Catalan flexible packaging specialist Comexi, has continued its upward development trend in in the CIS and Russian markets following the record results achieved in 2016. During the first six months of 2017, the company delivered a solid performance in the area of flexographic printing, offset printing, laminating and slitting lines in these markets.
According to Comexi, the results have been positively affected by the larger number of orders from local converters and by the fact that packaging prices have improved, providing local producers with more room to develop and invest in modern equipment, which, in turn, will enhance their productivity and raise profits.
Sales are expected to overtake those in 2015 by a good 20%, Comexi said, while the prospects for 2018 also looks extremely promising. The company’s recent ventures into new regions, including Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan and other flexible packaging markets are also expected to boost next year’s turnover figures.
“Currently we are noticing a great interest of the offset printing CI8 technology by some of the largest companies in the area”, said Rashad Ismailov, area manager for Comexi in the region. He noted that that companies are attracted by the “rapid changeovers, great time-to-market, low costs and high quality printing; the only one similar to gravure, which the technology offers – “a great solution between digital printing and flexographic printing for medium and short runs”.
Comexi’s success in these markets is amply demonstrated by the over 150 new machines sold throughout the region since 2004. At the RosUpack trade fair edition in June in Moscow, for example, the company sold a fifth flexographic press - a Comexi F2 ML flexo press with 10 colours - to Russia-based Tom Ltd, part of the KDV Group, a Russian producer of snacks and confectionary products. Earlier this year, Tom Ltd. had already purchased a Comexi DUAL laminator and a Comexi SL2 laminator.
Understanding that training is a key part of successful sales, Comexi established its Centre Tecnològic Manel Xifra Boada SLU in 2013 in Riudellots de la Selva (Spain), where the Comexi headquarters are located. Following the purchase of a third F4 press, a Comexi DUAL laminator with video inspection and a top-of-the-range Comexi S1 DT slitter with lasers and labeller, key customer Uniflex, the leading printing company in the flexographic industry in the CIS countries and Eastern Europe, sent its staff to the centre for a week’s training, to upgrade their knowledge of the lamination field – “Great investments that will enhance their production”, said Ismailov.
And this past September, the centre organised for the tenth time its Russian-language Practical Maintenance Course, specifically targeted at maintenance engineers, section heads and senior operators. The importance of providing training in the native language is not underestimated: every year, the centre schedules between 1 and 2 technical sessions in Russian. The next is on lamination and takes place next year in February.