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Heidelberg Printing Presses

For Sale by Owner | Brokers | Printing Press Dealers

There are really three types of entities out there that sell machines. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, and you should have a good understanding of them.

For Sale by Owner;

One is a printer who has a press they wish to sell. Generally they advertise it, and then sell it direct to you. The positive here is that generally it is a bit cheaper. The downside is the risk. Buying machines in this fashion seems straight forward, but it is in fact quite risky. You will now be responsible for moving the machine, its condition and its ability to produce. No one else is involved but you. Price is the single biggest blinding factor that gets people in trouble when buying a used press. You may be a great printer, skilled businessman and bright person, but if you don’t move machines of this nature for a living you will make expensive mistakes.


This is the pre-dominant entity selling machines. They sell machines they don’t own. The big, big, thing to be aware of here is there are two ways to sell a machine you don’t own; commission based brokerage, or by representing the machine as being owned by the broker.

The fee based way is to try and earn a commission on a sale the broker helps facilitate. Say for example a broker finds out you are interested in buying a press. He in turn knows about a press that would fit your needs located in Chicago, IL. Now he calls the person, or company, that owns the machine and informs them he has a customer who might be interested in the machine they have for sale. He would then negotiate a commission they would owe him if you go on to buy the machine. He then turns you over to the press owners and helps facilitate the sale. This is very common and operates just as a real estate broker woul d sell a home. They earn a commission.

The “representation of ownership” way for a broker to sell a machine they don’t own, is to try and represent themselves to the buyer as the owner of the machine. As this contract illustration shows, they will use your money to purchase the press from the owners. If the machine costs $500,000.00 they will take a deposit from you of 5%, $25,000.00 and secure the machine with the owners. They will then in turn use the contractual revenue stream they have with you to progressively execute the contract they have with the owner of the press. This is all perfectly legal, and is in fact quite common.

Your Contract with the Broker

Brokers Contract with Machine Owner

5% deposit upon signing contract

5% deposit upon signing contract

45% prior to disassembly

45% upon disassembly

45% prior to loading

45% upon loading

5% upon delivery

5% upon delivery

If you will note, all of your payments are due, “prior”, all of his payments are due, “upon”. The money flows from you, through the broker and then on to the owner of the machine.

Here is some language you want to look for to pick this scenario off. This language is found in a section generally titled, “Warranty of Title” which is spelling out that the seller, can in fact, sell the machine. All proper contracts have to state ownership.

Section A; Warranty of Title; XYZ Machinery, Co, Inc. warrants that it is, or will be, prior to sale, the lawful owner of the equipment that the same as of the date of sale to buyer is or will be free from all liens and encumbrances.

What this section says is that the broker, “XYZ Machinery Co, Inc.” is, or will be the owner prior to the sale, is or will be free from all liens …., it doesn’t say how soon prior to the sale. And in fact the words, “or will be” are telling you outright they may not in fact own it. When you wire transfer the money to them, they turn right around and wire transfer the money to the owner.

The question is why someone would assume all that risk in stead of negotiating a straight commission. That’s where the greed comes in. The commission might be $15,000.00 on a $500,000.00 machine. However, if you can successfully represent the machine as yours, you can charge whatever you want. Any price above and beyond what the owner wanted for it, the broker now gets to keep. Realistically the difference can be any where between the $15,000.00 commission and as much as $75,000.00 for selling the machine direct.

Printing Press Dealers;

This entity operates just like a used car lot. They buy machines from around the world, bring them back to their warehouse or plant, and then sell them to printing companies. Generally speaking you pay a bit more for a press from a dealer but the risk is generally lower. They often take on the responsibility of delivery, installation and warranty. They do in fact own the machine which eliminates all kinds of risk regarding ownership. And the fact that they laid out their own money to buy the press in the first place should tell you they have some confidence in that press.

You want to pay particular attention to the contract buying a press from a dealer because there will be so much more service involved. Your paying more from these guys so you want to make sure you get that in service. Also be aware they are quite skilled in contract negotiations and will invariably get the upper hand. Do not get distracted by price, which is there specialty.

  • There are three types of entities selling these machines; Brokers, Dealers, for Sale by Owner
  • Brokers sell presses two ways; Commission or by representing the machine as theirs
  • Dealers and Brokers will often try and use your money to buy a machine they want to sell to you
  • The contract has many clues as to who owns the machine

Ryobi Presses

How can I find out more information?

We would be happy to provide you with a prompt and professional quotation on a printing press thats right for you. When you request a printing press quote you will receive a courteous and professional response with options you can choose. Take me There

Points of Interest

To view new machinery you can visit Mitsubishi.

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