Kirk Team Rides Packaging Reshoring Wave with KODAK FLEXCEL NX Technological know-how from Miraclon

“We solution a new packaging know-how these days in particularly the exact same way we have for fifty decades. If it appears handy, we examine it, and if it stands up to scrutiny, we combine it, validate it, and get it to the market place.”

John Kapiniaris, Basic Supervisor of Australia’s Kirk Team, the most significant supplier of graphic arts companies and graphic carriers in Australia and New Zealand, is delivering context for the group’s most current know-how acquisition — KODAK FLEXCEL NX Central Computer software, the new automatic plate format know-how from Miraclon, which he claims has “transformed our plate utilization performance.” FLEXCEL NX Central Computer software permits the integration of several state-of-the-art plate area patterning attributes – like people shipped within just FLEXCEL NX Print Suite for PureFlexo™ Printing – into a person automatic plate format, and will increase regularity and lessens faults by reducing operator touchpoints. It also enhances efficiency by enabling several people on the community to remotely look at or handle the plate format course of action.

Early adoption of know-how is a Kirk trademark — “Innovation is in our DNA,” claims John — and a key purpose for its achievement in excess of the fifty decades given that Graeme Kirk established the business enterprise in 1972, at first to give artwork companies and gravure cylinder engraving. The business moved into flexo in the eighties and nineties and these days has 4 producing web pages in Australia and New Zealand — Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Auckland — and, given that 2020, a existence in Mumbai, India.

Rapid movers
“We intention to normally be very first to market place,” claims John, ahead of detailing how rolling out a new know-how will involve functioning carefully with “a reliable community of suppliers and clients to seriously area check a remedy.” The company’s adoption of FLEXCEL NX Technological know-how in 2010 is a great case in point of this mixture of technological curiosity and near collaboration, as John remembers. “It was a person of our reliable clients that alerted Graeme to a groundbreaking new know-how. He quickly investigated, appreciated what he noticed and purchased a FLEXCEL NX Program. Pursuing the new know-how set up, we labored with a key model and our reliable print associate to qualify the know-how throughout their merchandise array, analyzing it on several SKUs with seriously elaborate models — several hues, wonderful textual content, and so on. At the close of the qualification course of action we understood, and so did the model operator and printer, that we experienced a thing truly new and thrilling to get to the market place.”

Reshoring boosts area desire
FLEXCEL NX Central Computer software is Kirk’s 3rd latest financial commitment in Miraclon know-how, adhering to the November set up of a KODAK FLEXCEL NX Extremely Remedy and investing in the FLEXCEL NX Print Suite for Versatile Packaging to accessibility PureFlexo™ Printing Technological know-how ahead of that. They are all in line with the company’s coverage of devices- and know-how-pushed innovation. The answers increase increased abilities to Kirk’s providing — extra economical plate utilization, sustainable plate processing, and on push performance — which are critical to the company’s reaction to what John Kapiniaris describes as “resurgence in area desire in the wake of the pandemic, as several manufacturers carry packaging manufacturing household from abroad.”

“The pandemic caught a whole lot of manufacturers off guard,” he proceeds. “For the ideal aspect of two a long time the pattern has been to ‘offshore’ packaging on value grounds. Which is easy to understand if the source chain is steady, but the disruption in 2020 pressured manufacturers to rethink the method. Do they remain offshore and possibility interruption in source, or re-associate with area suppliers? Judging on the elevated volumes we’re dealing with, the response is to occur household! We’re observing get the job done returning that still left 10 decades back, and in excess of the past twelve months there is been a flurry of financial commitment in new flexo presses amongst our clients.”

This returning business enterprise boosts what was presently a constructive outlook for Kirk’s flexo prepress companies, desire for which has developed strongly in excess of the past 10 years, reflecting flexo’s regular progress at the cost of gravure. Claims John: “Flexo offers manufacturers the agility and overall flexibility they will need in internet marketing strategies, and given that the arrival of FLEXCEL NX Technological know-how, the amounts of high-quality and regularity to match gravure and litho.”

Automation controls prices
Welcome as the reshoring of packaging manufacturing is, Kirk is aware that the purpose it went abroad in the very first position — value — stays an crucial component in model owners’ calculations. “Automating procedures anywhere feasible is central to our method,” claims John, citing as an case in point the ‘Flite’ print administration method Kirk introduced in 2019. “Flite automates all the ways from ultimate artwork to shipped plates, eliminating handbook touchpoints and connecting all stakeholders in a clear manufacturing atmosphere. We develop a custom made workflow for each and every purchaser, centered on an in-depth comprehending of their business enterprise necessities, volumes, shade method and printer house. It can take absent all the everyday ‘noise’ — the cellular phone phone calls, e-mails, position requests, and so on, and results in a remarkably dynamic atmosphere, functioning in genuine-time.”

