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FLEXO Magazine : January 2014
INDUSTRY INDICATORS Flexo Up North More Work, Increased Capacity, Utilizing Modern Tech By Kelly Roberts Presently, the Canadian flexo market is very active. There have been a number of presses purchased incorporating the newest, most effective and efficient technologies our industry has to offer. In saying this, I an- ticipate that there will be significantly more gearless/servo, sleeve dedicated presses entering the flexo market in the near future. SHIFTING BUSINESS Though our market is active in a capital equipment sales capacity, there has unfortunately been a significant reduction in the number of actual clients and corporations with the ability to purchase capital and consumable equipment. These two situations involve corporate acquisitions and corporate closures. Canada is home to many internationally based companies and corporate acquisitions have been taking place frequently over the past couple of years. With the state of the global economy, several internationally recognized “head offices” have chosen to move and combine their Canadian operations into American sites. These corpo- rations have removed all printing equipment and supplies from these once successful business locations, and are now completely out of the business of manufacturing printed pack- aging within Canada. Complete corporate closures have also been occurring. These once thriving and successful organizations have shut down their printing companies completely—selling their equipment as part of the “used international” market to recuperate some of their financial losses as a result of this economic downturn. It is interesting to note that even though we have had a reduced number of clients and reduced number of loca- tions to visit, packaging is still healthy. The larger “healthy ” businesses that remain are well educated in the field and are purchasing innovative technology as they work hard to posi- tion themselves to earn the opportunities that now occur with fewer printing companies bidding on jobs. They are increas- ing their real estate to match their increasing business. On the narrow web side, it has been a very similar situa- tion. We have had some closures of organizations but it has been my experience in working with these clients that many presses were able to stay in the country and were picked up by other organizations that had a different business philoso- phy. Those companies have been successful in growing their business through acquisition. In short, flexography is healthy and will continue to grow. CANADA & THE WORLD Canada’s place in the worldwide flexo market has a lot to do with the economics of the world’s trade and what tran- VITAL SIGNS • Canadian flexo market full of activity • Focus on very quick changeovers, increased efficiency and cost savings • Packaging is healthy. Businesses are well educated in the field and are purchasing innovative technology as they work hard to position themselves to earn opportunities • Printers/converters are increasing real estate to match increasing business • Country ’s capacity can handle its own demand • Prepress, job changeover, waste reduction still largest advancements • Embracing new technologies critical to future successes 22 FLEXO JANUARY 2014 www.flexography.org