Converter Clips

Rigney Fund Honors Student

BRIDGEWATER, NJ — Chris Forte was the 2006 recipient of the Peter A. Rigney Endowed Memorial Fund, which is used to provide scholarships/fellowships to deserving undergraduate and graduate students studying package engineering at Rutgers, the state university of New Jersey.

The fund, now at $140,000, is named for the late publisher of PFFC magazine. It was conceived in 2000 by Jim O'Leary and established by members of the Flexible Packaging Assn. Tax-deductible contributions can be made by sending a check to Jim O'Leary, National Starch and Chemical Co., 10 Finderne Ave., Bridgewater, NJ 08807. Make checks out to The Peter A. Rigney Endowed Memorial Fund.

It Was a Very Good Year

EDGEWOOD, NY — Nordmeccanica, the manufacturer of coating and laminating machinery headquartered in Piacenza, Italy, reports 2006 was a “remarkable” year in North America. Customers included Nordenia USA, Winpak, Hood Packaging, Multifilm, ClearLam, PolyCello, Ultraflex, FlexStar, FlexoTransparent, Aladdin, and Classic Packaging.

Company president Antonio Cerciello also has implemented improvements in both the sales and after-sales structures of the North American operation. And, he reports, all Nordmeccanica products for North America now are delivered complete with UL-CSA certification.

Dryers Added to Pilot Lines

CLEVELAND, OH — C.A. Litzler reports the development and construction of a new Perfect Float flotation dryer system for Chemsultants Intl., Mentor, OH. The project involves dryers for two coating lines: One is a 30-in. dryer with three zones, and the second is a 10-in., single-zone dryer.

The dryer modules, said to be flexible enough to accommodate future rolls for an arch dryer and/or single-sided airfoil flotation, will be integrated with Chemsultants' new pilot coaters.

AIMCAL Has a New Blog

FORT MILL, SC — The Assn. of Industrial Metallizers, Coaters and Laminators (AIMCAL) has launched a blog dedicated to extrusion coating, with Dr. Eldridge M. Mount, AIMCAL consultant and principal of Emmount Technologies, as blogmaster. It will provide focused content to help converters boost productivity and optimize laminations and other extrusion-coated structures. It will deliver process information to improve bonding, toughness, heat sealing, and more, as well as offer information from end-users, material suppliers, equipment builders, and associated vendors. The new blog, which joins three others sponsored by AIMCAL, can be found at (For more on AIMCAL, see p62.)

Hudson-Sharp Makes a Move

GREEN BAY, WI — The assembly operations for Hudson-Sharp do Brasil will move to the Hudson-Sharp Machine Co. manufacturing headquarters in Green Bay, to “simplify operations and eliminate redundancy,” explains president and CEO Rod Drummond.

“We will continue assembly operations in Araraquara, Brazil, until the transition is complete to ensure no interruptions in machine shipments or service of Hudson-Sharp machinery,” says Drummond. “After the transition the Brazil operation will continue to provide full sales support, a spare parts inventory, and technical support from Araraquara.”

Getting Bigger — and Bolder

ST. CHARLES, IL — Filmquest Group announces the completion of the first stage of what it calls a “bold acquisition plan.” By acquiring Film Products, Bolingbrook, IL, and Patison Trading Co., Mason, OH, Filmquest has more than tripled its size. Terms were not disclosed.

Filmquest and Film Products are merchant converters of plastic film; Patison is a distribution company supplying plastic films from strategic locations throughout North America.

Filmquest Group is under a letter of intent on another acquisition scheduled to close this summer, and discussions are underway to acquire several additional companies. Some of the companies under consolidation are smaller competitors with up to $25 million in sales.

Filmquest also announces the promotion of Mack Owens to VP. He will head up the warehouse and precision slitting operation for plastic packaging in Greer, SC, while retaining his general manager title.

Software, Prepress Agreement

ROLLING MEADOWS, IL — Screen USA reports an OEM agreement with Artwork Systems, Bristol, PA, in which Screen will integrate ArtPro, Artwork Systems' specialized packaging software, with Screen's Trueflownet prepress environment. Branded Packstudio SE, the solution will be integrated fully into Truflownet to give users a cohesive interface and universal access to a wide choice of prepress production tools.