FLEXCEL NX Central Computer software is the most current string included to Kirk’s bow. Formulated by Miraclon exclusively to assistance clients in their travel for performance, squander reduction and labor financial savings, the application is personalized to the FLEXCEL NX Program and permits the automation of all plate manufacturing, like the automated software of several state-of-the-art plate area patterning attributes.

John Kapiniaris claims FLEXCEL NX Central Computer software has elevated plate utilization by upwards of five% — providing extra saleable plates and ensuing in increased sustainable functions.”

Dynamic plate format “the most important benefit”
He provides, even so, that the most important advantage from the system is “the skill to retain a dynamic plate format proper up right until the past moment, which is a genuine match-changer in the Just-In-Time packaging business enterprise. FLEXCEL NX Central Computer software primarily makes it possible for us to keep a stay ‘bucket’ of work right until we’re prepared to course of action the plates. Correctly, it offers us an further 6 several hours in which we can acknowledge past-moment work, that are mechanically included to the plate layouts, maximizing the plate utilization, and that is a major raise to ability and performance.”

FLEXCEL NX Central Computer software is also increasing Kirk’s plate supply infrastructure. Claims John: “Before, we operated a centralized method with a person section planning plate layouts ahead of sending them out to each and every internet site. Now web pages have their possess ‘bucket’ into which we provide documents, which are mechanically laid out and output when expected. It is a area, extra dynamic solution that allows us change plates all around quicker.” He provides that, in an unpredicted reward, FLEXCEL NX Central Computer software is opening up a new market place for Kirk amongst slim website label printers. “Turnaround periods in the sector are in close proximity to-prompt, and competitiveness is intense. Preserving plate layouts fluid, and with utilization extra predictable, it makes it possible for our business enterprise to turn into remarkably aggressive in this market place.

Higher anticipations
Kirk also has superior anticipations of the FLEXCEL NX Extremely drinking water-centered processing remedy that is at the moment currently being rolled out to clients trying to get extra sustainable plate answers. Solvent-totally free and VOC-totally free, the FLEXCEL NX Extremely Remedy attributes the patented Miraclon-produced KODAK Extremely Cleanse Technological know-how, and is the very first aqueous remedy that generates dependable, superior-executing plates in a superior-quantity, small-servicing atmosphere.

“When we noticed the FLEXCEL NX Extremely Remedy in motion, it was a further case in point of a person of people ‘lightbulb moments’ you get from Miraclon,” claims John. “We’ve been checking out drinking water-clean processing for a although mainly because it supports the significance of sustainable producing for several manufacturers. This provided buying a business enterprise a couple decades back that was energetic in the house with various know-how, so we have received a great comprehending of the problems. Even so, the FLEXCEL NX Extremely Remedy offers our clients the high-quality and regularity related with FLEXCEL NX Technological know-how, and that is an beautiful mixture. It is a further circumstance of Miraclon currently being that a person action in advance of the market place.”

He cites PureFlexo Printing as a further case in point of the way in which Miraclon incrementally improvements flexo’s abilities. Kirk invested in the remedy in 2021, at first functioning with the Miraclon R&ampD staff to handle a precise purchaser concern, but also noticed advancements with regularity, decreasing the frequency of altering the shade profiles. Claims John: “PureFlexo Printing rapidly grew to become our default remedy for all adaptable packaging clients, who are accomplishing high-quality and regularity amounts that have shocked and psyched model clientele.”

The use of PureFlexo Printing has enhanced the predictability of the print on push, with a lot less unwelcome ink distribute and the related problems typically approved as aspect of flexo printing. This has authorized our staff to concentration on bringing further abilities and benefit to our model and printer clientele and devote a lot less time addressing classic flexo issues.”

Reliable associates
They did not know it at the time, but the purchaser that proposed Graeme Kirk glimpse at FLEXCEL NX Technological know-how in 2010 was placing in movement a remarkably near collaboration among Kirk and Miraclon that proceeds to the current working day. For John Kapiniaris it is a “truly open up two-way partnership from which we have both equally received valuable results. It is centered on believe in — we recognize that Miraclon trusts us to be concerned in alpha- and beta-tests new developments and values our comments. And the believe in goes the other way — we welcome Miraclon working straight with our clients if it will aid us all get there at the proper remedy.”

Much healthier conversations
Probably the biggest compliment he pays Miraclon is his get on how FLEXCEL NX Technological know-how and its successive iterations has, in his text, “enabled more healthy conversations all around the return on financial commitment of the position. In advance of, it was all about who experienced the most affordable plate, but the arrival of FLEXCEL NX Technological know-how altered that, not minimum mainly because the improvements it signifies inspired other gamers in the flexo course of action to up their match. That altered the dialogue to the general value of a position — how things like shade method, plate styles, aniloxes, push situations, operators’ abilities all add to the whole output and the effects of the packaging on the shelf. That pondering has remodeled the field.”

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