News | New Products

Converting Industry News, Part 2

Covering the Full Spectrum of Industry News, Events & Activities


Part 1 | Part 2

ACQUISITIONS
KBA Buys the Rest of Metronic

WÜRZBURG, GERMANY—Koenig & Bauer (KBA) has followed up its acquisition in early 2004 of a 73.9% stake in Metronic, Bavaria, Germany, with the purchase of the remaining shares from company founder Torald L. Rohloff for an undisclosed sum.

Metronic manufactures ink jet, hot stamping, laser, and thermal transfer ID devices for industrial applications, plus UV offset printing systems for CDs, DVDs, DCRs, and plastic cards.


FTA to Study Flex-Pack Segment
RONKONKOMA, NY—The Flexographic Technical Assn. (FTA) has commissioned its first-ever market research study on the flexible packaging segment of the flexographic printing industry. Data will be collected from flexible packaging and unsupported film converters, industry suppliers, end-users, and packaging buyers via Web-based questionnaires; fax and e-mail broadcasts; and extensive personal interviews and focus groups. June 2005 is the targeted date for completion of the study.

FTA also reports it recently sponsored three consecutive international seminars in Chile, Mexico, and Argentina. A collective 511 Latin American flexographers representing more than 20 countries attended. During the seminars winners were announced in the 3rd Latin American Excellence in Flexography Awards, organized by United Engravers Mexicana.

For more information contact FTA at 631/737-6020 or visit flexography.org.


Michelman Adds Kemira Lines
CINCINNATI, OH—Michelman has acquired Kemira’s anti-skid and specialty coating lines sold to the paper converter market. As a result, Michelman has added the Kemira line of coatings to its existing silica-based, nonskid coating line. Rob Toth, formerly Business Group manager for Kemira, joins Michelman.


Scholle Adds French Company
NORTHLAKE, IL—Scholle Corp. has acquired 100% of the shares of Flextainer SA. The business will be a wholly owned subsidiary of Scholle and continue to trade as Flextainer at its headquarters in Schalbach, France, near Strasbourg. Flextainer specializes in the development and manufacture of systems and accessories for liquid packaging, especially for the wine industry.


Sonoco Buys POP company
HARTSVILLE, NC—Sonoco has acquired POP display company CorrFlex Graphics, Statesville, NC. Sonoco says the acquisition of the company, now known as Sonoco CorrFlex, enhances Sonoco’s ability to provide customers with consumer packaging solutions that begin with initial package design, prototyping, and testing and end with retail-ready, fully packed POP displays.


A Company is Born
BOLINGBROOK, IL—A new company backed by individual investors has acquired substantially all assets of Chapco Carton Co. The new company will operate as Chicago Packaging Inc., with Charles G. Kiolbasa Jr. as president and Brian Rujawitz as chief operating officer.



OPENINGS
SSCC Opens Innovation Center

CHICAGO, IL—Smurfit-Stone Container Corp. has opened an Innovation Center at the Carol Stream, IL, facility. Director of Packaging Innovation Tony Hancock explains, "[The Center] serves as a creative venue for brainstorming and collaborating with our customers on innovative packaging ideas, as well as an internal resource center for our new product innovation champions, business development, and research and development teams."


Lab Shows Off Laser Marking
WIDNES, CHESHIRE, UK—Sherwood Technology announces the opening of an Applications Laboratory said to demonstrate the future possibilities of laser marking. The company adds it will enable current and potential licensees and end-users to test the final results of using Sherwood’s color-change technologies to mark their products using a wide range of lasers.

All of Sherwood’s color-change solutions are available through a series of application licensing agreements and strategic partnerships.


Re-Located Tech Center Ready to Go
PAWCATUCK, CT—Davis-Standard announces the re-opening of its Technical Center, which recently relocated to the company’s primary facility in Pawcatuck. The center has three extruders set up for lab trials and is ready to accommodate customer trials.

John Christiano, director of extrusion process technology, explains, "The Technical Center is now co-located with our systems test area, giving us the resources to focus on systems technology and not just screw design. We’ve improved our capacity to support customers across all applications while maximizing our research and development capabilities."



