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Heidelberg Middle East has entered into an agreement to sell and distribute flexographic printing and converting machines from Soma Engineering to countries in GCC, Lebanon and Syria.

The 20-year old Czech Republic based Soma Engineering has 190 employees and specialises in the flexible packaging industry.

Talking to PrintWeek MEA, product manager of sheetfed and flexo-Heidelberg, Biju George said: "We see an increasing demand for flexo machines in the Middle East region with requirements for local sales and service support."

Marketing director of Soma, Petr Blasko added: "This cooperation will strengthen our position in the Middle East and provide us with increased cultural understanding of a growing market recognised for its investment power."

Soma Engineering manufactures a range of CI flexographic printing presses, slitter/rewinders, laminators, mounter/proofers, sheeters and special purpose, custom built machines.

Flexo presses include solvent and water-based machines as well UV based central impression (CI) presses.

The slitter rewinder range can take widths up to 1600mm of paper, films and foils. The laminating machines from Soma include compact design models like Lamiflex E with solvent free designs. The ancillary equipment includes FlexMont plate mounters with Micro Dot precision mounting for widths up to 1600mm and print repeats up to 1300mm. The sheeter from Soma has three knives for web edge trimming and longitudinal cutting for widths of 780 and 900mm.

George added that MIDI gearless flexo and Venus slitters are suitable for the ME market.