Sunday, July 19, 2015

Loparex Group acquires 100% stake in Kaygee-Loparex India Private Ltd.

Effective August 1, 2015, Loparex Group will assume 100% ownership of the India joint venture company, Kaygee-Loparex India Private Ltd.   

Mike Apperson, Loparex CEO comments, “We are delighted to add the world class manufacturing capabilities of Kaygee-Loparex to the global Loparex family. In addition to the assets, we also welcome an incredibly talented and dedicated group of employees to our Loparex team, which will synergize our ability to bring additional value, not only to our local India-based customers, but also to our customers throughout the world”.  

Apperson adds, “The addition of Loparex-India compliments our unique and continuing investment strategy and our long term commitment to serving the diverse needs of our global customers”. 
Established as a joint venture in 2001, Kaygee-Loparex is India’s largest release liner manufacturer. The state-of-the-art facility, located in Silvassa (near Mumbai), produces a wide array of custom-engineered silicone coated papers and films which support the diverse release liner needs of key industries including Medical, Tapes, Hygiene, Labels, Security, Composites and other industrial markets. 

In-house product development, combined with IMS Certification (ISO 9001:2008, ISO14001:2004 and OHSAS 18001:2007), practiced GMP, and robust quality management methodology ensure the highest standards of quality, efficiency, regulatory and EHS compliance.  

Loparex, the leading global supplier of release liners, also has manufacturing, product development and commercial operations in the US, Europe, China and Thailand.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Label printing in India: Digital has to wait a while!

India has been termed as perhaps the fastest growing market for printed products in the world. According to the NPES/PRIMIR World Wide Market for Print study, published by the Economist Intelligence Unit, “the size of India’s print market will be USD 29.3 billion in 2017 up from USD 24.3 billion in 2014. Print market growth in India has slowed down since the global financial crisis, but the market will continue to grow over the period through 2017; total print product revenues in India will grow at 6.8% annually through 2017”.
 Digital printing accounts for 15% of all printed products globally. However, as for India, given the late start and slower adoption of new and fast changing technologies by the cautious print fraternity, even if we make a moderate estimate, the market size for all the digital printed products should be within USD 3-4 billion. This is my personal estimation but if I take predictions and estimation of industry leaders, it appears to be relatively accurate. Pankaj Kalra of Xerox stated in 2012, that “the size of the digital printing market is estimated at USD 1.5 billion now and is expected to grow to USD 2.5 billion by 2012-13”, clocking a whopping 70% growth! The packaging and label segment account for over 40% of the total printed products in India and the segment is growing at 15% against a global growth rate of 5%.

Middle class and cultural diversity as growth drivers
Most of the growth is expected or is coming out of the bulging middle class in India. It is a consumer

segment that is turning out a literate and young workforce with disposable income and a long residual working life indicating stability. This young workforce is exposed to the internet and wishes to indulge in modern day retail spending, driving amazing demands for consumer products and also for labels and packaging.
India is a large country having a population with diverse cultures and religions. In addition, similarly different cultures have different festivals. Retail marketing professionals are formulating ways to tap the selling opportunities such occasions offer. It is at this time customized short runs become the need of the hour. The print on demand capabilities of digital printing provides the perfect solution to such requirements. Consumer product companies can offer limited edition packs with regional festival branding. It is one such example of things that are driving that tremendous growth into digital printing in India.

The impact of digital printing
While digital printing has made its impact in the Indian sheet fed printing arena, yet it still does not have many takers in the narrow web label printing. Most of the established offset printers have more or less enabled themselves with digital capabilities for not just proofing but also to cater to their customers who need short run jobs. Otherwise customers would start looking elsewhere to get short runs done. Customer retention is a very important requisite for successful print firms with large capital investments. They cannot afford their customers to go to other printers for short runs as this way they are liable to lose their bulk business as well.
The reason for small digital printing companies for sheet-fed mushrooming all over the country is that most of the large offset printers are still focused on their high volume customers and they acquire some digital capabilities to address the needs of existing customers. The smaller consumers needing just the short runs, have created a demand to cater to this need, small digital printing outfits have come up in colonies and markets in all big cities in India.
I believe sooner or later the bigger players in the organized segment will indulge in tapping this market in an organized manner offering services at the smaller customer’s door step on demand. Obviously these are game changing times and that is what makes the Indian printing stalwarts go on the defensive. The sheer ever changing and evolving nature of electronic technologies makes them apprehensive. They fear their equipment will become obsolete before they can say they got their return on the investment.

