Print specialist Ricoh has entered a partnership with Swedish technology innovation company Coloreel to create a groundbreaking thread colouring unit for the textile industry. The landmark move will enable textile, fashion and sportswear businesses to evolve their offerings through high-quality instant colouring of textile thread while in production. By instantly colouring a white base thread during the embroidery production, operators can enjoy complete freedom to create unique embroideries without any limitations in the use of colours. The added vibrancy achieved allows businesses to offer a more striking portfolio and boast a genuine point of differentiation in an ever-changing market. The first product to make use of this technology is a thread colouring unit that is compatible with any existing industrial embroidery machine. Initial production is set for autumn 2018. The partnership is the result on ongoing international collaboration between Ricoh experts based in Japan and the UK with Coloreel engineers in Sweden. Ricoh will develop and build a major sub-system in the unit, based on the company’s advanced inkjet printing capabilities. This will be complemented by Coloreel’s colorisation technology.