Supra Craft trusts Bobst for quality and precision

As Supra Craft Packaging upgrades its facility, Rajesh Bhugra, the founder of the company narrates the company’s journey so far with Rahul Kumar

03 Jan 2023 | By Rahul Kumar

(l-r) Karn Bhugra and Rajesh Bhugra: Supra Craft Packaging has invested around Rs 40-crore in the last three years

Bhiwadi, Rajasthan-based Supra Craft Packaging has installed a four-colour Bobst FFG 8.20 Discovery to produce multi-colour corrugated boxes faster, with more precision and less manual intervention.

Rajesh Bhugra, founder, Supra Craft Packaging, says, “We opted for a Bobst FFG for its production quality, its speed, direct presence of Bobst in India, and a robust and prompt after-sales service support. Bobst is world renowned for its quality equipment and ability to deliver what they promise.” He adds that a flexo folder-gluer (FFG) is an essential equipment in the present scenario for an automatic corrugation plant. He feels, "automatic" does not mean making the board automatically alone, but the conversion of board to box should be automated too for quality optimisation and accrual of automation benefits.

However; since the investment was sizable, Supra Craft tested the waters first with an European pre-owned FFG, which Bhugra found to be an eye-opening experience. "We opted for a pre-owned European FFG in 2017 to develop a learning curve followed by a Bobst FFG installation in 2021. We are upgrading our entire production lines and have invested around Rs 40-crore in the last three years. It is a continuous upgradation process through which we aspire to be at the helm of technology,” he says.
Supra Craft, which has a corporate office in Gurugram and a production plant in Rajasthan, was established in 1991-92 after Bhugra shifted base from Kolkata to Bhiwadi.

The corrugation journey
Bhugra was inspired by his father, the late Shyam Sundar Bhugra, who started his corrugation business during his college days around 41 years ago. He used to supply corrugated boxes to Philips and tea exporters. “During my initial days, when I bought my first corrugation machine in Kolkata, I hired a machine operator and worked as an assistant with him. I didn’t have the money to hire people, but I could grasp the technicalities of the machines and the processes. I had a single semi-automatic plant, and gradually established a second and a third. We ran three plants,” he says.

Supra Craft Packaging was established in 1991, in a 10,000-sqft shed at Bhiwadi. In 1992-93, Bhugra wrapped up operations from Kolkata and committed to chalking the roadmap from Bhiwadi.

“We upgraded our operations to its current avatar and shifted to a 100,000-sqft constructed facility in 2013 with a brand new five-ply plant and the best of Chinese equipment, after my son, Karn, fresh from an MBA
from ISB Hyderabad, joined the family business. When my father came to this facility for the first time, he complimented me that this was the best decision of my life,” he says.

Today, the company undertakes several short run jobs in a shift. “We can produce 200 boxes on our production lines and find it a cakewalk with automation. Technological upgradation is a way of life here at Supra Craft as we embark on yet another complete line upgrade from BHS in a phased manner.” he says.

More consolidations and mergers will take place in the coming times because Bhugra believes that the industry is "over-capacity by 40%", and when the tide ebbs, only the truly efficient and stealthy will survive.

Corrugation learnings
“Business owners cannot afford to ignore crucial metrics from within the business and evolving needs of the customer base,” Bhugra says.
He adds, “It is a tough industry to operate in since the product is customised and innumerable variables need to be factored in, but true differentiation lies in the intangibles and the sooner we realise that the better will be our understanding of our product offering.”

Looking ahead
“Supra Craft Packaging currently converts around 150,000-sqm per day in a 12-hour operation, and with the upgrades in place is comfortably poised to take this capacity upto 500,000 sqm by the last quarter of FY22-23.” says Bhugra.

The company’s processes are governed by the QCDD rule — quality, cost, design and delivery; and a strong culture statement of “Do what you say and say what you do” in all aspects of the enterprise.

With a “corrugated human brain” as its logo it is easy to understand Supra Craft’s engagement and commitment to the corrugated packaging industry.

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