24 Jun 2018

SMGG appoints Bob Stevenson in consumables sales role

Bob Stevenson SMGG

Stanford Marsh Group Graphics (SMGG), the commercial graphics division of Stanford Marsh Group, has appointed Bob Stevenson to boost the sales of consumables to the graphics and signage sectors. In his new role, Bob will be responsible for managing and boosting the sales of graphics consumables, inks and media within London and the South East of England.

Bob joined the company in June 2014 from Spandex where he was focused on selling wide format media and signage products. He is an experienced graphics sector professional having also worked at CWE Solutions and Perfect Colours selling printers, laminators, RIPs and consumables, again to the wide format print sector.

On joining SMGG, Bob says: “I’m really looking forward to using my considerable experience in the graphics sector to help SMGG grow its business. I am knowledgeable in both hardware and consumables sales – regardless of whether it’s UV, solvent or latex technology – and will be able to recommend the right media and inks to SMGG’s clients so they can realise the full potential of the solutions that they purchase.”

SMGG Director Adrian Painter adds: “Bob is a great addition to our team.  We aim to double our graphics/signage sector turnover in the next year and increase our share of what remains an exciting growth market. Bob’s appointment is key to this strategy.”

Additionally, the company has re-organised internal resources to better support the sales drive in the graphics sector.

As a leading independent solutions provider for the wide-format print sector, SMGG offers solutions from Canon, Epson, HP, Mimaki, Mutoh and Océ amongst others, alongside the associated consumables and finishing devices. The company, which employs around 100 staff, has its headquarters in Worcester, a flagship showroom in Bristol, alongside offices Derbyshire, South Wales and Scotland.

For more information on SMGG, please visit www.smgg.co.uk

Esko and Artevelde University College Ghent team up for pilot masterclass flexible packaging

Esko Masterclass Student Group

One-of-a-kind student course demonstrates Esko’s ongoing dedication to invest in technology, knowledge and the future of the industry

Esko (www.esko.com) recently organized for the first time a Masterclass for graduating students of the Artevelde University College Ghent who wanted to further expand their knowledge in the world of packaging. Over a ten-day period, participants underwent both theoretical and practical education that included real-life situations, allowing them to experience the complete packaging development process from design concept to ready-to-print flexo plates.

Immediately after their exams, ten students were selected to participate in the Masterclass Flexible Packaging Prepress. The purpose of this unique class was to provide a more in-depth course complementing the education program. Jan De Roeck, Director Solutions Management at Esko, explains: "Esko has a long history of supporting schools and students, whether through providing software and hardware solutions or through hands-on trainings. The educational institutes provide a broad and basic training, which we, as an industry expert, believe we can complement with insights into the latest innovations and practical field experience. As one of the leading companies in the packaging market, it is our duty not only to invest in technology development, but also to ensure that our knowledge is transferred, guaranteeing an inflow of new talent into the industry. This Masterclass fitted these objectives perfectly."

Packaging: a growth market growing in importance

Packaging remains a strong growth segment, being augmented by a growing volume of online purchases and home delivery, which expands the range of required packaging. It is also clear that to market a product successfully, creative designs and innovative printing techniques are vital. These were reasons enough for the educational advisory board at the Artevelde University College to recommend the Masterclass. "We put the proposal forward to our students in the final year of the Department of Graphical and Digital Media, and they were unanimously positive," says Luk Bouters, Director of Education at Artevelde University College. "We are eager to collaborate with the business community, and this Masterclass offered great opportunities to do that. We worked intensively with the Esko experts and the course also included three on-site visits to packaging companies. These were, very exceptionally, organized by the managers themselves and covered not only the technical aspects but also business and people management matters. This gave our students an excellent well-rounded view of the realities of the packaging supply chain."

In preparation for the Masterclass, students could download a design of an existing flexible packaging from Esko's packaging management website and personalize it with the Esko software. The designs linked the theoretical and practical lessons. Luc Berth, lecturer in prepress and workflow techniques at Artevelde University College, explains: "Our students performed a number of hands-on experiments with a diversity of Esko software applications, including prepress, 3D, workflow and collaboration tools. This enabled them to exercise their creativity, broaden their knowledge and take complete ownership of the workflow – all in a very practical and realistic manner. After going through the entire process, the results were color-accurately printed on a proofing device."

Real-world experience

And the students? Simon Top, Graphic Technology student, was very enthusiastic, saying: "Topics such as packaging and flexo were addressed in some of our classes, but rather basically. This program allowed us to benefit from two weeks of delving further into the topic and using the latest Esko software. Added to that were the very interesting visits which rounded out a particularly instructive Masterclass. It truly made me very interested, and a job in packaging is what really appeals to me."

Tom Maertens, Cross Media Design student, is also convinced: "I found the practical approach really instructive. The courses at school provide the theoretical basis. Now with this unique program, we were able to experience what is going on in a real working environment. I discovered how fascinating the packaging industry is. I still have a year to do at the college, but if I then apply for a job in packaging, I will certainly have an edge over other applicants thanks to this Masterclass."

Successful initiative

Teachers, students, Esko staff and the Artevelde University College all rated the Masterclass initiative as a big success and one worth repeating. "We achieved our goals," concludes De Roeck. "The students enjoyed a unique experience and succeeded in their task with flying colors. The Esko instructors were amazed about the speed at which they picked up everything. This strengthens our belief that offering complementary knowledge, supplemental to the academic curriculum, really helps young talented students to be ready for an interesting and promising career in the packaging industry."

