Having chosen to build up to the show with a whisper on the innovations presented, BOBST ended Labelexpo Europe 2017 with a roar; a huge number of visitors and the announcement of multiple sales deals closed on stand during the show, crowned BOBST’s most successful participation to date.
“We presented the new M1 Press, an effective choice to produce self-adhesive labels: robust, fully performing to BOBST quality standards and showing the first level of BOBST Digital Automation (laser-pre-register and automatic register). The new M5X, for Labels and Packaging, performed the Second Level of Digital Automation, total automation in print pressure and register adjustment without any manual intervention.” comments Antonio Bellosi, Bobst Firenze R&D Director, who added: “Probably the most impressive demonstration was the Digital Flexo Challenge; an M6 UV Flexo press at a converter’s plant in Milan (www.acm-plastic.it) and a “twin” M6 press on the BOBST LabelExpo booth were challenging each other on set-up time of a food packaging job, filmed “Live”, with a split screen satellite video connection. The 2 presses were filmed in detail, operating a job change-over “live” at almost 1.000 km apart, in front of hundreds of converters every day, twice a day. The 2 M6 presses have shown at LabelExpo “in real time” eight almost identical change-over times, proving that with the Third Level of Digital Automation (automated job exchange) any M6 Digital Flexo press, with any operator, in any site in the world, can change from one job to a complete new job in one minute, with an unlimited number of Pantones.”.
The portfolio of BOBST Digital Automation products was completed by the world premiere of the new Smart DigiMount for fully automated digitally assisted flexo plates mounting, without manual intervention from the operator. Matteo Cardinotti, MD of Bobst Firenze comments:” We believe in the self-adhesive label industry and in its creative hyper-flexible culture which is a distinctive bonus for the whole Labels and Packaging industry. M1, M5X and M6 are excellent presses to produce Labels and Flexible Packaging. We also introduced at LabelExpo an additional world premiere, the new M8 press Digital Flexo mid-web press for the production of Flexible Packaging or Folding Carton at high speed. This press is setting the new standards of our industry.” Mr. Cardinotti concludes:” In addition to our product advances, for almost 4 years, we have been fostering the successful implementation of the REVO Team for Extended Color Gamut “turn-key” solution, in cooperation with the industry leaders of the Flexo industry. New projects in cooperation with new partners are planned for the future. We are proud to be at the forefront of innovation, both in new technical solutions and in new industry visions.”
In terms of activities with brand owners and industry collaborations, BOBST, being part of the recently created FoodSafeUV group, co-hosted with the Labelexpo organizers and fellow group members the Safe4You seminar on 28th September. The FoodSafeUV group has been set up to align the perceptions of the food packaging industry and to recognize the level of food safety achieved by the latest UV Flexo printing technologies in relation to the most stringent food safety laws (Swiss Ordinance, Nestlé standards, EU and US standards etc.). Among other scopes, the FoodSafeUV group will eventually help the industry to develop an “easy” certification system that enables converting companies that comply with the standards to be awarded certification which guarantee the full safety of their output printed using UV inks and varnishes for indirect food contact.
“Contrary to a common misconception that perpetuates from the UV migration issues that happened in the 1990s, and thanks to the advances of technology and ink formulations, printing with UV ink and varnishes has now developed into the safest technology for indirect food contact” explains Paul Stoudmann, Strategic Business Development, Bobst Mex, who led BOBST brand owner activities at Labelexpo “The combination of low migration inks and on-press UV-dose measuring devices, like our BOBST UVTrackTM, which incidentally was the very first such system available in the industry, enables the checking and certifying of the safety of every printed meter of substrate in real time during printing. This level of food safety is much higher compared to the hazard of random sampling, which is most common in solvent and water based ink printing processes”.
Showing the extent of the BOBST unique partnership approach with both customers and industry suppliers, the Solution corner on the stand drew crowds of visitors keen on discussing the technical aspects of the application samples shown, as well as the opportunities that the BOBST equipment and the REVO Digital Process open up in terms of extending production capabilities or product differentiation. “The exchanges invariably highlighted the importance for converters to be able to rely on the availability of process and technological support on an ongoing basis” comments Daragh Whelan, REVO Product Manager at Bobst Firenze “I always look forward to these question because I can make a fine show of the unique capabilities of the REVO Academy set up together with partners of the REVO Technology Team and their equipment in the Competence center of Bobst Firenze, in Italy. There we can provide a variety of services to the converting industry, from ROI and TCO calculations through to hands-on testing and full manufacturing cycle from file to plate to print.”
The island stand which housed the displays of BOBST benchmark services was also overrun with visitors, who alongside a very comprehensive range of products and assistance programs, were treated to live demonstrations of new and innovative connective services through augmented reality. David Colombini, Service Director at Bobst Firenze comments:” After 126 years of Leadership in the Packaging industry, BOBST has developed advanced software, hardware and knowledge tools to support converters, through 24/7 services, global spare part availability at BOBST sites in all the continents and benchmarking procedures to measure the level of satisfaction of our customers. At LabelExpo, converters could observe a glimpse of the future, with the revolutionary Connected Glasses technology, to support the BOBST Service Team worldwide through virtual reality and “live” interconnectivity ”.
Maurizio Trecate, Sales Director at Bobst Firenze, takes stock of the LabelExpo participation in terms of commercial results at the show: “We have enjoyed a high number of closed deals at the show, this has been the most successful sales result ever in a LabelExpo show, supported by our product innovation and the successful cooperation of Bobst Firenze Label and Global BOBST Packaging Teams working together to provide the best opportunities to our converters worldwide.”