Board Converting News, January 1, 2024

BoardConverting Serving the North American Corrugated and Folding Carton Industries for 40 years January 1, 2024 VOL. 40, NO. 1

Vanguard Companies Thriving From the ‘Underground’ Up BY LEN PRAZYCH Starting a business from “the ground up” is common practice among entrepreneurs. Investors are always looking to get in on “the ground floor” of new opportunities. Military leaders and sales managers of growing companies in the corrugated and folding carton industries of- ten prefer to have “boots on the ground” to conduct their mission. It

BCN Welcomes Flexo Market News In This Week's Issue This week’s Board Converting News (BCN) marks the first issue that incorporates its sister publication, Flexo Market News ( FMN ) , which begins on page 37 with news of the FlexoOne and acquisition by Brook + Whittle of Guilford, Connecticut. Last month, BCN announced that it would be combining its editorial, sales and manage- ment teams that have served the corrugated, folding carton, and flexo industries respec- tively, for more than a combined 65 years. "We are excited to announce that this col- laborative effort has now come to fruition as an added value to our customers with ad- ditional levels of editorial coverage for our readers and sponsors, said Len Prazych, Pres- ident/Publisher of NV Business Publications, parent company of BCN and FMN Flexo Market News is devoted to the devel- opment of new markets within the flexograph- ic industry and to promoting the strengths, benefits and advantages of flexography. For questions, contact Len Prazych at lpra- or Greg Kishbaugh, Editor and VP of Sales of Flexo Market News , at Visit for more.

is rare, however, for a business to operate literally underground. But with a skillful blend of business acumen and entrepreneurial spirit, Van- guard Companies in Kansas City, Missouri has been doing just that for over forty years. Many readers of Board Converting News, as well as members of the corrugated box-making community, are familiar with Vanguard Packag- ing. Jack and Bobbie Mathes founded Vanguard in 1975, initially sell- ing poly bags and packaging supplies. Vanguard started manufactur- ing corrugated boxes in 1979 when they moved into the Hunt Midwest caves. SubTropolis, the World’s Largest Underground Business Com- plex®, a 55-million-square-foot area of artificial caves that have been carved out of a 270 million-year-old limestone deposit in Kansas City, Missouri. The caves offer flexibility for expansion and seasonal surges, as well as on-site management, maintenance, and 24/7 security advan- tages. CONTINUED ON PAGE 24 Vanguard Packaging is located in SubTropolis, the World’s Largest Under- ground Business Complex®, a 55-million-square-foot area of artificial caves that have been carved out of a 270-million-year-old limestone deposit in Kansas City, Missouri.


6 x x 8 x x 12 x x 26 x x 4 AICC Celebrating With Rat Pack, The Fonz For 50th Anniversary 10 DS Smith Reduces Energy With Steam Recycling Technology PPC Celebrates Legacy, Shares Vision for 2024 20 Sonoco To Raise Prices For Converted Paperboard Goods

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Machinery and Handling for the Corrugated Board Industry

Fibre Box Association To Present At Sustainability In Packaging US The Fibre Box Association (FBA) announced its upcoming appearance at the Sustainability in Packaging Conference set for March 6-8 at the Swissotel Chicago. Join FBA’s Se- nior Vice President, Rachel Kenyon, and a host of industry leaders for timely updates and firsthand industry insights into the emerging developments, notable market trends, and cutting-edge packaging solutions that are steering the supply chain towards an increasingly circular economy and more sustainable future. Beginning in the afternoon of March 6, the three-day event will kick-off with three pre-conference workshops followed by two days of general sessions. Hear from rep- resentatives from across the supply chain and extend learnings by choosing a ticket with all three workshops in- cluded. Decide which workshop to attend in person, and access presentations and videos from the other two af- ter the event. The event features experts from Starbucks, Steptoe & Johnson, P&G, Sonoco, Cruz Foam, EFI, Munch- kin, ALPLA INC., Carton Council of North America, Tetra Pak, Interact Boulder, Carbon Better, Lifecycles, Zacros America, University of Michigan, American Forest & Paper Association, The Aluminum Association, and more. To register, book accommodations and view the com- plete agenda, visit .