DIVESTITURES
UCB Sells a Division

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM—UCB has signed an agreement to sell its Surface Specialties business to Cytec Industries for (euro)1.5 billion, of which (euro)1.3 billion is in cash and (euro)0.2 billion is in shares of Cytec.

The current organization and facilities of Surface Specialties are expected to be maintained as they are, including the division’s worldwide headquarters in Brussels. Ben Van Assche, the current CEO of Surface Specialties, will remain in charge of the division and will be elected a corporate officer and appointed member of the Cytec Executive Committee.



ENVIRONMENTAL NEWS
Vanguard in Recycling Alliance

DELRAY BEACH, FL—Sun Valley Worldwide, a global recycling and environmental services company and founding member of the NextLife recycling cooperative of industry leaders, reports Vanguard Plastics, Dallas, TX, has joined the alliance. Sigma Stretch Film Corp., Lyndhurst, NJ, also is a founding member.

The alliance is designed to recycle—not dispose of—used stretch film, grocery bags, and other recyclable materials from the marketplace.


Recycling Laws Need a Push
RICHMOND, VA—Beverage makers and oil companies could be doing more to improve recycling of their packaging and products in the US, according to Michele Raymond, publisher of State Recycling Laws Update. Raymond voiced this opinion as she spoke to the Virginia Recycling Assn.

She pointed out that despite spending $15 billion/yr on packaging waste recovery, European packaging consumption went up 8%/capita between 1997 and 2001, though recycling rates are higher. Her suggestion? State and local governments use landfill bans as an effective way to push recycling of various packaging and products. She also said states should band together and push the beverage industry to fund national education programs and large-venue recycling.

Only California among the states requires fees directly from oil companies to help fund used oil management, Raymond added, and only two states are recycling used oil bottles.

"If the oil industry had to ensure recovery of these plastic bottles, it would help fund good technology nationwide to improve plastics recycling overall," Raymond said. In this area, she noted, the US lags behind Europe and Japan.

For more information visit raymond.com.



SHOW NEWS
P Show on the Way

STUTTGART, GERMANY—P, the International Trade Fair for Process-Oriented Packaging Production, will be held June 15–18, 2005, in Stuttgart. Organizer Messe Stuttgart expects approximately 200 exhibitors and 15,000 visitors. The International Packaging Inst. is a partner in the show.

A three-day symposium accompanying the show will address one topic each day: packaging converting workflows; smart packaging systems; and advanced converting technologies. For more information visit p-messe.de.




Event Changes in Milan
MILAN, ITALY—The Centrexpo board of directors is discontinuing the GEC show and postponing the October 2005 Grafitalia/Converflex until May 9–13, 2006. It will be held at the Fiera Milano exhibition complex in Rho-Pero. The following Grafitalia/Converflex is scheduled for May 2009.

For more information contact Centrexpo at +39 (0) 2 319109 215 or visit centrexpo.it.


Paperloop Headed by New Team
BOSTON, MA—Paperloop has a new senior management team headed by rod Young, formerly senior VP of the Paperloop Information Products Group. He replaces Ian Johnston as president and CEO. Johnston will continue with Paperloop in a consulting role with the 2005 Tissue World and CMM Intl. trade shows.

Other new team members include Robert Berg as CFO; Liza Turner as senior VP, marketing and sales; and Keith Balter as senior VP-Analytical and Editorial Products.

Paperloop reports the change reflects the company’s increased emphasis on analytical and subscription-based products following the recently announced sale of the Tissue World franchise to CMP Asia.


IoPP to Support Canon Shows
LOS ANGELES, CA—The Inst. of Packaging Professionals (IoPP), Naperville, IL, has agreed to give active support to the WestPack, SouthPack, and EastPack trade shows of Canon Communications. In addition to staffing a booth at each show, IoPP will assist in promoting them to its membership.

For more information on any of these shows, contact Canon at 310/445-4200 or visit canontradeshows.

ASSOCIATION NEWS
EMA, USPS Study Concluded

ALEXANDRIA, VA—The EMA Foundation for Paper-Based Communications has published the final report of the Intelligent Document Task force. "The Internet of Things" is a summary of the work of the task force from 1997–2003 and is a joint effort between the USPS and the EMA.

