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“Our product is unique in the field of process digitalization”

Julia Bernert

Published on 18.11.2019

Networks and cloud solutions are opening up new approaches to textile finishing too. Visitors to PSI, viscom and PromoTex, to be held at Düsseldorf Exhibition Centre from 7th – 9th January 2020, can learn how such solutions can be used to optimise processes and reduce costs. Smake will be demonstrating their process in action in the special “Make Your Shirt” area in Hall 13. CEO Thomas Drees explains just what makes his concept so special.

Just how important is viscom for you?

Thomas Drees: viscom is a very important date for us, taking place as it does in the early part of the year. It is not without reason the leading trade fair in Germany, where all the customers, manufacturers and sales reps who really are of interest to us meet up.

What would you like to show visitors to viscom?

Thomas Drees: We would like to demonstrate a new work process at viscom, together with our machine manufacturers. We would like visitors to the special ‘Make Your Shirt’ area to be able to experience at first hand just how easy it is, with the aid of a QR code, to configure and create a single customised garment and then be able to take it home with them.

What does it mean being in the spotlight like this at the trade fair?

Thomas Drees: Firstly, we would really like to thank viscom for giving us this break. For us, it means an enormous opportunity to present our digital production control software in action to a wide audience. Naturally, we hope that we will be able to win over a lot of visitors and manufacturers with our development.

What is so special about your product?

Thomas Drees: Our product is special insofar as it is currently unique in the field of digitalizing and optimising textile finishing processes. We feel it offers a lot of potential for shortening the required working time and an opportunity to significantly reduce the cost of producing a single item. It offers the possibility of producing custom orders on demand and being able to deliver them to the customer within a day or two.

Just where is there room for optimization?

Thomas Drees: Time is primarily saved thanks to the fact that the customer takes over part of the task. Like in any other online store, the customer has already put together the article before it goes into production. He has already entered his address and, at best, already paid for it – the first stage of automation. This is followed by the far greater optimisation that I do not have to do a data search: I need have any no worries as a machine operator and, as the company owner, I know I do not have to reckon with any major complaints post-processing. That also means staff savings in this area as well.

Who is your primary target audience?

Thomas Drees: Our software solution is chiefly aimed at somewhat larger producers. There would be little point in using this system if someone were merely to use a single DTG machine. But if you were to have a few machines, and then have a mix of different production stages, maybe also with a bit of embroidery in there too, then you could potentially be an interesting client for us. Longer term, companies will even be able to connect with one another via the cloud and distribute orders globally in such a way that allows delivery times to be shortened even further. This is what will give such companies the chance to compete against the Internet giants.

What do you hope to gain from viscom?

Thomas Drees: We would like to be able to establish a lot of new contacts, especially with prospective customers in Germany. We are already doing quite well internationally and would now also like to demonstrate to Germany just what is possible in a digital world and how other companies are already working. Our hope is to be able to work together with manufacturers in Germany and create a successful network here.

About viscom
Europe’s trade fair for visual communication is the annual trade fair for people who use the services of international advertisers. Taking place at the beginning of January, it is really the overture to the new business year. viscom presents solutions from across the whole world of visual communication, with a special focus on digital large format printing, advertising technology, textile finishing machines and POS communication. The next viscom takes place from 7th – 9th January, 2020 in Dusseldorf, parallel to PSI – Europe’s leading promotional product trade fair – and PromoTex Expo, the international trade fair for promotional, sports and workwear. Together, they form the biggest trade fair affiliation in Europe devoted to sales and advertising, and which anticipates more than 1000 exhibitors and around 30,000 trade visitors from all over the world.