Kennesaw, Ga. – A food-grade packaging company located in Richmond Hill, Ontario, E.B. Box is on track to experience exponential growth this year. Since the onset of COVID, the company has seen a tremendous pick-up in both the volume of its business and the demand for shorter turnaround times from its customers, who are seeking to keep grocery store shelves filled with their products. Installed in February 2020, E.B. Box’s new Speedmaster XL 106-6+L with Push to Stop technology and Prinect Production Manager from Heidelberg could not have come at a better time for the company, who has increased its capacity by 50-60% per shift – helping to accelerate both its growth and speed-to-market.
Set Up for Success
While E.B. Box has been in business since 1972, the company was primarily a carton finisher until 2015 when it installed a 2001 press from a competitive manufacturer and started printing in-house. This led to a period of significant growth, especially on the custom printing side of the company’s business. Seeing the opportunities that lie ahead, E.B. Box set forth in building its own custom facility and decided to invest in its growth by upgrading its print technology and replacing its older press.
According to Director of Business Development, Irfan Rajabali, selecting the Speedmaster XL 106 for this move was a relatively easy choice. “If we were going to take our growth as a company seriously, we needed to invest in a technology that would reliably exceed the expectations our customers have for us. It only made sense for us to invest in Heidelberg, the market leader, if we wanted to be the market leader.”
E.B. Box prides itself on being a “nimble” printer that can accommodate any of its customer needs – with turnaround times 2-3 weeks shorter than many of its competitors. “Prior to COVID, customers were very focused on price and did not always care that we could get them jobs faster than other printers. Now, customers are coming to us and asking how fast they can get a job. It’s really broken down a lot of barriers in conversations with new customers,” said Rajabali.
Due to the advanced automation, faster speeds, and flexibility of the XL 106, E.B. Box has been able to exceed the demands of both current and new customers – trusting that the press will print, “whatever we throw at it.” With its former press, makereadies could take hours to complete – with significant waste and manhours lost on non-sellable sheets. Now, E.B. Box has significantly increased its capacity to be able to assist new customers and transition into even shorter lead times with makereadies taking 75% less time and running at speeds of 18,000 sheets per hour. “With our old press, we just would not have been able to handle the types of requests that are coming in now. The Speedmaster XL 106 has really set us up for success,” said Rajabali.
Printing primarily on board stock, E.B. Box was impressed with the ease of changeover for the Speedmaster XL 106 to go from thinner 18 pt. board to printing thicker 32 pt. board – something that would cause problems on the company’s older press. E.B. Box first witnessed the press’s ease-of-use and flexibility at a demo in Print Media Center Atlanta. According to Rajabali, “It’s one thing to see a press running in a demo environment but another to really put it into full production. But we’re amazed – this press does exactly as advertised and then some.” The XL 106 runs so efficiently, in fact, that the company has eliminated a full production shift due to the increased throughput it’s achieving.
E.B. Box also decided to invest in Prinect Production Manager workflow to truly maximize the efficiency benefits of the press – creating seamless integration from prepress to press and beyond. Through the Production Manager subscription model, E.B. Box receives technical support for all fixes and upgrades, so it is always up-to-date on the latest versions and newest Prinect modules as they are developed. E.B. Box recently signed on for the Prinect Customer Portal, which will enable the company to have online interaction with its customers – creating even greater efficiencies when it comes to job approvals and job tracking.
In addition to advanced technology, E.B. Box chose Heidelberg due to its industry-leading service and parts availability. From installation to training, E.B. Box was impressed with the level of professionalism from Heidelberg’s SystemService team. “The whole installation experience was very turnkey for us. It made our lives less stressful, especially since the install was going on simultaneously with moving into a new facility,” said Rajabali. Training on the machine was also simple and straightforward, and E.B. Box was “surprised how quickly its operators were able to learn the technology. When I walk through the press room now, the team is always smiling. I could never say that before.”
About E.B. Box
E.B. Box Company has been manufacturing custom boxes and standard folding carton boxes since 1972 and is committed to providing high quality packaging solutions with exceptional customer service at a competitive price. With in-house die cutting, printing, and gluing capabilities, E.B. Box can produce a variety of folding carton boxes including food products, bakery and confectionary items, pharmaceutical and nutraceutical packaging, retail ready displays and boxes for a variety of other industries.
FRONT: Jeff Morrow, Plant Manager E.B. Box; BEHIND LEFT TO RIGHT: Irfan Rajabali, Director of Business Development E.B. Box; Fawad Faeiz, E.B. Box; Amin Rajabali, President E.B. Box; Reza Sohrabi, E.B. Box; Shafreen Munjee, Director Sales & Strategy E.B. Box.