AVERAGE CONTAINERBOARD PRICES The average prices reported are tabulated from prices PAID by various sources throughout the United States the week previous to issue. Prices in some areas of the country may be higher or lower than the tabulated average. The prices tabulated here are intended only for purposes of reference. They do not connote any commitment to sell any material at the indicated average. Transactions may be completed at any time at a price agreed upon by seller and purchaser.

REGION E. Coast Midwest Southeast Southwest

42# Kraft liner $955.00-960.00 $970.00-980.00 $970.00-980.00 $ 970.00-980.00 $1000.00-1010.00 $973.00-983.00

26# Semi-Chem. Medium

Short Ton Del. Short Ton Del. Short Ton Del. Short Ton Del. Short Ton Del. Short Ton Del.

$ 890 .00-9 4 0.00 $9 0 5.00-9 2 5.00 $9 0 5.00-9 2 5.00 $9 0 5.00-9 2 5.00 $9 2 5.00-9 4 5.00 $9 0 8.00-9 2 8.00

West Coast U.S. Average

SHEET PRICES BY REGION (AVERAGE) Per 1MSF, local delivery included, 50MSF single item order, truckload delivery. Sheets

E. Coast Midwest South-SW S. CA N.CA/WA-OR US Aver.

200# 275#



$62.69 $82.80

$85.35 119.54

$73.13 101.29












107.46 118.45

114.69 129.32

116.54 137.25 117.82 145.56

141.08 148.46

122.76 131.80

CANADIAN SHEET PRICES (AVERAGE) In Canadian Dollars, per 1MSF, local delivery included, under 50MSF single item order, truckload delivery. 200# 275# Oyster UC 275#DW 350#DW $78.56 $99.18 $9.00 $96.32 $105.83 CANADIAN LINERBOARD & MEDIUM The average prices reported are tabulated from prices PAID by various sources throughout Canada. Prices may be higher or lower in various areas of the country. The prices tabulated here are intended only for purposes of reference. They do not connote any commitment to sell any material at the indicated average. Transactions may be completed at any time at a price agreed upon by seller and purchaser. Prices are Canadian $ and per metric ton.

42# Kraft Liner 26#

Semi-Chem Medium

East West

$9 2 0.00 $ 96 5.00

$9 1 0.00 $9 4 5.00


January 1, 2024

AICC Announces 50th Anniversary Celebration Plans, Keynote Speakers AICC, The Independent Packaging Association, invites members to take part a momentous occasion as it celebrates 50 years of the independent during the 2024 Spring Meeting in Palm Desert, California.

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Additionally, it has announced two speakers slated to deliver powerful keynotes: Emmy Award-Winning Actor, Author, Director Henry Winkler and economic expert Dr. Pippa Malmgren. Join AICC members for a momentous occasion as CONTINUED ON PAGE 6

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January 1, 2024

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from Winkler's speeches. Winkler is also celebrating an anniversary with 50 years of success in Hollywood this year. He continues to be in demand not only as an actor and producer, but as a director as well. His autobiography, “Being Henry ... The Fonz and Beyond,” was published in October 2023 and he co-stars on the hit HBO dark com- edy, “Barry.” Of all the titles he has received, the ones he relishes most are husband, father and grandfather. Winkler and his wife have three children and six grandchildren. They re- side in Los Angeles with their two dogs. Dr. Pippa Malmgren is an authority on geopolitical, eco- nomic and technological trends. Boxes have always been

AICC celebrates 50 years of the independent. The eve- ning will feature a sit-down dinner, a special tribute to the

AICC “founding fathers,” leadership, and members over the past 50 years. The evening will culminate with a Rat Pack tribute show as Frank Sina- tra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis, Jr. come to life in this nostalgic reunion concert. Following the tribute show, enjoy dancing with a Big Band Dance

Henry Winkler

Band. Evening dress is formal, black tie optional. Keynote Speakers Through humorous anecdotes and inspirational life les- sons about overcoming adversity to his storied career in television and entertainment, groups of all ages can learn

a key indicator of where the world economy is going. Today, the outlook is confused because technology is changing so fast and geopolitics and

domestic politics are interfering with busi- nesses globally. The outlook for growth is