Personalities interviewed;
Narendra Paruchuri-PragatiPack Hyderabad
Gautam Kothari- Skanem Interlabels Mumbai

Rajesh Nema, Pragati, Indore

Amar Chhajed- Webtech Labels, Mumbai

Vivek Kapoor-Creative Labels, Mumbai

This article is  exclusively written by Harveer Sahni, Managing Director Weldon Celloplast Limited, New Delhi India for Narrow WebTech Germany in May 2015 The article should not be used or published without the permission of Narrow Web Tech Germany. Should you wish to reproduce, please contact the author or editor Narrow Web Tech

Sunday, May 24, 2015

PrintWeek India Awards!

Over the last seven years Printweek Awards have gained immensely in respect, stature and value for delivering recognition to outstanding work in Print. The Printweek team lead by Group Editor Ramu Ramanathan has painstakingly worked to make these, as one of the most prestigious awards in India. The real value comes from selection of an eminent and learned jury; a line-up of big-name print buyers, who not only ensure but also measure the consistency of work submitted. They also check financial performance and business strategy so as to provide inspiration to new and young entrants into Print. Getting dedicated and committed creative printing companies to send in their master creations in print as entries is in itself a gigantic task which the Printweek team accomplishes with hardcore indulgence. The standard of work that has come in as entries for these awards over the years has continuously seen a escalation in quality of print and finishing processes employed by printers who continue to master the latest technologies in printing, converting and finishing.

Ramu Ramanathan
Printweek has been successful in bringing together the printing industry across the Nation through
their publication and driving in, a culture to achieve excellence in print. It is heartening to see them touching base with printers of all size and catering to all segments in printing in remote corners of India. They have created categories that cover almost all technologies like Offset, Flexo, Gravure, Screen, etc and to segments like commercial printing, packaging, POP, advertising and Labels. Bringing together such a large collection of printers under one umbrella is laudable. What is more interesting is that they also honour students who excel, while still learning the skills of high quality printing. They are the future of print! This connect will surely be the long term bridge between those who create masterpieces in print and those who bring appreciation and rewards to printers.
Anygraphics receiving the Printweek 2014 award.
Education, advertising and packaging still rely heavily on the printing quality and innovation. It is at this time an imperative, for those who are making an entry into print or those who are trying to find avenues to profitability and success, to actually dwell on innovative creations.  I would like to suggest to Printweek to institute an award for that one printer in the country who invested in some new technology or developed a new technique or a product that was so far not there, thus creating awareness in need to take the printing industry in India to another level.
PrintWeek India Awards has announced entries open from  1st  May 2015  for its seventh edition of the annual print hunt. The entries are open to all Indian  print companies for jobs printed  from 1st  April, 2014 onwards. Like each year, the awards are categorised as the Performance Awards ( 6 categories) and the Quality Awards (20 categories).

1.    PrintWeek India Printing Company of the Year
2.    Green Printing Company of the Year
3.    Post-Press Company of the Year
4.    Pre-Press Company of the Year
5.    SME Printing Company of the Year
6.    Student of the Year

1.    Book Printer of the Year (Academic and Trade)
2.    Book Printer of the Year (Specialty)
3.    Brochure & Catalogue Printer of the Year
4.    Creative Repro Company of the Year
5.    Cross Media Company of the Year
6.    Digital Photo Album Printer of the Year
7.    Digital Printer of the Year
8.    Direct Mail Printer of the Year
9.    Fine Art Printer of the Year
10.  Industrial Product Printer of the Year
11.  Innovative Printer of the Year
12.  Label Printer of the Year
13.  Magazine Printer of the Year
14.  Newspaper Printer of the Year
15.  Packaging Converter of the Year (General)
16.  Packaging Converter of the Year (Luxury)
17.  PUR-Book Maker of the Year
18.  Screen Printer of the Year
19.  Social Stationery Printer of the Year
20.  Wide-Format Printer of the Year

Early Bird Deadline -  30 June 2015.
Early Bird Entry Fee -  Rs 2000 per entry.
Deadline – 31 July 2015
Regular Entry Fee – Rs 2500 per entry.
Latest updates and entry forms will soon be available on the PrintWeek India Awards website.
For further detail write to or call 022 43025016

Written by Harveer Singh Sahni, Managing Director, Weldon Celloplast Limited, New Delhi, India May, 2015

The above post maybe reproduced by giving credit to author.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Indian Label printers to meet in Jaipur, excitement builds up!

LMAI team at first 2011 conference
In the chronology of self adhesive labels in India, July 2011 will go down as one of the most important historical times when the first LMAI conference was held at the picturesque Park Hyatt Hotel in Goa. The longest serving President of LMAI Vivek Kapoor and his team had targeted a delegate strength of 125 but the event was so successful that the final count was 270! Rooms fell short and delegates had to be accomodated at nearby hotels. We were in the initial stages, not sure if another conference will be held later and when. However in the end of the conference the decision was unanimous, it has to be a regular biennial event and so it is. Report of the event with pictures is available on this blog at   
Labelexpo team at the 2013 conference

Two years on in July 2013 the Indian Label industry was back in Goa with a bang, this time at the Grand Hyatt, a much bigger venue than the Park Hyatt as a larger gathering was expected. True to expectations of the LMAI team the number of delegates crossed 390, a commendable job. World class entertainment was delivered after learned speakers had shared their knowledge with the delegates in an extremely focused conference. My report on this event as well is available at At the last LMAI conference  there were murmurs that the venue needs to move to another destination but there were many who were adamant that it should remain in Goa. As time elapsed the murmur in Goa became louder leading to a decision to move the conference northwards to a heritage city in Rajasthan. Finally it was decided to hold the conference in Jaipur.

