MIAMI, FL—The first ever Packprint Summit Americas, a two-day conference and tabletop exhibition, held Nov. 5-6 at the JW Marriott Marquis was attended by 212 delegates. It featured three panel discussions that honed in on market trends, digital printing and converter challenges; as well as 11 briefings on strategic directions and success stories. Presentations were offered by a host of printers, designers, manufacturers, consumer product companies and industry analysts.
The event, sponsored by The Labelexpo Group, included approximately 10 full hours of networking time, split between the tabletop trade floor and a mid-afternoon harbor cruise.
At kickoff, FTA’s Bob Moran, FLEXO publisher, joined Danielle Jerschefske of Labels & Labeling, Tom Polischuk, Package Printing; and David Pittman, Packprint World, in assessing industry trends and directions. Moran reported that flexo printers are adapting to the changing face, format and function of every printed package and said they are integrating new technologies, improving both quality and efficiency and see themselves as financially stable, poised for growth and committed to continuous improvement.
It was noted that a recent poll of FTA members indicated that 72 percent of printers experienced sales growth in the past 12 months and 86 percent claimed to have bettered the bottom line five years running. Sixty percent of FTA printer members believe they can improve profitability In makeready, changeover and printrun. Integrated converting technologies are proving critical to their advancement and keeping flexo positioned as the print process of choice.
Digital’s foray into new business segments was seen as reflective of flexo’s experience with in-line converting and one-pass printing. With pressroom economics the driving force, customers are seeking product conformity achieved through print consistency and repeatability. They don’t really care how a job is printed, so long as quality is maintained and it comes out the same way every time.
Event highlights saw Evelio Mattos, creative director, Design Packaging, encourage attendees to “Collaborate. Listen. Set the trend. Live in the future!” Then:
Sarah Goldthwait of Powerful Yogurt told the story of the successful strategy behind Powerful Yogurt’s U.S. launch in March 2013. Its unique container, targeted at men, features a bold and distinctive label that is printed flexo by Phoenix Packaging
Jerry Henson, sales manager at Mark Andy delivered the keynote presentation “Changeover times are too long. Setup waste is too high. Too many steps are required in production. There are too many variables to control.” Later Henson noted that new mid-web flexo technology can lower overall costs and explained that streamlining printing work can increase productivity and revenue
Stan Usry from Radius Solutions remarked that printers must transist to proactive business management in the facre of constant calls for increased capacity without increased overhead. “Synchronize and optimize, Improve control, improve accuracy reduce spoilage and improve capacity. Answer the call. Become faster, better and less expensive.”
To close out the conference, Tom Zumbiel of Zumbiel Packaging, Paul Browning of Palmas Printing and Multi Packaging Solutions’ John Côté deliberated the challenges facing converters and explained how their firms succeed in differentiating their products and services form their competitors.