Pippa Malmgren

good. Boxes will be in demand, but even boxes will need to keep up with technol- ogy to capture the coming gifts of innova- tions that are transforming the world econ- omy for the better. Malmgren is an economist who makes sense of the world economy by writing books, by founding tech businesses, by advising policymakers around the world and through public speaking and teach- ing. She is a Senior Advisor to The Mona- co Foundry. A start-up incubator for im- pact-led founders, and a Special Advisor to Avonhurst, a legal and consulting firm in the UK specializing in deals, policy and capital raising. She served President George W. Bush in the White House as Special Assistant to the President and on The National Eco- nomic Council. She was responsible for fi- nancial market issues and handled Enron and Sarbanes Oxley. After 9/11 she was also responsible for assessing Terrorism Risks to the Economy and technology as a source of geopolitical competitiveness. Her most recent bestseller, “The Infinite Leader,” won the International Press Award for the Best Book on Leadership for 2021. To register, visit . Book your room as soon as possible at the JW Marri- ott Desert Springs Resort before the group cut-off date on March 12 to guarantee availability. For more information, contact Laura Mihalick at or call (703) 836-2422.


January 1, 2024


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AF&PA Applauds Veto Of Tropical Deforestation-Free Procurement Act The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) Pres- ident and CEO Heidi Brock released the following state- ment in response to New York Governor Kathy Hochul vetoing the Tropical Deforestation-Free Procurement Act (S.4859-A/A.5682-A): “The American Forest & Paper Association applauds Governor Hochul’s decision to veto New York’s Tropical Deforestation-Free Procurement Act. The U.S. paper and wood products industry depends on sustainable forest growth. We champion sustainable forestry. “The proposed legislation brought significant con- cerns for our industry impacting non-tropical forest prod- ucts, like cardboard boxes and paper bags. “It would have also created trickle-down effects for our industry’s circular supply chain and raised serious questions on the trade restrictive approach to forest man- agement. “New York lawmakers should instead engage in di- alogue with the international community recognizing sustainably managed forests and wood product supply chains that already exist in North America.” The forest products industry accounts for approxi- mately five percent of the total US manufacturing GDP and employs about 925,000 people.

Box Shipments ( U.S. Corrugated Product Shipments) Industry Shipments In Billions of Square Feet Month September 2023



Percent Change Avg Week Percent Change

2023 2022

3 0.911 3 2.734

-5. 6

7. 728 7. 794

- 0.8

Industry Total

September 2023

Year-to Date



Percent Change Avg Week Percent Change

2023 2022

285.619 305.519

- 6.5

7. 556 7.998

- 5.5

Industry Total

Containerboard Consumption (Thousands of Tons)



Percent Change Year-to-Date Percent Change

2023 2022

2. 5387 2. 6314

- 3.5

23.3187 24.8978

- 6 .3

Container Board Inventory - Corrugator Plants (Thousands of Tons)

Corrugator Plants Only


Percent Change Weeks of Supply

Percent Change

Sept. Aug.

2.2 15 2 2. 1606


3. 5 3. 6

- 2.8

Shipping Days




2023 2022

2 0 2 1

1 89 1 91

SOURCE: Fibre Box Association

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January 1, 2024

DS Smith Installs Steam Recycling Technology To Reduce Energy Atlanta, Georgia based DS Smith, a leading provider of sustainable, fiber-based packaging worldwide, announced the installation of new steam recycling technology they say will reduce energy consumption by 20 percent in its Columbia, South Carolina corrugated packaging facility. This investment is part of DS Smith’s sustainability commit- ments to its North American customers. The new multi-million-dollar Baviera Steam Systems technology installed at the specialty coated box manu- facturing plant recovers condensate typically lost in the corrugation process. Energy savings created through con- densate recovery reduces DS Smith’s carbon footprint in Columbia, and the new technology also increases produc- tivity by reducing maintenance downtime at the plant. “Our South Carolina facility makes water-resistant, fully recyclable Greencoat boxes for fresh poultry and produce providers — agribusinesses that recognize decarboniza- tion as a key factor to their continued success,” said Steven Rose, Managing Director, Packaging, for DS Smith North America Packaging and Paper (NAPP). “With this invest- ment, we are decreasing the amount of natural gas con- sumed at the facility by 20 percent, substantially reducing CO2 emissions while also enabling faster throughput.” Reducing natural gas usage at the DS Smith NAPP

