Pimcore Pim + PDFreactor

A revolution in creating print catalogs!

Pimcore provides extended support for Cross-Media-Publishing and Web-to-Print initiatives. Pimcore stringently follows a single-source-publishing approach. The PIM module is the central data hub, which supplies enriched data to multiple output channels, such as websites, newsletters, online shop, and print catalogs. It provides highly structured master data including all corresponding multimedia assets to desktop publishing products like Adobe® Indesign® and Quark® Xpress®.

But Pimcore is not just an open-source PIM: It integrates customer experience management for the creation of full-featured product catalogs and price lists without using any desktop publishing software. Ready-to-print PDFs can be created in a user-friendly interface in Pimcore based on up-to-date product data, prices and high-quality images. They can even be created fully automated, based on a predefined layout.

The most efficient and flexible way to create ready-to-print documents like catalogues and price lists is to use Pimcore in combination with RealObjects PDFreactor. Together they build a solid stack for automated database publishing and Web-to-Print.

Flagship projects

Building Services Equipment Product Catalog

PDFreactor + Pimcore PIM facilitate making of high-quality 680+ page product catalog within B2B shop

Product Catalogue

Headquartered in Austria, the Walter Bösch GmbH & Co KG (about 650 employees and 100M EUR revenue p.a.) is a specialist manufacturer for heating, ventilation and air conditioning technology. A high-quality print catalog is an essential tool for hundreds of contractors and distributors selling the Bösch technology across various countries.

Initial situation
Several Bösch employees used to work months on the creation of the catalog, as product data had to be collected, verified and updated. An integral filling system for the thousands of product pictures did not exist and the overall process depended on normal desktop publishing programs.

The PIM system is the central data hub for all kind of product information (text, technical data, pictures, videos, links etc.) and delivers up-to-date data to various output channels. Updates of the product information have to be done only in the PIM system.

The Bösch ERP system provides the basic product data and pricing information, which is automatically captured by the Pimcore PIM system using an ERP-PIM interface. The catalog editor enriches the product data in the Pimcore PIM system through additional information such as, text, pictures, links etc. The Bösch B2B shop as well as the catalog production uses this data.

For more info about the Bösch B2B shop and catalog see also the Pimcore case study.

The catalog is directly created in the Pimcore PIM system using a plugin. The catalog editor creates single chapters and adds content pages, which are directly filled with data from the PIM system. The Pimcore PIM plugin allows the PDF creation any time. Additional settings, e.g. the integration of printer marks, can be done optionally.

Bösch uses a printer‐friendly PDF (DIN A-4, 32MB) for downloads and electronic distribution. Within the PDF each product is directly linked to the Bösch B2B shop.

A print compliant PDF (extract, 12 MB) with a size of about 170 MB – including printer marks, high-resolution images and CMYK color space compatibility – went to a print shop for the production of hardcovers.

The 680+ page Bösch product catalog has become an Elements flagship project, deeply showing the strategic value of PDFreactor for the Web-to-Print process within the Pimcore PIM solution. The highlights of the PDFreactor implementation include:

  • Cross-reference
  • Table of contents
  • Multi-column layout
  • CSS transforms
  • Tables & floats
  • Printer marks
  • CMYK colors
Wood Flooring Price List

RealObjects PDFreactor + Pimcore enable print-ready price lists via B2B/B2C sales tool for global distribution network

mafi is an international natural wood flooring brand, standing for a family-owned business that was founded more than 100 years ago, producing innovative products for kitchens, baths, living rooms as well as commercial projects exclusively in Austria. mafi Naturholzboden GmbH also offers several additional solutions such as stairs, skirting, as well as care and installation materials. Their tailor-made products are sold in more than 50 countries, achieving a turnover of about 22 million EUR in 2017.

All product, sales and marketing information is structured and consolidated from 3rd party systems. A central master data management process feeds all relevant IT systems, such as PIM, CMS, DAM and e-commerce and keeps track of all changes. The mafi B2B/B2C e-commerce portal and related price list production retrieves data for thousands of different product variants from those systems.

Using PDFreactor as plug-in within Pimcore enables mafi to easily and quickly update price lists, maintaining consistent layout standards without having design and typesetting costs. Cost reduction in the five-digit range, considerable time-savings as well as constant performance have been achieved.

Christian Hemetsberger, mafi Communications Manager & Project Manager for this project says: ”With the web-to-print solution of our price lists, based on our Pimcore system and PDFreactor, we have been able to almost eliminate annually occurring and recurring tasks. In addition, the data structure allows us to form new combinations of languages, currencies and units, which is becoming increasingly important for our B2B customers, especially in the individualization of our offers. The concept has also been kept open, which enables us to follow up different brochures and documents – all from a single source. In any case, most important for a web-to-print project is data quality, as it foundation for such technologies.”

For more info about the mafi B2B/B2C ecommerce portal see also the Pimcore case study.

The fully automatic database publishing is done based on the consolidated master data. The generated print-ready price lists generated with PDFreactor serve as a basis for all mafi stores and distribution partners in more than 50 countries, covering: 17 different price lists, 9.000 product variants, 5 languages, 6 currencies, 10 different units.

Print-ready PDFs are created directly within the Pimcore system using PDFreactor as plug-in. When rendering, the print is first rendered to HTML and then rendered to PDF. PDF rendering itself is done by PDFreactor, which comes with an out-of-the box feature to add (technically done by an additional CSS-file) printer marks to the PDF.

mafi uses a compact PDFs (DIN A-4, 5.9 MB) for downloads and electronic distribution via website and e-mail. Print compliant PDFs (extract, 3.5 MB) including printer marks, high-resolution images and CMYK color space compatibility are sent to a print shop for the production of hardcopies.