Two of the report’s ten recommendations are: RFID technology is still to expensive for use on individual mail pieces; and the USPS must continue to be aggressive in looking at new technologies to both print stamps and identify each stamp in order to protect revenue and offer customers secure tracking and tracing ideology.

The report is available to EMA members for $150 and nonmembers for $300. For information contact Kim Moses at 703/739-2200; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..



EXPANSIONS
Arkay Expands in Virginia

RICHMOND, VA—Arkay Packaging Corp. will invest $11 million to expand its EastPark Commerce Center facility and create 75 new jobs, according to an announcement by Virginia Governor Mark R. Warner. Virginia competed successfully with North Carolina and New York for the project.

Said Warner, "Arkay has experienced Virginia’s tremendous workforce firsthand. I’m delighted the company has decided to reaffirm its confidence in the Commonwealth by expanding its business in Botetourt County."

Adds Arkay president and CEO Mitchell Kaneff, "...Arkay has enjoyed great success in Virginia, thanks in large part to continuous state support and the pro-business climate that the Commonwealth provides."



AGREEMENTS
Comexi, Bomac Team Up

FEEDING HILLS, MA—Comexi North America announces an agreement with Bomac, Syracuse, NY, that provides for the exchange and sharing of documentation and technical and business information.

Comexi provides gearless technology standardized with Eurotherm drives and Siemens drives and controls. Bomac is a certified integrator for both products and will provide technical support to Comexi and its customers.

It will also be able to provide project management and engineering services to assist Comexi in pursuing business and market segments that require these skills, especially with respect to the integration of in-line equipment from various manufacturers.



PURCHASES
IP Fine Papers Go To Mohawk

COHOES, NY—Mohawk Paper Mills has signed a letter of intent to purchase the Fine Papers Business from International Paper, Stamford, CT. This includes the writing, text, and covers papers and artist products segments. The transaction is subject to approval by Mohawk’s board of directors and completion of due diligence and financing.

Included in the purchase are the Hamilton, OH, paper mill; the Saybrook, OH, converting facility; and the Westfield, MA, Artists Products converting operation. Also included are related sales, marketing, and customer service staff as well as the Strathmore, Brite Hue, Via, and Beckett brands.


Flexicon Bought by Ampac
CINCINNATI, OH—Ampac Packaging has purchased Flexicon, Cary, IL, for an undisclosed amount.

Flexicon manufactures high-performance, flexible packaging materials for the pharmaceutical, medical, healthcare, chemical, food, and industrial markets.

"We have spent the past three decades bulding Flexicon into a flexible packaging tehcnology leader," says Flexicon chief executive officer Greg Baron. "We are confident that Ampac wll be able to take our solid foundation to the next level."

Baron will retire from Flexicon to pursue other interests. Robert Biddle will continue as president of Flexicon, overseeing the facility in Cary.



INVESTMENTS
Bosch Rexroth Adds to China Facilities

HOFFMAN ESTATES, IL—Bosch Rexroth will invest (euro)83 million to expand production capacities in China, beginning with the construction of a new factory in Beijing. It will produce, among other products, axial piston machines for the Asian market. An existing factory in Beijing has reached capacity with just under 350 employees.

Construction also will take place at the factory in Wujin, which produces hydraulic cylinders and units. In addition to the two factories, the company has two other production sites, two logistics centers, and six regional offices.

China is the fourth largest foreign market for Bosch Rexroth after the US, Italy, and France.



LEGAL NEWS
Creo, Kodak Arrangement Moves Forward

VANCOUVER, BC, CANADA—Creo reports it has obtained from the Ontario Superior Court of Justice (Commercial List) the Interim Order the company was seeking for advice and directions under subsection 192(4) of the Canada Business Corporations Act in connection with its arrangement transaction with Eastman Kodak Co. announced on January 31.

The Interim order, among other things, directed and authorized the comany to call, hold, and conduct its annual special meeting of shareholders March 29.

Obtaining the Interim order and holding the meeting are among the steps Creo has had to take toward completion of the arrangement transaction.

The announcement also contained forward-looking statements within the meaning of the "safe harbor" provision of the US Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.



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