content

Esko introduces Suite 12.1

Significant new functionality in workflow automation for packaging, labels, signs & display and print production workflows.

Esko Suite 12.1 brings automation beyond typical prepress tasks to even further streamline workflow throughout the entire packaging and print production supply chain. From novice users to advanced multi-site operations, Suite 12.1 adds valuable new functionality for every user.

Esko (, a global supplier of integrated solutions for packaging, sign and display finishing, commercial printing and professional publishing, announced the release of Esko Suite 12.1 at EskoWorld, its annual user meeting being held in Phoenix, Arizona, May 19-22. The release includes significant new functionality that further streamlines end-to-end workflows across the entire print and packaging supply chain. Suite 12.1 follows the successful release of Suite 12 at drupa 2012 and includes updates of its flagship editing and automation software.

Workflow Made Easier

Suite 12.1 contains enhancements that will make work easier and more profitable for all stakeholders in the print and packaging supply chain, from novice users to advanced environments. Key enhancements incorporated in the release include:

· Standard Template Workflows. For novice users, setting up an effective workflow is not a trivial exercise. By providing standard workflow templates for typical applications such as resp. folding carton, labels, signs, etc, Esko shortens the learning curve for less experienced users. Esko has leveraged its experience in training and in configuring many workflows in the field to create standard templates that automate the most common prepress and production tasks.

· Integration with On-Press Visual Inspection Systems. In prepress editors PackEdge or ArtPro, users can now define areas on a job for inline visual inspection systems. This significantly reduces overall setup time for the press since the inline inspection system receives its setup data directly from Esko Automation Engine. With the inspection area defined upstream and not by the press operator, it becomes easier to standardize the production process across multiple sites, presses and operators. First inspection system integrations work with Esko´s partner AVT.

· CombiPress Support. Especially in the label industry, it is common practice to combine different print processes (offset, flexo, digital, screen) within the same job, with each process requiring different preparation. With CombiPress support, even trapping tickets will automatically perform overprint calculations based on the targeted printing processes, eliminating manual selection of trapping tickets.

· Esko Viewer Sports New Tools. The Esko Viewer in Automation Engine 12.1 is equipped with a barcode and braille reader. With this, the difficulty of manually and visually verifying the accuracy of a barcode or of a line of braille text, an essential check in the prepress QA process, has been overcome.

· Compliance with EU Food Regulations. EU Regulation No. 1169/2011 goes into effect 13 December 2014 onwards. This regulation specifies minimum font size requirements for the nutrition declaration on food packaging. In DeskPack 12.1, the Preflight function can now detect text that does not meet this requirement, ensuring use of the correct font size and providing proof that the produced packaging is compliant.

· Automation of Gang Runs for Flatbed Printers. With a growing number of shorter runs, automating gang printing on large format flatbed digital printers means more profitable operations. With Automation Engine 12.1, multiple odd-shaped designs can automatically be ganged onto a single print sheet layout, improving operator productivity and reducing waste of expensive substrates.

Bernard Zwaenepoel, Senior Vice President Software of Esko says: “After drupa, Esko´s Software Suite 12 was labeled as the industry reference. But we haven’t been resting on these laurels and invested significant time with our customers to understand additional value-adding requirements, many of which we have addressed in this release. By extending our capabilities beyond traditional prepress tasks, Suite 12.1 brings unsurpassed value to service providers, converters and printers alike as they strive to stay competitive and current in a dynamic market environment.”

The release of Esko´s Suite 12.1 is planned from July 2013 onwards and will be available for existing customers.


EskoWorld, an annual users’ conference, is open to any company that has Esko solutions or has signed a purchase order for scheduled solution delivery. EskoWorld 2012 was the largest EskoWorld ever, with about 600 attendees, and EskoWorld 2013 is expected to be even larger. The release of Suite 12.1 during this important event gives attendees a head start on understanding all of the benefits the update will offer.