Kim Larson & Steve Engen, Viking Label & Packaging
Viking Label & Packaging added the CEI BossJet ‘powered by Domino’ hybrid press to expand their label printing capabilities. We caught up with the team at their Minnesota facility to learn more about the company, why they chose Domino, and the benefits realized in adding this hybrid press to their business.
The interview was captured in this video: VIDEO: Viking Label & Packaging
Mid-size converter with a small-size converter’s appeal
Kim Larson, President of Viking Label & Packaging is very proud of his company and colleagues. “In my 31 years of working at Viking Label, I have had the privilege of working with some outstanding and dedicated staff. Our team of 55 employees are second to none, and I could not be prouder to work with them day in and day out.”
Kim continues, “Viking Label & Packaging was founded in 1965, started basically in a garage here at our Nisswa location. We consider ourselves to be a mid-size label converter with a small-size converter’s appeal. Our customer base is the entire U.S. as well as Canada, and we primarily service the food packaging industry. That has evolved now to automotive, health & beauty, food & beverage. I think what differentiates Viking Label is our ability to be flexible. We pride ourselves in the work we do. We pride ourselves in our customer base. And our strength is keeping you as a customer and building that relationship for a long time.”
“It really was a win-win”
As Viking Label & Packaging continued to grow, they realized the benefits that digital provides, and saw an opportunity to take their business to the next level.
“When Viking first entered the digital market, we had essentially an entry-level roll-to-roll digital press. When the time came for us to upgrade, we did our due diligence in testing the multiple platforms that are out there and at the end of the day, Domino rose to the top with their quality of print, ease of use, and their service…along with our familiarity of CEI and their equipment.”
Steve Engen, CEO of Viking Label & Packaging, who has been with the company for 30 years, further explains, “When we started looking at the CEI BossJet, we were at a position where we wanted to take that next step to digital. The CEI BossJet gave us that opportunity to run jobs in a single pass, to turn jobs faster, and the sheer volume of work has significantly impacted our profits on that machine. It really was a win-win.”
Viking’s hybrid press configuration
Bryan Trees, Plant Manager of Viking Label & Packaging provides an overview of the configuration they selected for their CEI BossJet ‘powered by Domino’ hybrid press. “It all starts with a 40” unwind, moving down into a dual-sided web cleaner, the web continues down into a corona treater, up into our first UV flexo station where we can do priming or printing. It then travels to the Domino, expanded gamut… two whites, four-color process (CMYK), orange & violet. Traveling into the 2nd and 3rd UV flexo stations where we can print additional varnishes, spot colors, or UV adhesives. Lamination can be applied at the same time. After that we die-cut, going into either semi-rotary or full-rotary. Travels then to our waste windup where labels are stripped, down into the final shear or cutting station. And these two monitors control all functions on this press, so a single operator can run it.”
“Providing that shelf appeal that all brand owners are in search of”
This hybrid press has provided Viking Label & Packaging not only increased productivity, efficiency, and profitability, but also has enabled them to expand into other sectors, while helping brand owner customers stand out from the competition.
Kim says, “The CEI BossJet ‘powered by Domino’ has allowed us to enter markets that we would not previously have been able to enter. This hybrid press combines the digital components of the colors and variable data with the flexo ability to decorate… be it cold foil, or tactile varnishing, or pattern varnishing. Things like that are providing that shelf appeal that all brand owners are in search of. I really think it outperforms expectations.”
“Domino has been second to none”
Viking Label & Packaging described that while having a great press is important, the key to success is having the backing of service & support that a true business partner provides.
Steve says, “When we first purchased the machine, we actually sent pre-press personnel and press operators to the training, to physically see the machine, touch it, feel it, operate it. It was a huge benefit for them. Just the service & support that we’ve had, has been fantastic and a good partnership for us.”
Kim adds, “I would say that the Domino Difference would be the service and the hands-on approach by Chuck Stone and the salesforce. The service and the sales of Domino has been second to none, and I think they’re the leaders in the UV inkjet world. When we first put the Domino BossJet on our floor, we weren’t sure how we were going to put enough business on the Domino or move enough existing business onto the Domino. Now today, we’re ready for another one. On behalf of Viking Label, and our dedicated team of 55 employees, I want to say Thanks, Domino.”
For more information on Domino digital printing, please visit dominodigitalprinting.com.