Columbia box plant will yield an estimated 740-ton de- crease in annual CO2 emissions. Decarbonization at this scale is one of several initiatives in North America and Europe driven by DS Smith’s Now and Next sustainability strategy, which aims to reduce emissions by 46 percent in absolute terms by 2030, compared with 2019 levels, and achieve net zero emissions by 2050. The company, which is a member of the United Nations-led Race to Zero campaign1, also participates in the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi)2 and has set a 1.5°C target in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement. The new installation at the Columbia box plant includes Baviera Steam Systems’ Condensate Recovery Unit along with Digital Steam Pumps from Baviera capable of manag- ing the pressure required for corrugation using lightweight and heavyweight papers. Continuous heat transfer control solutions installed with the steam system help to ensure greater consistency, improving control room management and eliminating the need for operator tweaks that can im- pact long-term performance. The new technologies also help reduce downtime needed to adjust steam pressure when changing paper weights or fluting settings, boosting overall volume ca- pacity at the plant by up to 5 percent. Faster changes be- tween board grades will also reduce manufacturing waste. DS Smith has helped its customers replace 762 million problem plastics with fiber-based alternatives since 2020, with a goal to reach 1 billion plastics replaced by 2025.





January 1, 2024

Paperboard Packaging Council Celebrates Its Legacy, Shares Vision For 2024 In 2023, the Paperboard Packaging Council community celebrated our shared history while looking ahead to our bright future. Together, we raised our glasses on the 80th anniversary of the North American Paper- board Packaging Competition—a testament to the legacy of our shared craft and its origins dating back to Robert T. Gair in the 1800s.

We also dedicated time to enhancing our technological progress. With our new member portal, we’re elevating communication and col- laboration across our community. Our supplier members, with their groundbreaking innovations, have driven technological advancements and sustainability, while our principal members have continued to evolve – providing additional value and connections to our member base. We’re also proud to have expanded our community by warmly wel- coming new members, a vital component of the future of PPC. Join us in celebrating our past, commemorating our present efforts, and an- ticipating the promising path ahead. With 570 meeting attendees, 28 benchmarking reports, and more than 120 Boot Camp graduates, we saw incredible growth at our events and programs this year. Similarly, our digital channels continue to stay on the rise with increased followers and engagement across our social platforms and visitors via our website. A Spring Meeting To Remember In Nashville Held from April 19-21 in Music City, PPC's 2023 Spring Outlook & Strategies Conference highlighted key leadership retention strategies, upcoming market trends, economic indicators, and employee retention best practices.

Presentations included an industry overview from Brian Janki, Presi- dent of PaperWorks Industries Inc., and a discussion by Bob Chapman, CONTINUED ON PAGE 14


January 1, 2024

Our long-awaited 2023 Packaging Playbook is finally here. We talk through all the challenges present in

our changing world of corrugated packaging and more importantly, how to solve them.


PPC Celebrates (CONT’D FROM PAGE 12)

The Perfect Combo Get Peak Performance From Your Equipment with Matched Component Sets

Chairman & CEO of Barry-Wehmiller, challenging tradition- al business thinking and emphasizing people-centric lead- ership. Mike Turner, Managing Director of the European Car- ton Makers Association, provided valuable insights into EU packaging legislation that may come to the US. The conference featured collaboration, networking, and the exchange of innovative ideas—not to mention a fantastic trip to the Grand Ole Opry! View key takeaways here. PPC Boot Camps Remain Crucial For Newcomers PPC held two insightful Folding Carton Boot Camps in 2023, embracing a dual approach to education. The first Boot Camp, held in Springfield, MA, in the spring, provid- ed an immersive in-person experience, fostering hands-on learning for newcomers to the industry.

