The following is an excerpt from Print & Publishing Magazine
The ‘graf’ ’graaf’ both in common business may seem to be a natural extension of activities. But it was not. Lot of research had gone into on both sides before shaking hands for a fruitful business tie-up.
Cadgraf has gone into a collaboration with Anygraaf OY, Finland, the total solution providers for newspapers. How it happened, finds out D Ramalingam (DR) from P&P from a tete-e-tete with A Elangovan (AE), managing director, Cadgraf Digitals.
DR: A structural change in the operation of Cadgraf Computers is seen. Can you give an idea about it?
AE: Yes, we are Cadgraf Digitals now. We have given up trading in hardware. Being India’s largest and oldest total solution providers for the press and prepress sectors, our company’s activities are vertically integrated to encompass newspaper publishing, workflow systems, colour management, registration correction for presses, sophisticated training, print-to-digital conversion and Indic Fonts. Over the last 25 years, Cadgraf has worked with many Indian publishing houses including the likes of The Hindu, Anandabazar Patrika, Daily Thanthi, Eenadu, Dinakaran, Hindustan Times, Vasan Publications and Malayala Manorama.
DR: You were known for digital solutions for newspapers and magazines. Is it the natural corollary to upgrade to Anygraaf?
AE: To a certain extent you are right. In the past few years consumers have started consuming their content digitally through the web, mobile phones, tablet apps and social media in addition to print. Newspapers and magazines have added new digital channels to their operations. And they have been using different platforms for publishing to different channels. However with Anygraaf, we found all of this a single platform solution.
DR: How did you ultimately arrive at Anygraaf and how it suited you? Please elaborate upon this.
AE: Last year, I came across Anygraaf at IFRA Amsterdam. I met them to know more in detail about their solutions. We started evaluating them as a single editorial workflow solution to create and publish content to print, digital and mobile channels. However we realised Anygraaf is a lot more with integrated solutions for page planning, advertisement booking (classifieds and display), advertisement sales CRM, automatic pagination, web CMS, mobile / web applications, circulation and distribution systems. Each of these solutions are on the cutting edge and the integration is seamless.
DR: There are also other areas like ad content, pagination and revenue management for both subscriptions and ads. What about these?
AE: Cadgraf has been evaluating many products. But the first product that truly integrated print and all digital channels was Anygraaf. Neo by Anygraaf provides a single, content-centric console for planning, producing and sharing content across channels including online, mobile, tablet, social media and of course print. Integrated systems for edition & page planning, editorial, ad booking and placement mean that a new rollout can be done quickly and cost effectively. We showed it to some of the largest publishers in India – who say that it has all the features of the top end products while being more affordable.
DR: More affordable! How was it worked out?
AE: Firstly, we have our own experts. That way, engaging very expensive Anygraaf experts in India is saved. And, we have worked out with Anygraaf a special price for our Indian customers. Three of our managers are now in Finland for training with Anygraaf. On return, they will train our experts in different locations in India.
DR: Do you have a client opted for this solution already?
AE: Yes, Dinamalar is Anygraaf’s first customer in India and is looking to comprehensively transform their operations in the next few months.
DR: What is the lead time for change over?
AE: Just for training the operators, it is one month. But actual implementation and customisations will take about six months.
DR: How did the deal go through?
AE: It required a lot of research on both sides to decide on the suitability of products and also on collaboration. We enabled Anygraaf to come here, travel to different newspapers and decide on the marketability. We needed each other. The deal was struck.
DR: Where does Digiscape stand with all this development?
AE: Digiscape Gallery continues to be a subsidiary of Cadgraf. All our core publishing courses are now available online, manned by dedicated online faculty, the candidates learn 24×7 with their mobiles/tablets.
DR: How strong are you with man power and can you mention your annual turnover?
AE: Sure, we have 150 employees and we ended 2014 with 2.1 m USD in revenue.
“For editorial workflow, the most important aspect is that editors do have full control of the way the article should look and feel for each channel. They can change the appearance, position and kind of media assets (images, videos, slide shows, etc) in the articles quickly and easily. They can preview the story as it would appear in each channel, edit if necessary and publish for print or digital from a single application. Social media is a big component of newspapers strategy in the present day. Anygraaf also assists to integrate directly with the likes of Twitter and Facebook.”
– Anand Jeeth (AJ), Director (sales), Cadgraf