IBDA News Vol.5 Interview Questionnaire07.05.2013
1. Why did GOZNAK decide to become an IBDA Partner?
Goznak is an innovative company aimed to satisfy its customers’ requirements to the utmost extent, opened to all forms of mutually beneficial cooperation. The events arranged by IBDA where Goznak specialists took part were organized very well, were information-intensive and provided real benefit to our work.
Goznak has a 195 year experience in production of security papers and banknotes. While participating in Association activities, our company would like to share our experience and future prospects of the industry with our colleagues. Moreover, we are attracted by the opportunity to work actively within the separate working groups of the Association. It will enable us to provide informative and technical support to designers in the selection and implementation of security features developed independently or jointly with the members of the Association.
2. Can you tell us a little about the history of GOZNAK?
Expedition of Storing State Papers was founded by the decree of Emperor Alexander I in Saint-Petersburg in the autumn of 1818. The enterprise was established to organize the production of banknotes secure from counterfeiting in Russia.
The foundation for its future prosperity was laid in the very beginning of the construction of the new facility. A distinguished engineer and architect Augustin de Betancourt created a unified manufacturing complex that integrated all stages of banknotes production – starting from sheet formation up to design development and subsequent printing. This innovation, unique for its time, makes Goznak (this is how the enterprise has been called since 1919) competitive even today, after almost two centuries. The Expedition was fast acknowledged as a front-line manufacturing facility of its time, and then became the best paper and polygraphic enterprise of the second half of the 19th and in the beginning of the 20th century.
The technical solutions proposed and realized in the 19th century by the Expedition specialists still have an impact on the technology of banknote manufacturing. It was in the Expedition that the first galvanoplastic workshop was opened, the first Russian postmarks and postcards were printed, and the first device for detection of counterfeits was developed.
After the 1917 revolution in Russia, the printing capacities of the Expedition were relocated to Moscow. The paper division remained in Petrograd (future Saint Petersburg).
In 1919 the Expedition was reorganized into the Administration of Factories for Storing of State Papers - Goznak. In the course of time, Goznak united paper and security printing factories as well as coin and medal minting facilities.
Today, Federal State Unitary Enterprise Goznak is an innovative company that has preserved and developed the traditions of the Expedition and appears as one of the world’s leading companies in manufacturing of banknote and security paper, banknotes and security printing products, coin and medal production.
Today Goznak employs around 9000 highly skilled personnel including the representatives of unique ‘goznak’ professions.
3. How would you describe GOZNAK today in the context of being a leader and innovator in the international banknote arena?
More than 190 year Goznak’s experience presents today a synthesis of traditions coupled with the state-of-the-art technologies, in-depth professional competence, research and development expertise and continuous activity in creative and scientific research.
Goznak comprises two modern, highly efficient mints, three hi-tech and high-performance printing factories, two paper mills, a research institute and a design center.
All branches of Goznak, including mints, are located in the European part of Russia.
Goznak possesses significant financial resources (annual turnover is about 1.4 billion dollars on average) and qualified staff and offers to its customers a range of reliable solutions for security products. The company successfully competes with other coin producers, banknote printers, banknote paper producers and other security products in the domestic and international markets.
Goznak is an undisputed leader in production of coins and security products, gold sponsor of banknote and coin exhibitions and conferences, close partner of Interpol and supplier of products to more than 20 countries. The company possesses numerous patents for the technologies it has developed.
4. Does GOZNAK have any specific technology that banknote designers should be aware of? If so can you please tell us a little about it?
Goznak possesses unique technical and technological developments. The company has many patents for technologies that we offer to our customers.
Goznak designed, manufactured and put into operation a unique automated micro engraving precision complex. Independent control of the cutting tool along 4 coordinates enables to make intaglio forms by the special cutters that resemble engraver’s chisel. Intaglio engravings made on this complex are indistinguishable from the ones made by classical manual engraving.
Goznak has large experience in developing 2D-Iris technology – a joint development with KBA NotaSys. Super Simultan IV with 2D-Iris section enables to produce interesting design solutions. Moreover, smooth and sharp color transitions in any direction and without rasterizing the lines provide a high level of security.
Goznak has unique VFI technology which ensures the appearance of the wide threads with the varied form windows on surface during the production of security paper. This technology guarantees high security of the products and extends the designers’ opportunities in banknote design. Goznak can share its experience of using a variety of security threads with optically-variable and kinetic features.
At the first IBDA conference Goznak presented optically-variable feature MVC and its potential opportunities in using in products design. Since then, Goznak experts have developed a complete series of optically-variable features that require only offset and intaglio printing and their implementation is limited only by designer’s fantasy.
5. Does GOZNAK believe that the IBDA will succeed in opening/improving communication between the industry and banknote designers?
Yes, undoubtedly, communication provided by IBDA between banknote designers and the manufacturers in the industry has a positive impact not only on increasing the number of successful projects. It affects the development of the industry as a whole, because it provides a direct two-way communication.
6. Why does GOZNAK believe it is important for banknote designers to know about your organisations’ technology, products or services?
Information from the companies with large positive experience in the market of security products, which include Goznak, extends horizon and qualification of designers. IBDA provides an opportunity not just to inform colleagues about the new solutions in the field of banknotes security. During the workshops, round tables there is a substantive discussion of the experience of the participating companies, and designers get the practical knowledge and study the opportunities of combination of artistic solutions and security technologies on example of the colleagues’ work.
7. Will GOZNAK participate in IBDA Working Groups on subjects such as Machine Readability, Intaglio Engraving, Substrates and Durability?
Yes, Goznak would like to participate in these working groups. The company's specialists have enough experience and qualification that may be useful in preparing the recommendations offered to the banknote design makers by the Association.
8. How does GOZNAK see banknote design evolving over the next 10 years?
In our opinion, a number of restrictions connected with technologies and security features development and application will increase. However, the development of automated facilities in preparing computer designs and printing technologies will allow extending the designers’ opportunities. Designers will be able to create hi-tech products with attractive friendly design. Sure, the design of banknotes will be affected by the national cultural traditions and regional trend of design development. However, due to globalization and the use of similar technological solutions, banknotes of different countries and regions are likely to retain some signs of similarity.
9. Where do you see the biggest opportunities for our industry in the domain of banknote design and new technology?
The development of the industry in terms of design and new technologies should go in the direction preventing the use of modern available technical means (copier, photo) for imitation and counterfeiting of banknotes. In addition, it should be directed to the real increase of banknotes durability in difficult climatic conditions.
10. Where do you see the biggest threats/challenges for our industry?
The most important threats are:
- continuing downward trend in cash payments;
- increasing competition between producers amid increasing coordination between the counterfeiters;
- the development of generally accessible high-performance and high-quality digital technologies and equipment.
11. In summary, what is the main message GOZNAK would like to pass on to the international banknote designer community?
The main Goznak mission is meeting the needs of the customers in providing them with products and services that ensure reliable currency circulation.
12. How can an IBDA Member find out more about GOZNAK?
Goznak site: http://www.goznak.ru/en/
International Exhibitions and Conferences
13. And finally, if GOZNAK had one wish for banknote design/designers, what would it be?
To make a beautiful banknote series that would hit fancy of the majority of the population and receive high praise and recognition of the banknote designer community.