The mafi 130+ page main price list demonstrates the PDFreactor capabilities within the Pimcore web-to-print process. Key PDFreactor features used are:

  • Multi-column layout
  • CSS transforms
  • Tables & floats
  • Printer marks
  • CMYK colors
Gardening Product Catalog

RealObjects PDFreactor + Pimcore simplifies typeset-quality gardening product catalog production

Windhager stands for competence, creative, market-oriented product innovations in the field of insect stops, pest control, gardening accessories as well as sun and privacy screens. Their products encourage the beauty and natural diversity of gardens and increase economic yields. Windhager products also contribute to a more comfortable life around the house and on the patio. Established in 1983 and headquartered in Thalgau, Austria, Windhager Groups’ 250+ employees assure 80+ million turnover p.a. within 25 European countries.

The leading system for article data is an ERP system (self-developed), which is connected via web services to the PIM system (Pimcore). Digital assets are stored in an external DAM database (CELUM). All marketing titles and texts are entered, translated and stored in Pimcore, pictures and videos in CELUM, but they are synchronized between CELUM and Pimcore so that every digital asset is available in Pimcore.

Every catalogue is realized with the Pimcore module “Web-to-Print”, which is integrated in the Pimcore suite and allows the marketing team to create a catalogue, every chapter and subchapter and add all relevant products to the catalogue. Windhager decided to add every product manually via a search menu and exclude every variant which is deprecated automatically. When creating new catalogues marketing can copy an old catalogue and needs to add only new items manually.

Catalogues are single language, so creating a new catalogue with a new language means to create a referenced copy to the original catalogue and make only the changes needed for this specific language. Changes in the original catalogue are automatically transferred to all referenced catalogues.
The template for each catalogue is programmed with HTML/CSS and PHP and can be developed by every web designer. The powerful PDFreactor plug-in allows Windhager to create the PDFs for print (high picture quality) and web download (low picture quality) with suitable margins, breaks, printer marks within seconds. It is not necessary to start an interface or synchronization job or wait for hours to see the work done before in Pimcore as a PDF, nor is it necessary to work in InDesign to make a printable PDF.

After few hours of work, the editorial staff is able to check the first chapters and correct mistakes or wrong data, the complete process of creating and error correction is done in one system which reduces cost & time and increases the process performance.

Stefan Windhager, Windhager Managing Director says: „Considering the lead time and cost reduction of the catalog production, we received the expected return on investment within the first year. Employees involved in the process can now focus on quality and improvement, knowing to get it done in time – every year“

More info about the Pimcore PIM Web-to-Print functionality can be found here.

Windhager utilizes a compact PDF (DIN A-4, 23 MB) for downloads within its websites and for electronic distribution via e-mail. A print compliant PDF (extract, 18.5 MB) with printer marks, high-resolution images and CMYK color space compatibility is sent to a printing house for the production of hardcopies.

The Windhager 160+ sophisticated gardening catalog shows PDFreactor’s features and capabilities as part of the Pimcore web-to-print functionality, among others:

  • Table of contents
  • Tables & floats
  • Printer marks
  • CMYK colors

PDFreactor Pricing and Deployment

The PDFreactor CPU pricing scheme and Software License Agreement (PDF) is applicable.

The PDFreactor Webservice and Docker-Image enables the smooth integration of a PDFreactor CPU License into the PIM module in order to streamline your web-based print processes. To receive a quotation directly from RealObjects or to securely purchase a PDFreactor license from our online reseller ShareIt using a major credit card (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, JCB, Diners Club), wire transfer, Paypal or check, please contact support@realobjects.com

Integration and Usage

Documentation on how to create print-ready PDFs in general can be found on the Pimcore documentation web site in the chapter Print Documents. If you are looking how to directly create and return a PDF instead of HTML from your controller, please have a look at the Pimcore documentation web site, chapter Rendering PDFs. A fully working demo application can be found at https://demo-advanced.pimcore.org/admin (User: admin, Password: demo)


For availability, documentation, technical support etc. please contact info@pimcore.com. RealObjects does not provide any support related to the integration of the PDFreactor into the Pimcore platform.

About Pimcore

Pimcore ScreenshotPimcore is an award-winning data management and customer experience management software. Enterprises choose Pimcore because it seamlessly integrates 4 applications – Product Information Management (PIM), Digital Asset Management (DAM), Customer Experience Management (CMS/UX) and eCommerce.

The software is licensed open-source and available free of charge. The company specializes in business consulting, solution consulting, integration & implementation, professional services & support.

Automating business processes becomes easy with Pimcore’s connectivity to any external software or cloud infrastructure. Pimcore is recognized as Gartner ‘Cool Vendor’ 2018.

Strategic Partnership

elements Logo

elements.at New Media Solutions GmbH is a leading full-service digital agency focused on creating superior digital customer experiences that bring brands and customers closer together. Headquartered in Salzburg, Austria, it consists of a team of more than 100 developers, consultants and designers, all working together to build exceptional digital solutions for ambitious international clients.

The Elements team created Pimcore in 2009 and have been advancing it ever since. With over 82,000 installations in 56 countries, Pimcore has become the leading open-source experience and data management platform.

Elements partners with RealObjects, enabling Pimcore clients to utilize best-of-breed automated database publishing, variable data printing (VDP) and web-to-print functionality based on RealObjects PDFreactor.


For more information about Pimcore PIM + PDFreactor please contact:

pimcore GmbH
Gusswerk Halle 6
Söllheimerstraße 16
5020 Salzburg

Telephone: +43 662 876 60 62 30
Facsimile: +43 662 876606 – 99
E-Mail: info@pimcore.com