Labelexpo Europe 2017: Trends and investments

The 2017 edition of Labelexpo Europe in Brussels was the biggest ever. It covered nine halls and 38,000 sq/m floor space filled by 679 exhibitors, of which 198 were new exhibitors.

09 Oct 2017 | By Rushikesh Aravkar

Andy Thomas, Label & Labeling’s strategic director, gave a glimpse of the global label trends. “Global demand for pressure sensitive labels is at 40%, while wet glue, which is still dominant in developing countries, is at 36%. There is growth in shrink sleeves with global demand being 18%. Region-wise, with 43% Asia Pacific now has an equivalent volume to North America and Europe. A very interesting statistic is that South America is now at 10% in global label consumption.”

Thomas said the market value of printed labels using digital has grown to 9.7% in Europe with toner’s share being 76% while inkjet/hybrid share at 24%. “One of the key trends we are seeing is in the area of digital embellishment, with Gallus and Edale among others leading the way.”

As compared to the previous edition, a decline in the attendance of Indian label converters was observed. According to experts, this can be attributed to the effects of GST on the overall business scene in the country.

Speaking to PrintWeek India, print consultant, Sudhir Samant highlighted major label trends that he captured at the show.

“The Indian label converters are looking for top of the range products from the big brands. This is because the end-users companies like Cadbury, Nestle, Unilever, Dabur etc are interested in the equipment brands and configurations that the converters deploy. The converters have also started using this information as a marketing tool for their business. The Indian label converters have upped the benchmark of USD 0.5- million for an investment in a new press to the USD 1-million mark. As a consequence, you will see heavily loaded presses with eight-colour and ten-colour configurations coming to India.”

On the finishing side, Samant said, there’s a lot of development in post-press for both digitally printed label and conventionally printed label. “We can see a lot of versatile offline finishing kits. One such kit can be deployed to support three or four flexo presses on the shopfloor,” added Samant.

At the show, one could see many intermittent offset presses from Iwasaki, Miyakoshi, Zonten, Weigang, Codimag etc. “Intermittent offset presses were on display at the previous show as well. However, this time the speeds have bolstered and there are improved automation features on the presses. With offset, the pre-press is simpler and cost-effective and turnaround is faster when compared to flexo. Plus the initial capital investment is affordable,” said Samant, adding that converters are looking at offset as an alternative to digital printing for short-run labels.

On the digital front, almost every printing machine manufacturer had a digital printing capability in its portfolio either as a hybrid solution or as a standalone digital press. “There has been a considerable reduction in the pricing of the digital presses. Once affordability sets in, there will be a faster adoption of digital technology. This implies that the converters with more than four flexo presses will prefer to have a digital or offset press as an alternative technology for producing labels,” said Samant.

Besides new product launches and machine demonstrations, it was raining deals at the Labelexpo Europe 2017. A lot of Indian converters were seen investing in high-end equipment. A snapshot.

Sai Com Codes confirms three Nilpeter buy

Team Nilpeter: (l-r) Manish Kapoor, Alan Barretto and Sathish Khanna K

Haryana-based Sai Com Codes has confirmed signing a deal for three Nilpeter FB 350, two ten-colour and one eight-colour 13-inch UV press complete with cold foil, automated plate position system, pre-register and re-register functionality, chill drums, job recall, among other automation.

Manipal’s Kenya operation, Mold-Tek and Citrus opt for Lombardi


Vinsak, Lombardi’s representative for India and the Middle East, rounded off day three of the Labelexpo Europe show by concluding a deal with Citrus Packaging Solutions, a Hyderabad-based start-up label firm.

The latest follows Lombardi Synchroline deals by Manipal’s Kenya operations on the first day and Hyderabad’s Mold-Tek on the second.

Gallus confirms Signode India Labelmaster deal

Gallus India team at Labelexpo

Signode India, the industrial packaging solution provider in Bengaluru, has invested in Gallus’ latest offering, the Labelmaster flexo press, which will become India’s first.

Pune-based Sai Paks in Mark Andy P5 and Rotoflex buy

Deepan Samarth of Sai Paks buys Performance Series P5 press

Flexo Image Graphics (FIG), the Indian representatives of Mark Andy, announced the sale of Performance Series P5 press to Pune-based Sai Paks.

Vadodara’s Bullion Flexipack to enter labels, opts for Omet iFlex

Harveer Sahni, managing director at Weldon Celloplast

Vadodara-based flexible packaging specialist, Bullion Flexipack is set to diversify into labels. The company has placed an order with Omet for the supply of the iFlex flexo press at Labelexpo Europe 2017, which will be installed at a new unit named Orianaa Decorpack in Vadodara.

Shilp Gravures opts for India’s first Kodak Flexcel NX Wide 5080

Vidhu Gautam, sales director of flexographic packaging division for Asia Pacific Region at Kodak

One of the largest gravure cylinder producers in India and the PrintWeek India Printing Company of the Year for 2014 and 2015, Ahmedabad-based Shilp Gravures has bought Kodak Flexcel NX Wide 5080 flexo platesetter, India’s first.

VeePee becomes the first to invest in Esko Crystal 5080 in India

Chandra: "The 5080 will be installed at the company’s third location coming up in Pune"

Bengaluru’s VeePee Graphic Solutions is set to become the first Indian company to invest in an Esko CDI Crystal 5080 imager, the technology that Esko introduce at Drupa 2016.

Edale’s new additions to FL3 flexo press; second Edale at Uflex

Luthra (r) with James Boughton, managing director, Edale

Printers Supply Company (PSC), the Kolkata-based representative of Edale, announced that Uflex has invested in its second Edale flexo press, a 350mm width press.