Jaipur the capital of Rajasthan state in India was founded in 1727 by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II, a Kachwaha Rajput, who ruled Jaipur State from 1699-1744. Initially his capital was Amber, which lies at a distance of 11 km from Jaipur. He felt the need of shifting his capital city with the increase in population and growing scarcity of water. Jaipur is the first planned city of India and the King took great interest while designing this city of victory. According to that time, architecture of the town was very advanced and certainly the best in Indian subcontinent. In 1878, when Prince of Wales visited Jaipur, the whole city was painted in Pink color to welcome him and after that Jaipur was titled ‘Pink City’. Still, the neat and broadly laid-out avenues, painted in pink provide a magical charm to the city. Jaipur is rich in its cultural and architectural beauty, which can be traced in the various historical and aesthetic places that reside in the city. This city of victory really wins the hearts of the people with its splendid charisma and heritage.

LMAI conference is slated to be held in Hotel Fairmont in Jaipur on the 16th, 17th & 18th of July 2015. Fairmont Jaipur is an ode to the pink city through awe inspiring architecture and decor, inspired by the Mughal Dynasty and Royal Rajputs of yore. This luxury Jaipur hotel is nestled amongst the majestic Aravalli hills, all 199 rooms and suites are elegantly appointed, to reflect a perfect blend of traditional Rajasthani d├ęcor and modern amenities. Over 400 delegates consisting of converters, material suppliers, consumable suppliers and press suppliers are expected to congregate at the conference venue. The event promises to deliver value in terms of knowledge, networking and entertainment. The industry constituents are already excited to share the good times with colleagues. Expecting a shortage of rooms the LMAI management has also made arrangements in hotels nearby.

Vivek Kapoor
Commenting on the event, LMAI President Vivek Kapoor says, “Over the years, the LMAI Conference has become an important platform for addressing various industry issues. This year we have increased the duration of the conference from two days to three days to ensure that the delegates, who travel from around the country and world to attend this event will get ample time to network and conduct B2B discussions”. Chairperson of LMAI 2015 Conference, Guraraj Ballarwad says, “The label industry in India faces significant challenges in this ever changing dynamics of label manufacturing and it is necessary to identify changing trends that help gear the Indian industry to meet those challenges.” Leading printers and Industry stalwarts have also expressed optimism and excitement at this forthcoming event. Sanjeev Sondhi of ZIRCON TECHNOLOGIES INDIA LTD. says, “This conference is an excellent platform for label fraternity to sit together and look for ways and means to make this industry more vibrant in terms of technology, operations and improving profits”. In South India, Sivakasi based Seljegat’s Raveendran feels that while industry events like this conference is a good occasion to network and share experiences with peers, yet he says, “The content needs to be more wholesome. Instead of just the sponsors making speeches, it would be better if we have neutral speakers who can shed light on the way forward.” He further adds, “Label Printers would like to dwell on what direction the label industry is moving globally and the impact of multi process printing and converting equipment in enhancing capabilities to develop specialty labels. This will help them make investment decisions”.

Finally the young Chandan Khanna heading multi-location Ajanta Packaging having multinational presence with units in Daman(India), Baddi(India), Thailand and Ajman(UAE) sums it all. He says, “The LMAI conference, which comes once in two years is an event that personally I try and ensure I attend. The presentations, open panel discussions, the getting together with your peers and industry suppliers in a relaxed environment is good for all industry constituents. I feel, positive changes occur from the networking whereby all in the industry stand to benefit. It is a must meet event. I am looking forward to being at the conference”.

With excitement building up and registrations coming in at fast pace, the LMAI conference promises to deliver value and fun in the heritage pink city of Jaipur. I look forward to an august gathering where competitors, suppliers and customers will rejoice togetherness!

The above article maybe reproduced by magazines giving credit to the author.

Written by Harveer Singh Sahni, Managing Director, Weldon Celloplast Limited, New Delhi, India April 2015

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The growth of one of the biggest labelstock manufacturers in India

Ajay Mehta, Mg.Dir. SMI

 Evolving from a business doing lamination jobs for sheet-fed offset printers founded in 1961, SMI Coated Products Pvt Ltd developed into one of India’s leading labelstock manufacturing companies. Harveer Sahni talked to the company owner about the reasons for this strategic realignment, referring to some particular conditions of the Indian label market.