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Later in the fall, a virtual Boot Camp provided acces- sibility to a broader audience. The curriculum covered all steps in the folding carton converting process, starting in sustainably managed forests and ending in the hands of the consumer. Both sessions shared a common goal: to empower in- dustry newcomers with knowledge to help them succeed in their roles, ultimately helping PPC member companies increase their efficiency and employee engagement. PPC is planning two in-person Boot Camps for 2024, as well as a virtual option as part of a larger series of new online educational offerings. Celebrating Creativity & Success At Fall Meeting San Diego provided the perfect backdrop for our Fall Meeting & Leadership Conference with its idyllic climate and world-class attractions. Attendees found the confer- ence presentations enlightening, offering valuable insights into enhancing leadership skills and navigating packaging megatrends while gaining a deeper understanding of cur- rent industry affairs. Celebrating the winners of our 80th Annual North American Paperboard Packaging Competi- tion and 2023 Student Design Challenge was also inspir- ing! These accolades exemplify the excellence and cre- ativity within our industry, and we are excited to see our industry evolve further in 2024. CONTINUED ON PAGE 16

matches between the components that must work in tandem on your exo folder gluers and die-cutters: • Anilox Rollers and Ink Chambers • Anilox and Wiper Rollers • Feed and Pull Rollers • Glue and Meter Rollers You can achieve the press speeds and print quality you need to ll your most demanding orders by pairing your team with The ARChitects of Flexo. Contact ARC today to learn how these engineered matches of exo folder gluer and die-cutter components (new or

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January 1, 2024

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PPC Celebrates (CONT’D FROM PAGE 14)

Submissions Open For 2024 Submit your cartons and rigid boxes NOW for the 81st North American Paperboard Packaging Competition! The deadline is May 1, 2024. More information and the entry form can be found at . Introducing A Robust New Member Portal To continue growing a robust, collaborative, and inspir- ing community of boxmakers, PPC launched a comprehen- sive new member portal in 2023 powered by GrowthZone. A hub for all things PPC, members are currently enjoy- ing: • A new member directory of personal and team contact information that easily facilitates relationship-building. • Resources and access to exclusive, members-only in- formation. • A seamless online event registration process as well as real-time updates about registration and other event-related topics. • A simple referral process so members can help grow PPC, expand our reach, and share paperboard’s sus- tainability story far and wide. • Segmented email lists for tailored communications based on interests. • Forums that allow members to network by exchanging information, sharing resources, ideas, and more. If you still need to log into the new portal, contact PPC Support at for instructions. CONTINUED ON PAGE 18

80 Years Of PPC's Paperboard Packaging Competiton 2023 marks the 80th Annual North American Paper- board Packaging Competition. That’s eight decades of sustainable, innovative design—and eight decades of growth and progress from our many dedicated members.

We salute all who participated, including the top win- ning companies: WestRock, Mill Rock Packaging Holdings, LLC, TPC Printing & Packaging, Graphic Packaging Inter- national, Colbert Packaging Corp., and Pacific Southwest Container.

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January 1, 2024

  

 capacity 

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Pratt Industries Pledges $205K To Int'l Packaging Foundation

PPC Celebrates (CONT’D FROM PAGE 16)

See You In 2024 All PPC Principal Members are welcome to participate in this upcoming Benchmarking Virtual Committee Meet- ing on January 11 and have the opportunity to provide in- put and suggestions to the program.

The International Corrugated Packaging Foundation (ICPF) announced a new 10-year pledge commitment from long- time ICPF supporter, Pratt Industries. “ICPF is grateful to have the continued support of Pratt Industries,” said ICPF President Caitlin Salaverria. “Their generous $205,000 donation will allow us to continue the foundation’s programs and services that aim to grow the labor force of the corrugated packaging industry.” ICPF is currently strengthening existing programs and services, while expanding their work to address other crit- ical needs. This has included creating a social media pres- ence, building partnerships with the education community, beginning to expand student and faculty knowledge at trade schools and community colleges, and developing marketing/communications tools to promote the many benefits of choosing a career in corrugated packaging. “We appreciate the work that ICPF does for the indus- try and look forward to continuing to work closely together over the years to come,” said David Dennis, Chief Com- mercial Officer, Pratt Industries. Pratt Industries is America’s 5th largest corrugated packaging company and one of the world’s largest, pri- vately-held 100 percent recycled paper and packaging company. For more information visit .

