• Sha Jumari

Miraclon - the new face of Kodak’s Flexo Division

This is an excerpt of the original article, "Miraclon - the New Face of Kodak's Flexo Division." Read the full feature in Labels and Packaging Innovation Asia Issue June 2019.

In November 2018, it was announced that Kodak entered into an agreement with Montagu to sell its Flexographic Packaging division. In April 2019, the sale officially completed and the industry saw the formation of Miraclon. The new company will develop, produce and sell Kodak Flexcel-branded technology solutions.

“Miraclon is a new company, but we still have the same people, same great products, same technology, same R&D - same enthusiasm,” said Chris Payne, CEO of Miraclon.

“We’ve brought the best of what we had at Kodak and with our new company we have the ability to really focus and to be much more agile.”

“When you think about flexo, it’s changing, it’s transforming. Ultimately, we believe flexo is going to be the premium way of making any printed packaging. Our fundamental aim is to transform the flexo industry and make it the packaging printing process of choice, it’s as simple as that,” said Payne.

Transforming Flexo from Craft to Premium

The global flexographic printing market is forecasted to grow to a value of $187 billion by 2023, according to a latest report by Smithers Pira.

Becoming a separate entity from Kodak means that Miraclon will be able to focus solely on its flexo solutions, and according to Payne, achieve the bigger picture goal of advancing the flexo packaging industry.

“To be able to transform the flexo industry, you’ve not only got to drive quality and consistency, you’ve got to make sure that production efficiency in the press room is growing as well. You also have to deal with all aspects of sustainability. Everything the customer is asking for at the end of the day,” said Payne.

“On a very foundational level, we strive for a very close relationship with our customers because we know the closer we are the more we can help them drive efficiency and faster turnaround times for the brands.”

This is key for Miraclon, especially in growing the big brands. Payne estimates that the big brand houses that have many global products under their umbrella, such as Mondelez, Pepsi, Nestle and Unilever, alone own about 50% of all the packaging done worldwide. For these brands, consistency in their supply chain is important as these brands are essentially looking to run the same printing process across the world.

“You have to help brands be more flexible so they can adapt designs for SKUs quicker and bring new products to market faster,” Payne continued. “To do those things, you need to change flexo from the traditional craft way of printing to an automated, production manufacturing process. Our purpose here is to help our customers do all of those things so that together we can change and transform the industry.”

From L-R: Chris Payne, CEO; Sandor Meszaros, Regional Sales Leader APAC; Hersh Lulla, Marketing Manager APAC.

Miraclon has over 300 staff located all over the world, with key locations in Belgium, the US, Mexico, Japan, and Singapore.

“As a business, we have about a third of our people between Japan, Singapore, and our go-to market team for Asia. Having a base in Singapore and being in all the markets is critical for our growth. We’re committed in what we’re building in Asia in total,” said Payne.

For the full feature article, read it in Labels and Packaging Innovation Asia Issue June 2019.

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