People & Places
Obituary Dr. Reinhard Ulbrich, the former Business Director of DuPont’s Cyrel flexo printing plates division in Eu- rope, has passed away at the age of 89. Ulbrich was widely known throughout the printing and packaging industry around the world and played a major role in the development of flexo printing from being almost a cottage industry to the high precision printing technique it is today. Many still regard him as the “King of European Flexo”. Joining DuPont in the Mylar film division in Switzer- land in the early 1960’s, Reinhard progressed up the corporate ladder, moving to Düsseldorf in 1969 as the Manager for films in Germany. A short spell at DuPont’s U.S. corporate headquar- ters in Wilmington, Delaware, he returned to the Pho-
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to Products department in Frankfurt, Germany, and eventually took on the role of Business Manager for the Cyrel business in 1982. Flexo printing at that time was very much the stepchild of the printing in- dustry and DuPont’s flexo plates were all made in the United States. After in- tensive lobbying and persuasion, Dr. Ulbrich persuaded DuPont manage- ment to install a new production line
for Cyrel plates based in Frankfurt and hired young, enthusiastic printing engineers and sales staff to ag- gressively grow the business. Born in Silesia, then a part of Germany that today belongs to Poland, Reinhard turned his attention east after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. He focused on growing flexo printing in the former eastern bloc and Russia, in particular where many credit him with in- troducing flexo printing there, helping to build the economy there after the revolution. Even after his re- tirement from DuPont, Dr. Ulbrich traveled frequently to Moscow and helped introduce flexo printing cours- es at the Russian Academy of Printing in Moscow, for which he was awarded an honorary doctorate. Dr. Ulbrich leaves behind Katrin, his wife of many years and his two daughters, Barbara and Caroline as well as grandchildren Alicia and Gabriel. Strat-Tac Ralph Adkins will assume the role of Marketing Di- rector for Strata-Tac, St. Charles, Illinois, a manufactur- er of pressure sensitive self-adhesive products and top coated films.
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14 June 8, 2020 Flexo Market News
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