Other key dates include: • Spring Outlook & Strategies Conference, April 17-19, Dallas (Frisco), Texas: Our three-day Spring Conference helps build valuable relationships with peers, and pro- vides cutting-edge insights from industry professionals, thought leaders, and noted economists. • Folding Carton Boot Camp, May 14-15, PPC Headquar- ters: This is an essential training opportunity for those new to cartons or the industry and non-plant personnel. • Fall Meeting & Leadership Conference, September 30-October 2, Atlanta, Georgia.


January 1, 2024

Your Corrugator Could Use More Brain Power... And the Precision of AI

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The CoparSolutions SyncMaster AI enhances both current and next generation corrugators making operations run smarter, more efficient and more reliable. CoparSolutions products are customized to the exact ways you operate. u Automatically aligns & removes splices for grade and width changes u Stores & recalls each grade’s process values u Closed-loop Process Control eliminates ‘guess work’ and operator error Fully Synchronized Splice Control:


Göpfert Appoints Michael O’Brien As New Service Manager For US Market Wiesentheid, Germany based Göpfert Maschinen GmbH announced Michael J. O’Brien has joined Göpfert Machin- ery as its North American Service Manager.

roles in service, production, manufacturing and technical support. Göpfert is delighted to welcome O´Brien to its team and wishes him every success with his new tasks. Registration Open For AI XPerience Conference AICC, the Independent Packaging Association, announced open registration for the AI XPerience. The AI XPerience Conference, dedicated to understanding artificial intelli- gence in the packaging manufacturing industry, will take place on May 14-16 in Rosemont, Illinois. Gain valuable insights from industry leaders, visionar- ies, and AI experts who are transforming the packaging manufacturing landscape. Discover how AI can reshape packaging design, quality control, supply chain optimiza- tion, and intelligent automation.

Having spent the past two decades building relationships with American and Canadian customers, in both in- dependent and integrated plants, resolving technical challenges and planning growth and development initiatives, O’Brien is charged with ex- panding Göpfert's service organiza-

Michael O'Brien

tion in North America. His background includes many years of management

Join Xperience to unlock the potential of AI and revolutionize your packaging products for a smarter, more efficient, box plant operation. Register at . Spaces are filling up quickly, so be sure to take ad- vantage of the early bird registration dis- count, available until January 12. For more information, contact Taryn Pyle at or Chelsea May at Sonoco Announces Price Hike For All Converted Paperboard Products Hartsville, South Carolina based Sonoco announced it will raise the price for all con- verted paperboard products by a minimum of six percent, effective with shipments in the United States and Canada, on or after February 1, 2024. “This price increase is necessary due to continued increases in costs for uncoat- ed recycled paperboard (URB), our pri- mary raw material,” said Mike Thompson, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Sonoco’s North American Converted Pa- per Products Division. Founded in 1899, Sonoco is a global provider of packaging products. With net sales of approximately $7.3 billion in 2022, the company has approximately 22,000 employees working in more than 320 op- erations around the world, serving some of the world’s best-known brands. For more information, visit at .


ASDI offers: • 40 years of experience with separators, cyclones, conveyors and more • Sequential, Zero-Defect and various types of Scrap Systems • Each system is guaranteed to meet customer specifications • T urnkey Systems-handling all grades of paper and paperboard • In ground and overhead return conveyor systems direct to balers • Replace your undersized or aging cyclone over a two or three-day weekend • Representing a complete line of shredders, wet scrubbers and filters • NF PA compliant systems, ISN Network

Air Systems Design Inc .