Shorewood is Expanding

NEW YORK, NY — Shorewood Packaging, a business of International Paper, announces a new office in London from which it will serve manufacturers of home entertainment products in the UK and parts of Europe, including Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, and France.

Shorewood also has tripled the size of its office in Los Angeles, CA, saying both moves are part of aggressive investment growth strategy.

Wisconsin Converters Meet

DEPERE, WI — With representatives from more than 40 converting and related companies in attendance, a new industry group — Converting Influence — convened its first meeting last fall. The event was held at the Bordini Center of St. Norbert College in DePere. Attendees, who were mostly from northeast Wisconsin, included producers of food service napkins, medical drapes, wet wipes, and foil-pouched flexible packaging. Says Robert Shade, Sierra Coating, Green Bay, WI, “It was really helpful to learn about the services of other companies. We have a better idea of who to turn to when we need converting partners with other capabilities.”

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Andritz Doing BMB Paper Coating

BÜLACH, SWITZERLAND — Bachofen+Meier (BMB), an affiliate of the Kroenert Group, has divested the area of paper coating (Mastercoat) to the newly founded Andritz-BMB AG, Graz, Austria. Andritz produces machines for the pulp and paper industry and expects to extend its position in the area of paper refinement with the BMB Mastercoat acquisition.

BMB's Converting division is expected to be strengthened through internal focus on the converting market and through cooperation with the other members of the Kroenert Group.

Pactiv Package the “Best”

FALLS CHURCH, VA — The Foodservice & Packaging Inst. (FPI) reports Pactiv Corp.'s tamper-evident package with in-mold labeling was named the 2006 Foodservice Package of the Year in the fifth annual QSR Magazine-FPI Foodservice Packaging Awards competition.

The packaging technology won first place in the Manufacturing Innovation category and was called the “best of the best” from among 143 entries in seven categories.

Judges said, “High-speed robotics, in-cavity labeling, high-pressure injection molding all coming together to produce a tamper-evident package with superior visual appeal is a most impressive, industry-leading achievement. And the fact that it's microwavable, dual-ovenable, freezable, and re-washable/reusable makes it very consumer friendly.”

Donation Celebrates CTP

ROCHESTER, NY — Kodak is donating a complete thermal CTP solution to Arizona State Univ. (ASU) Graphic Information Technology program. The package includes the Kodak Magnus 400 platesetter (pictured), a Prinergy workflow system, Thermal Direct nonprocess printing plates, InSite software, and Staccato screening software. The donation is part of a celebration at Kodak marking the 10th anniversary of thermal CTP technology. “Kodak's generosity and its continued commitment to education are instrumental in providing our students with hands-on experience with advanced thermal CTP technology,” says Dr. Thomas E. Schildgen, chairman of the Dept. of Technology Management and Professor of Graphic Information Technology at ASU.

Acquisition of Cutting Lines

ERIE, MI — Core Systems Intl. has acquired the full product line of core cutting and handling equipment from Coastal Automation (formerly of AHS & Machine Design Service, Appleton, WI). The equipment line includes the trade names The Barracuda tabletop core cutter; the Shark semi-automatic core cutter; the Piranha automatic core cutter; and the Great White fully programmable core cutter. Also acquired were the US patents for the ratcheting knife blade and the dual-mandrel core cutters, available in most models.

Leybold Takes Parent's Name

EXPORT, PA — Leybold Vacuum now will be known as Oerlikon Leybold Vacuum USA, the result of an edict from parent company Oerlikon, Zurich, Switzerland, that all divisions carry its name.

Moving into Multilayer

With customers requesting broader product lines and business on the rise, Packaging Personified, Carol Stream, IL, recently made the move from strictly monolayer to multilayer films with the purchase of a Kirion three-layer blown film system from Kiefel.

“After researching several of the leading suppliers, we chose Kiefel as our first multilayer system,” says Dan Imburgia, general manager at Packaging Personified. “The Kiefel system offered the best technical solution for our needs.”

The new line, which will produce films to 86 in. wide in roll diameters to 48 in., features Kiefel's Kirion C control system and C2 auto profiling system.

Packaging Personified, which also has a plant in Sparta, MI, is an extruder, printer, and converter of flexible packaging serving customers in many markets, including fresh and frozen foods, pet food, consumer goods, medical applications, and more.
Supplier Information: Kiefel — PFFC-ASAP 330.

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