Sihl Direct UK appoints Kelvin Furniss

Sihl Direct UK Kelvin Furniss

Sihl Direct UK has appointed Kelvin Furniss as its Regional Sales Representative for the Midlands area. Kelvin brings 30 years sales experience from within the sign and display industry and joins the UK sales team from Paperlinx.

Ian Turnbull, Operations Director for Sihl Direct UK, comments, “We have achieved significant growth in the UK market since our launch two years ago and to further this development we wanted to add to our sales team. We are very confident that Kelvin’s essential mix of experience, enthusiasm and commitment will prove hugely successful in this important role.”

Kelvin adds, “I am very excited about this opportunity. My strengths have always been in working closely with customers to deliver products and solutions that generate true business benefit. I am very keen on the technical side of the business and believe that with the excellent range of quality, consistent and reliable media that Sihl manufactures, I can help the company achieve its objective to grow further in the UK.”

Outside of work Kelvin is a keen golfer and gardener and also loves to spend time with his children and grandchildren. He concludes, “This market is characterised by the speed of change in technology. I am looking forward to building key relationships with customers to ensure they can partner with a manufacturer that is at the forefront of this change and can help them achieve the success and profitability they are looking for.”

Lucite International announces new role for Keith Piggott

Keith Piggott Lucite International

Perspex Distribution Limited (PDL) Managing Director Keith Piggott has been appointed General Manager for the European Sheet and Composites business at parent company Lucite International.

Lucite is the largest manufacturer of cell cast acrylic sheet in the world and his role will cover the two manufacturing sites at Darwen, Lancashire and Clairvaux, France producing Perspex® acrylic widely used in the signage, print and retail sectors, and Lucite® used extensively in Sanitaryware markets.  He will also remain MD at PDL.

Keith has a long and successful association with Lucite International and in particular with the Perspex® business. He played a leading role in the creation of PDL and its subsequent growth to become UK market leaders in cast acrylic sheet and remains committed to its ongoing success.

As a leading figure in the plastics sector, Keith brings to this new role a wealth of expertise as well as extensive experience in the acrylic sheet and plastics markets in the UK, Europe and USA.

Lucite EMEA General Manager Phil Bailey commented, “The success of Keith’s PDL team over the past 10 years has made a significant contribution to our EMEA business.  I look forward to his ethic for excellent teamwork and shared company vision - helping drive our sheet and composites business to further success in the future.”

Keith has served as President of EPDA and as a Director of IAPD.

Mike Wildbore appointed Vice President of Sales for Drytac Canada

Mark Wildbore Drytac

Drytac has announced the appointment of Mike Wildbore as the new Vice President of Sales for Drytac Canada. Wildbore holds a Bachelor of Technology degree in Graphic Communications Management from Ryerson University and has more than 14 years of experience in the graphic arts industry.

As Vice President of Sales, Wildbore will be tasked with leading the Canadian sales team and generating new business for Drytac’s expanded adhesive coating and converting operations in Toronto.
“Mike is well known and respected in the industry,” states Marc Oosterhuis, President of the Drytac Group. “His experience in a variety of closely related markets and his understanding of multiple sales channels will be a huge asset in helping Drytac become the leading company for custom/OEM adhesive-coated products in Canada.”

Prior to joining Drytac, Wildbore promoted converted paper products for Canada Fibers Ltd and managed consumables and equipment for Partner Graphics Support. Most recently, he served as National Equipment Manager for Ernest Green & Son Ltd., developing national marketing and sales strategies to support the Canadian digital wide format market.

New sales manager added as Hollanders continues its growth strategy

Bart van Kempen Hollanders

As part of its continuing growth strategy in-line with the increase in demand for its digital textile print solutions, Hollanders Printing Systems has added a new sales manager to its dynamic Eindhoven-based team. Bart van Kempen joined the company at the beginning of July and will play a key role in generating new customers as well as developing new territories for the product family.

Van Kempen’s experience includes working at Nestinox in Best where his sales roles involved dealing with specialist companies across a diverse range of manufacturing industries. His role at Hollanders gives him the opportunity to be involved with an ambitious company and use his customer skills to promote the ColorBooster family of textile printing systems.

Working alongside Hollanders CEO Jacco Aartsen Tuijn and founder and CTO of the company, Peter Hollanders, van Kempen is now an integral member of the close-knit highly experienced management team. His remit is to develop sales of the ColorBooster CB250 and CB250 Carpet Edition entry-level textile printers which received their European launch at Fespa 2014. In addition, he will be responsible for generating more success for the company’s 3.2m ColorBooster XL, the award-winning ColorBooster DS double-sided printer, and the ColorFix and ColorWash finishing systems.

“Working for this young yet experienced and ambitious company is a challenge I welcome. Its textile printing machines offer the highest levels of productivity and reliability,” comments van Kempen. “Peter Hollanders and his technical team have developed the finest quality family of products and it’s now up to us to share this ‘best-kept secret’ with the rest of the world.”
“In the first six months of 2014 Hollanders has seen a significant increase in interest across its entire product portfolio.

Van Kempen will play an important role in helping us to extend our reach to new customers and those wanting to upgrade to a new system,” states Aartsen Tuijn. “We are now on a very positive upward trajectory and, with this strong addition to our team, we can continue to move forward in the market.”

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