The beginnings
 In 1956, Om Prakash Mehta started his own trading business at Kolkata by importing cosmetics and watches but due to cumbersome and restrictive licensing procedures prevailing at that time, he left that business. In 1960 he started to make 3D photos that were quite a novelty in those days and also made gift items.
A year later he saw potential in the print lamination business as glossy posters and catalogues became a very important selling tool. Therefore he started doing lamination jobs for sheet-fed offset printers. Due to terrorist activities of the left-wing Naxalites in the latter half of the 1960s and the resulting unstable local situation, he decided to relocate in Mumbai (known as Bombay in those days).
Once in Mumbai, Om Prakash Mehta started his enterprise SM Plastic Industries at rented premises in Nargis Compound, JB Nagar, Andheri, continuing the same print lamination business that he was doing in Kolkata. Initially it was a very difficult time and one of the first deals he remembers is that when he got a very big lead through Ajanta Printarts. They asked him to approach their biggest competitor and tell them Ajanta’s lamination job was done by SM Plastic Industries, the gimmick worked! He got the order and was soon doing jobs for printers across the nation. The customer base grew and in 1977 he bought his own premises in Shiv Shakti Industrial Estate and moved his operations there in 1982. In the following three to four years the sheet lamination business started to become localized and bigger printers preferred to do the jobs in-house.
Leaving the print lamination business in the hands of loyal workers, who till this day run the business with support from his son Ajay Mehta, who did his initial schooling at St. Lawrence School Kolkata and later at St. Teresa High School, Bandra, Mumbai. He then completed his B.Sc (Chemistry) from Mithibai College, Mumbai. In 1983 Ajay Mehta completed his studies and joined his fathers’ business.
Om Prakash moved on to establish another enterprise in 1987 doing fabric to fabric lamination like silk to flannel or cotton to cotton for shoe uppers using EVA for bonding. He developed triple fabric laminates for shoes, bags and accessories. Ajay comment “The laminates were very good and gave long life to the products they were used in. As a result of this in just one and a half year we were without any orders”. Therefore, in 1991/92 he decided to quit the fabric lamination business.

Setting up labelstock manufacturing

In 1993 he setup labelstock manufacturing facility SM Industries at Daman with the help of a 20”
width coater laminator running at just 15 m/min (49.21 fpm). The location was chosen because Mumbai was too expensive and moreover there were tax incentives available at Daman. It was difficult to run that unit initially because road conditions were bad. When the thought came to Ajay to also become involved in printing, his father would not allow forward integration because he envisioned that they would not compete with their customers. They initially made only sheeted materials and a lot of hard work went into making the unit a success.

This article is  exclusively written by Harveer Sahni, Managing Director Weldon Celloplast Limited, New Delhi India for Narrow WebTech Germany in January 2015 The article should not be used or published without the permission of Narrow WebTech Germany.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

The life of a label-III

A close look into label creation and development

Booklet label for wine application

Part one of this series of articles referred to the general importance of labels and the second part picked up on the issue of the imperative, that the label design has to be a parallel creation when the package is being designed. The final deals with the converting process and how labels support the promotion and protection of brands.

The converting process
Creating a label is a designer’s job which requires passion and creative indulgence, but converting it to a label that will deliver the envisaged results of communicating with the consumer, is the job of a converter. If the designer has taken care of the converters capabilities and challenges, the result is close to being as desired. However if at the design stage the eventual converting process is not revisited, converting may become a nightmare and may call for more time and involvement to make changes in the design.
Let us consider a label that is not one of the regular shapes like a square, a rectangle or a circle. If it is like a star, a flower or an odd shape with sharp corners, it will be a challenge at the die-cutting stage and will greatly slowdown label conversion bringing up the cost of label production. In such a situation label dispensing may also become erratic. I am not suggesting that such shapes should not be considered, but if the product and its marketing warrant’s it and can support a higher conversion cost, it may even become a necessity to create such complex labels. Also when new products are created for a specific customer segment, the challenges in conversion speed sometimes have to take a back seat.
 Be very strong and bold in branding!
Labels are one part of the package that contributes to brand promotion. While the aesthetics and decoration of the label tempts the consumer, to impulsively lift the product off the shop shelf. It is the brand promotion in-built into the label that will bring customers back to make a repeat purchase. A product may have been created with lot of skill and effort and may also be the best buy for the discerning consumer. Its commercial success will depend not only on repeated purchases by the buyer but by his spreading the message by word-of-mouth to others about the product.

This article is a part of the three part series that was exclusively written by Harveer Sahni, Managing Director Weldon Celloplast Limited, New Delhi India for Narrow WebTech Germany. The article should not be used or published without the permission of Narrow WebTech Germany.