In 2002, Star Labels merged with Flexoprint where Richard continued managing the production department, responsible for 130 employees and the operation of 12 flexographic and three offset litho presses.
He left Flexoprint in 2006 and joined forces with his sister, Sandra, and her husband, Vaughan Cumming, who at that stage were running Shafton Labels in Howick, using the same machine (a two-colour Flexodiecutter) with which Alan Jones had launched Star Labels. Later, as a result of strong growth, Shafton Labels moved to Pinetown and was renamed First Impression Labels, growing into a highly-successful organisation producing labels for many of South Africa’s blue-chip brands. Richard’s role also grew to encompass production, sales, estimating and training.
In 2010, Richard established Advanced Labels to pursue opportunities in the pharmaceutical self-adhesive labelling sector; but although no longer with First Impressions Labels, he still maintains a close relationship with Sandra and the team.
‘It’s beneficial for both companies to keep close ties. We specialise in different market segments and can offer customers a “total package” if required,’ explains Richard.
He’s joined at Advanced Labels by Leanne Swart, as operations director. Having previously worked for UPM Raflatac, Leanne is no stranger to the labelling industry and understands the importance of offering high-quality products and service to customers.
In addition to Richard’s expertise and the latest printing and converting technology, Advanced Labels is being built on the philosophy that the ‘customer comes first’. A commitment to offering high-quality, cost-effective and innovative labels is accompanied by the support of a dynamic team, trained and qualified in the operation of the latest Nilpeter press, and RotoControl slitting and rewinding technology.
The first of its kind in South Africa, the Nilpeter FB2500 is ideal for specialised label printing for the pharmaceutical, home and personal care, chemical and FMCG markets.
This 250mm wide press handles all label production, from basic blank runs to full-colour labels as well as ‘peel & read’ labels and coupons.
Utmost efficiency and cost management are key to its performance and special features include two unwind units for ‘peel & read’ applications plus a turnaround bar for reverse printing. Maximum web speed is 228m/min and cold foiling, laminating and UV-varnishing can be handled as required.
‘Value for money, I believe Nilpeter’s FB presses are the best flexographic presses available on the market today,’ comments Del Wiggill. ‘Fully modular, each series can be updated and expanded as requirements grow. Nilpeter and CSM are extremely confident of the FB2500’s performance and are gratified that Advanced Labels has chosen this superb Nilpeter technology.’
Slitting and rewinding is performed on the latest RotoControl RSC 340, purchased from Rototec, South African representatives for German-built RotoControl equipment. It’s fitted with an AVT Helios 100% inspection system (PPM, Oct 10, p59), paramount for total quality confidence and security when producing critical information labels. The first of its kind in Durban, the RSC 340 offers a full suite of standard features in an economical, compact, extremely robust machine designed to maximise operator efficiency. Standard features such as cartridge slitting system, vertical inspection zone, automatic tension control, S-Drive servo driven operation, job save and simple, functional controls means more time producing labels and less time in set-up.
‘Our relationship with Richard Jones extends back many years prior to his establishment of Advanced Labels,’ comments Pascal Aengenvoort, co-director of Rototec. ‘Witnessing first-hand his dedication to deliver outstanding product in the narrow-web market, we’re certain his new company will be extremely successful and quickly provide significant benefits to customers in this industry segment.’
Completing the supplier round-up, Flint Group Narrow Web supplies a full range of UV-flexo inks.
The team at Advanced Labels has already started making inroads and the year ahead appears bright with opportunity. ‘We’ve received really positive feedback from new and potential customers,’ states Richard. ‘We’re looking forward to 2011; it’s going to be exciting and our focus is entirely on satisfying customers with perfect products and top-class service,’ he concludes.
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