An increasing number of jobs processed by a growing number of customers need flexible and faster than ever end-to-end workflows
Ghent (Belgium) – Esko (www.esko.com) reports that in the past 12 months, over 300 million packaging jobs were processed through Esko workflows; a staggering number that shows significant increase over the previous 12 months.
This major milestone comes as Esko gears up for Labelexpo Americas, where it will demonstrate how the industry’s most trusted comprehensive and flexible packaging workflow is connecting with more key industry partners and their solutions. New features being announced include a new direct connection to HP Indigo’s Digital Front-End and a new, more user-friendly, browser interface for its bespoke Automation Engine.
“When we listen to our customers, they indicate the need to speed up time-to-market without any sacrifice in quality, while keeping costs in check”, says Udo Panenka, Esko’s President, “This explains the growing trend to adopting workflow automation: our more than 3,000 workflow customers around the globe confirm how their businesses are transforming thanks to Esko’s workflow automation, collaboration and integration with MIS / ERP systems.”
With decades of experience working with our customers in automating prepress, digitizing processes and integrating with third-party systems, Esko has amassed a unique portfolio of standard solutions that provide the industry’s strongest base for a streamlined packaging ecosystem. It covers the entire packaging supply chain and supports all the critical processes associated with the efficient production of packaging.
“Esko’s Packaging Connected truly is transforming the market. Process automation, seamless collaboration and implementing an end-to-end strategy of the packaging lifecycle are critical to achieving the objectives of brands and converters alike. This is the digital transformation the market demands and one that our customers benefit from. The 300-million figure confirms it,” concludes Panenka.
Visitors to Labelexpo will be able to see how Esko’s Packaging Connected approach transforms label converter workflows
At Labelexpo Americas (Booth 5202), Esko will demonstrate how Packaging Connected provides a complete labels and packaging ecosystem from concept through to the shop floor, shipping and logistics. It’s the world’s only comprehensive workflow serving the needs of brands and designers, premedia, production, and beyond to logistics and palletization.
Increased support for mixed printing technologies
Esko solutions are designed to support operations with mixed printing technologies from a long list of leading industry partners. New at Labelexpo is Esko’s a bi-directional connection to the HP Indigo press. Having access to and controlling the output of the press within the workflow optimizes press uptime and productivity.
Connecting with industry partners to reduce errors
At Labelexpo, Esko will showcase how it connects its broad portfolio of label technologies with those from a wide range of industry partners to assure ‘best-in-class’ workflow solutions.
Esko shares a booth with its Danaher sister companies X-Rite, Pantone and, for the first time, AVT. Esko will demonstrate how Esko’s automation and collaboration solutions are integrated with the X-Rite and Pantone color technology and AVT’s camera inspection solutions. This end-to-end integration is designed to address customer demand for faster time to market and ‘Right First Time’ production for smaller lot sizes while taking cost and waste reduction into account.
Industry best practices for automation and integration, also for smaller organizations:
- Standard Workflows for specific segments: After a long & close cooperation with its customers, Esko has launched the QuickStart versions of Automation Engine and WebCenter to deploy predefined label-specific workflows in just a few days. Users can reap the benefits of standard automation quickly after a fast and easy deployment.
- Standard integrations: The success of an end-to-end workflow relies on the ability to connect with the many MIS/ERP solutions used in the label industry. Esko will demonstrate standard integrations between the Esko ecosystem and a variety of third-party applications. This makes it easier also for smaller organizations to quickly become successful in the labels and packaging arena.
- Special focus will be on the Automation Arena where Esko is part of a bi-directional integration with the CERM system. The Esko ecosystem also enables bi-directional communication with EFI Radius.
- Browser-based user interface: To give users the choice to work with Automation Engine in a more intuitive way, the software now comes with a browser-based user interface, designed for digital natives who are used to swiping, dragging and pinching. It gives users the choice to work in Automation Engine with a more user-friendly interface.
- One platform beyond design and print: To make label and packaging production a streamlined process that is safe and cost-effective, a workflow is required that easily can go beyond design and print. A Packaging Connected workflow also can offer the right end-to-end tools from initial order entry through the finishing process, warehousing and logistics.
- Esko WebCenter not only provides the one industry platform of choice that enables collaboration among brands, premedia and converters, it is also tightly integrated with the overall workflow and enables seamless connections among these stakeholders and their systems. At Labelexpo, visitors will learn how WebCenter, can best serve their business goals.
- The 3D advantage: Visualization – Proofing – Pack Shots: Packaging Connected also offers the unique possibility to combine packaging artwork with structural CAD information. The wide range of Esko’s innovative and unique 3D applications helps speed the different design, approval and manufacturing processes.
- In addition to hyper-realistic visualization of labels including all colors, special ink and finishing effects in context, the combination of Esko’s workflow with its 3D tools makes it possible to automatically produce pack shots for use during the design phase but also in ecommerce and marketing campaigns. This unique application speeds up the pack shot process and eliminates the need for costly and time-consuming photo shoots.
Virtual 3D mockups also save time and money in proofing.
The recently announced partnership with Scodix aims to render realistic visualization of even the most complex packaging enhancements to ensure products stand out on the shelf.
Connecting Packaging tomorrow
“Right now, bringing new packaging to market can take around 198 days(*), yet brand owner CMO’s dream of bringing this down to 60 days(*) or less.” says Udo Panenka, Esko’s President, “The clear goal of our Packaging Connected strategy is to make this dream come true. We are committed to continue investing to deliver even more and stronger connections within our own hardware and software portfolio, with an ever-wider range of industry partners, and ultimately, with all the stakeholders in the packaging ecosystem.”
Esko Automation Engine QuickStart for Labels
(*) Source: Key Point Intelligence