Thunderbolt announced its partnership with the MBO Group at an event held on 17 February 2014 at its Johannesburg office.
Thunderbolt officially became an agent for MBO in Southern Africa on 1 January 2014. At the event, MBO’s Global Sales Director, Frank Bahmer and MBO’s Regional Sales Manager, Dieter Adam, spoke about trends in the finishing world and focused on MBO’s modular folding machine as well as MBO’s digital finishing solutions.
‘Our partnership with Thunderbolt was effective from 1 January this year. When we first visited Thunderbolt’s offices we were positively surprised by the organisation and its infrastructure. We were very satisfied by their  installation base and that is why we partnered with Thunderbolt,’ said Bahmer. 
MBO’s new M80 Flexible Folding System, with modular add-on capabilities, comes with modular design technology and can be reconfigured after purchase by adding or interchanging certain components according to a customer’s specific needs. This is a world first for folding machines and this modularity gives customers the freedom to add or interchange components to meet whatever demands the market brings without having to invest in options that may never be used.
Features include: 
– Infeed width of 83cm and production speed capability up to 230m/min.
– Belt drive. The proven MBO-belt drive for combination and buckle folding machines guarantees extremely quite quiet operation as well as maintenance-free periods. The auto belt tensioning element nearly almost eliminates the need for manual control or readjustment of the belt. 
– Due to its icon-based display layout, the M80 is very user-friendly. The menus are intuitive and easy to understand. 
– Slitter shaft cassette MWK (optional). The extractable slitter shaft cassette reduces changeover times drastically. This ergonomic feature slides out once the locking pin is released, allowing for easy access on the operator side.
‘Some advantages of the M80 folding machine are that it’s a standard manual machine that can be automated, it also allows feeder changes and can be upgraded,’ added Bahmer. 
MBO Product Manager at Thunderbolt, Dane van der Walt, said, ‘We have solutions from A to Z here at Thunderbolt, we were just missing a folding machine and already there are promising projects with regards to upgrading our clients’  and prospects’ folding machines.’