Risograph Printing Business

The Risograph printing business is offering a printing service using a Riso machine. Traditionally this business was more suited to printing single colour pages but with full-colour Risographs now available a more diverse printing range can be offered.

Before starting this business you need to look at your Supply, Value & Logistics chain.
Supply: Once you have acquired the machine(s), do you have access to ink, masters and paper at a good price?
Value: Do you have the skills, equipment and materials to run this business?
Logistics: How will you get the materials from your suppliers to you and how will you get your products to your customer?

That will give you an idea if this business is for you. One of the benefits of Riso printing over litho is that the machines are very compact, this business can be run out of a bedroom, or a garage if you have multiple machines.

Business Model
Riso printing is suited to large volumes of single copies, this is why it has been often found in schools where it is used to print letters given to pupils. A Riso is positioned somewhere between a photocopy machine and a lithographic machine in the sense that it is too expensive to print one or two copies as a master has to be made for every new design and a litho machine is probably better suited for tens of thousands of copies. So in the range of 100’s to 1000’s of copies.

Your Solution
When thinking about your offerings you have to look at what is suited to be printed in the 100’s to 1000’s range.
Business Cards
Community Ads

You need to look in the area you operate for your target market, who can make use of your service? Small businesses, churches, sports and social clubs. You also need to analyse competition in your area both coming from copy shops and litho printing shops.

How bulk print shops usually operate is that they will take a 50% deposit and balance when the job is done. You can also send a customer a proof via Email or WhatsApp for them to check and OK. You also need to know how long a job will take (and how much work you have in the pipeline) to make sure you can meet the client’s deadline.

Budgeting & Sales
Riso’s can print around 100 pages per minute depending on the model, that means you can potentially print 6000 pages per hour at full capacity. You have to factor in the time it takes you to print a page, the paper, the ink, the master(s) used and also put on something for wear and tear on the machine. The “wear and tear” money you put away in case you need spares, repairs or a new machine in future. Even if you can add a 10c per page for your time, this can still be a good business.

Skills required to run this business
How to use a Risograph Machine
How to connect a Risograph to a computer, make a master and print from PC
Graphic design skills

Equipment needed for this business
Risograph Machine
Computer with design/layout software

Materials needed in this business
Risograph Ink
Risograph Master