The lifeblood for high-tech innovation

Reynders had seven plants in Europe, but it saw the increasing opportunities in the Indian label market as a winning strategy when it started its eighth operations in India, says Rahul Kumar

27 Nov 2012 | By Rahul Kumar

Reynders India has been catering to a strong staple of customers through its label-printing facility in Bhiwadi, Rajasthan. 

Recently, the company patented a game label specially designed for GSK and is soon planning to manufacture rotary dosage label, which has been designed, developed for paediatric medicines. “In addition, Reynders will also produce the indestructible trio label after its global commercial success. It is water, oil, and chemical resistant, and contains five re-closable visual pages,” says Karl Vandenbussche, director of the company. 
Reynders, which has seven plants in Europe decided to start a plant in India after it saw increasing opportunities in pharmaceutical, cosmetics, FMCG, food and liquor segments of the market. However, it was in 2009, that the company decided to sharpen its focus on the pharma labels market. Vandenbussche supports the decision with his own theory, “If you can print pharma labels then you can print any type of labels.” 
“We foresee good growth of labels in pharma and cosmetics sector, as the average consumption in India is still one-fourth of that in several European nations. India is among top five pharma manufacturing countries around the world, and is currently growing at a rate of 20%. Therefore, our prime focus is on pharma and cosmetics labels, with more than 27% and 13% of the business coming from these sectors, respectively,” he adds. 
Reynders operates in a plant that has a built area of 50,000 sq/ft, and which is dedicated for multiple labels, with super-specialisation in pharma labels. The units are equipped with design studios, pre-press, flexo, digital and screen printing and finishing machineries, all under one roof. This also includes a customised Gallus press. 
It is also the first label printer in Asia to install an offline Swedish Convertec digital Braille printing machine. On this machine, 12 international Braille languages can be printed with a specially formulated varnish, and to ensure accuracy, the machine can be linked to an internet based translation facility, which converts text to Braille within minutes. This absolves the operator of all responsibility for dot errors.
Digital’s the future
With short-runs getting shorter, Vandenbussche believes that digital is going to be the game changer in the future. “Digital is growing up because of small volumes and the set-up cost is nothing. In flexo, ink is cheaper but it warrants a one-time elaborate set-up process,” he says. 
“Direct to plate, HD plate, digital printing presses, and different quality of inks will be tomorrow’s technology. Offset has come to the end of the road and letterpress will be eased out by the next ten years because of quality reasons. Therefore, there are huge opportunities for flexo. There are several companies, which demand short or very short run labels. HP, EFI Vutek and Xeikon are there to support this demand, and they have their own target markets,” he opines. 
Customers ready for premium
Reynders claims that it holds 2% share in the Indian label market and is content with it. “In India, if you can reach 2-5%, it is big. If you print 20%, it is huge! We print around 90% of the speciality labels in India,” notes Vandenbussche.
The company, which converts 150 tonnes of media (paper and flexo) per month, also feels that crass-cost cutting should not be practised for maintaining the growth story of the industry. “Do not drop your prices; you are killing your industry yourself. Dropping price means compromising with quality,” cautions Vandenbussche.  
He trashes the myth that Indian consumers are not ready to pay premium, “The Indian middle class is growing at a fair clip and a person who is earning Rs 30,000 to 40,000 per month has concerns about his or her looks. Therefore, they are ready to pay a price for top-end cosmetics. That’s why most of the cosmetics companies are available in India, whether they have high or low consumption,” he concludes. 

Reynders factfile
Speciality All kind of labels for more than 125 customers in India and abroad
Equipment Esko Artwork CyrelFast Digital Imager with pre/post exposer and processor–CDI park 4835 for exposing, two Gallus EM280s (eight and ten colour kits), Omega Flytek 500 offline inspection system for reel-to-real error spotting and replacement and Cyrel Fast flexo plates are supplied by Dupont
Media converted 150 tonnes of media (paper and flexo) per month
Staff 26
The quality control section at the Reynders plant