Toshiba and Avapac save time and money for the Erotica Show

The Erotica trade show and exhibition has reduced costs, ticket printing times, long queues at registration and curtailed the opportunity for forgery by introducing the B-SA4TP printer from Toshiba and LABTIC software from Avapac.

A family owned business, Erotica started in 1997 with just 8,000 visitors and 60 exhibitors.  Aimed at the male and female ABC1 market, the exhibition aims to bring all things erotic to a main-stream audience in an open and comfortable environment.  The show has grown in popularity and with the addition of stage shows and other events it now has some 250 exhibitors and over 80,000 visitors during the 3 day show period.

The printing solution we used when the show had relatively small numbers of visitors was fine, but as we grew it became apparent that the printer could not cope with the increasingly high volumes of tickets and caused bottlenecks of visitors who had not pre purchased tickets at the show entrance. Said Chris Christodolu, Planning Manager Erotica.  We needed to improve our existing system and realised that there were also opportunities not only to streamline the printing process but also to save costs. Avapac, one of our existing long-term suppliers, recommended that we used their LABTIC software in conjunction with Toshibas  B-SA4TP printer which is renowned for its output quality.

Erotica started using the Toshiba B-SA4TP solution prior to the 2007 show.  The benefits were immediate.   Previously, advance tickets were manually fed into the printer which only had the capacity to print 3,000 tickets a day.  Due to reliability issues the printer could only be operated during normal working hours thus making the process time consuming and lengthy.   Now with a duty cycle of 8,000 tickets per day the new printing solution from Toshiba prints tickets over night, ready to post to customers in the morning.   A task that would have taken over 10 days and 80 man hours can now be achieved overnight and importantly unsupervised.

The Toshiba/Avapac solution has an impressive printing speed of 1 ticket per second which is essential to achieve quick customer throughput during the peak show period.

Some 30 - 50,000 customers do not pre book so we need to be able to print a large proportion of tickets at the show. said Chris.  This process used to cause long queues. Using the Toshiba solution we were amazed at the improved speed of entry especially at busy periods.  We were also impressed by the quality and professional look of the tickets - perfect for the image of the Erotica.

With such a large footfall and ticket prices ranging from 14 - 25, Erotica had experienced problems with forgery.    Tickets had been produced on pre-printed stock which were then overprinted and manually stamped with a serial number making them easy to copy.  To overcome this Avapac proposed a thermal material along with specialist printing and foiling techniques, the quality of tickets would immediately show any colour variations on any attempted counterfeit tickets, enabling Erotica to instantly detect fakes.

The superior functionality of the Toshiba B-SA4TP has also enabled Erotica to make a number of enhancements to the ticketing process.  These include, improving the style and design of the tickets, and using the mail merge facility to personalise pre-ordered tickets to meet customers specific requirements.  Added to which, the capability to include a sponsors logo has the potential to   create opportunities for marketing revenue with an estimated value in the region of 10,000.

With the improved solution both in terms of quality, reliability and speed of output Erotica expected that they would see a return on investment over a number of years.  However the cost of the total solution including hardware and consumables was 1,500 cheaper than the cost of the pre-printed ticketing stock used in 2006. And Erotica estimates it will see savings of over 60% in 2008.

 Our new ticket printing solution has far exceeded our expectations in terms of speed, quality, ease of use and overall capability.  Avapac has provided us with excellent service designed specifically to meet our requirements, at a very affordable price.  We would highly recommend the Toshiba/ Avapac solution to any company requiring professionally produced tickets on any scale.

Eroticas plans for the future include hosting Erotica themed parties at various venues across the UK using the flexible, robust, Toshiba/Avapac printing solution for all ticketing requirements.


TOSHIBA TEC Europe (TERIS) manages product planning, marketing, sales, service support and distribution of barcode printers, point of sale systems, cash registers, scales, peripherals and software information systems throughout Europe, the Middle East and Africa. As a total solution provider, TOSHIBA TEC Europe offers a complete package from consulting and system design to system installation, operation and maintenance.

Headquartered in Brussels, Belgium TERIS has three divisions: the Retail division; the Auto ID division and the Services division.

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