A case in point is the appointment of Lorraine O’Neill and Caroline Cannel as joint MDs of Transpaco Flexibles. With impressive backgrounds in sales and finance respectively, they make a formidable team and, with a collective 35 years’ service at Transpaco Flexibles, they have a genuine passion for the business and a thorough understanding of packaging, not to mention a watertight strategy for growth.
‘Creating a situation where two MDs can run one company is not common in our group, and Caroline and I are excited to be taking on this challenge. Together with production director, Vino Padayachee, we’re setting a course that will take the business to the next level,’ remarks Lorraine.
Renowned for its award-winning flexible packaging and plastic bags for the retail, industrial, agricultural, stationery and food industries, the Transpaco Flexibles team is dedicated to world-class production, and much has been invested in the last five years to meet efficiency and manufacturing goals.
Since the 2010 installation of a Carint Skorpion eight-colour press, a CMD bag-on-roll machine, for the production of drawstring bin liners and tog bags, a Macchi monolayer film extruder, and a fourth Hemingstone bagmaking machine have been introduced. Most recently, a Pelican Soloprint six-colour stack press has taken its place alongside the Carint.
‘Most of these investments have occurred within the last two years and there’s still more to come,’ Caroline notes. ‘Besides our monthly contracts, we’re continually securing orders from multinational and export customers for our award-winning Jiffy Back-to-School range, customised boutique bags and refuse bags,’ she adds.
Excellence from start to finish
In the extrusion hall, the Macchi Sintex monolayer extrusion line certainly makes an impressive sight and, according to machine supervisor, Dalton Leeu, produces premium-quality HDPE and LDPE sheet and tubular film up to 1 500mm wide, at thicknesses from 20µm to more than 200µm.
‘To produce a quality bag, we have to ensure a first-class process from the start, and the Macchi suits our needs perfectly. It’s a tried-and-tested brand utilised by bagmakers worldwide. In addition, we have the support of Maritime Marketing, a long-time industry partner,’ comments Lorraine.
The Pelican Soloprint, installed by Paul Clark and the team from Adex Plastics & Machinery, is built to achieve the high standards required for flexible packaging printing. It sports a number of clever design features including a heavy-duty frame that eliminates vibration, touchscreen master operator control system, direct programmable web tension control, web edge guides before and after print, and a motorised web video inspection system – all contributing to increasing efficiencies and lowering energy consumption.
With extra capacity provided by the Pelican press, expanding bagmaking capacity was the next necessary step, and a recently-installed Hemingstone HM-810SFP-SV automatic machine complements the existing line-up, expertly converting patch, soft loop, poly draw and die-cut handle bags at a maximum speed of 75 cycles/min (depending on handle choice). Soon to be added to this already impressive fleet is a Hemingstone 8M-830MP super high-speed patch handle bagmaker. Capable of 150 cycles/min, this third-generation system features a servo-drive patch welding, hydraulic unwind and hot punching.
With these recent investments now bedded down, Lorraine and Caroline are preparing the Wynberg (Johannesburg) plant for the arrival, in September, of an Erema recycling system that will allow them to increase their recycling rate to an impressive 98%.
‘We’re excited about this development,’ says Caroline. ‘By meeting our in-house scrap converting goals, we’re protecting our bottom line and creating a better environment. With the inclusion of an auto twin-feed station, running up to eight rolls of film, plus Erema’s ecoSAVE motors, the new system is capable of offering 35% energy savings, resulting in lower production costs and reduced CO2 emissions. The system also delivers information on energy requirements, enabling active energy optimisation throughout the entire production process.’
With Transpaco’s extended range of converting equipment, the focus now is on providing high-quality bags and ever-faster turnaround times, creating new business opportunities across all markets.
‘By investing in top-quality production equipment, we’re able to stay ahead in terms of efficiency and maximise new business opportunities,’ Caroline sums up. ‘It’s all about creating the right balance to sustain our growth and I’m confident we’ve made the right choices to achieve our goals.’
Sign & Seal Labels’ début in these pages occurred some 18 months ago (PPM Festive 2013) with news of the purchase of an Italian-built Cartes finishing machine, an investment destined to take the seven-year-old business to a fresh level – stepping out of the highly-competitive commodity market and into the realm of sophisticated, added-value labels (notably for upmarket wine labels).