50 East Court Mandeville, La 70471

Ph: 985-875-7777 Fx: 985-875-7778


email: •


January 1, 2024

Koenig & Bauer Appoints Chief Executive Officer, Deputy CEO

Würzburg, Germany based Koenig & Bauer, a global tech- nology provider with a focus on special printing applica- tions, announced the appointment of two key leaders ef- fective as of January 1. Dr. Andreas Pleßke to the position of Chief Executive Officer. Pleßke has been a member of Koenig & Bauer AG’s Management Board since 2014 and spokesman for the Management Board with responsibility for the Spe- cial segment since 2021. At the same time, Dr. Stephen Kimmich, Chief Financial Officer, has also been appointed Deputy Chief Executive Officer. Kimmich has been Chief Financial Officer since 2020. “Dr. Pleßke and Dr. Kimmich have successfully guid- ed the company with their colleagues over the past few years, some of which have not been easy, and have set a decisive course for the future,” said Ing Raimund Klinkner, Chairman of the Supervisory Board. “I am delighted that this decision will now strengthen both key positions and the roles of the two Management Board members.” Koenig & Bauer systems can print almost all substrates, displays, labelling, decors, magazines, advertising, and newsprint. With a history spanning more than 200 years, Koenig & Bauer is the worl'd oldest printing press manu- facturer and today masters almost all printing processes.


January 1, 2024

The best of

two worlds

Two companies team up for your success!

Koenig & Bauer Celmacch’s expertise with converters have enabled us to develop machines for you with the highest technological standards in the industry. This supports maximum reliability, quality and flexibility. Our range of products meet different investment strategies and productivity requirements, ranging from entry-level models to machines that are equipped with the highest levels of automation, sophistication and the highest throughput.

Contact us for information on how you can become the next success story. kevin.erbe

Vanguard Thriving (CONT’D FROM PAGE 1)

Built-in Sustainability Working in a facility 150 feet beneath the Earth’s sur- face may sound unsettling, but the caves provide a natural climate-controlled environment that is perfect for produc- ing corrugated products. It also offers significant energy savings, reducing Vanguard’s “carbon footprint.” A typical SubTropolis building is more energy-efficient than almost any other U.S. manufacturing facility or warehouse. With fewer building materials, Vanguard utilizes natu- ral resources for floors and ceilings in the production and office areas, resulting in less waste and less maintenance with coated rock ceilings and stained concrete floors. The underground location also reduces energy con- sumption and lowers utility costs while providing a consis- tently comfortable climate that increases worker produc- tivity. Moreover, the naturally secure environment protects assets and lowers insurance costs. Vanguard believes in and runs their business with en- vironmental sustainability as a foundation of their core val- ues. According to Jim Beard, CEO, for a company to be efficient, safe, and socially responsible, it needs to have three legs of the stool, and if one leg is missing, the com- pany becomes unstable. Thus, Vanguard maintains certifi- cations in Quality (ISO 9001), Environmental Management (14001), and Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems (45001), among others. Jim Beard says that “re- sponsibility to our customers, our employees, and our environment is a big part of what separates us from their competition.” Onward And Upward During the 1980s, Vanguard expanded its services be- yond brown boxes and diversified its offerings. In 1990, they acquired Missouri Container, a local company that specialized in laminating offset print labels to graphic box- es and POP displays. This acquisition was a significant step towards offering graphic and display services. Later in the 90s, Vanguard Label, now known as Great Plains Packaging, was created. At this time, Vanguard also start- ed to print higher graphics and process work on a 5-color rotary die-cutter. In the early 2000s, Vanguard began working with Walmart and became a leader in the industry’s sustain- ability movement, going on to win the 2010 Greener Pack- aging and Innovator of the Year Awards. In the early to mid-2000s, they opened the St. Louis Missouri and Ben- tonville, Arkansas sales and design offices as well as their assembly and fulfillment division, Advanced Logistics and Fulfillment (ALF). Owning and operating their own fulfill- ment center gave them the ability to offer the full turnkey solution customers needed without being dependent on outside sources. Today, Vanguard Companies comprise three active op- erations. Vanguard Packaging, also known as the “Mother Ship,” is the main operation producing industrial packag-



January 1, 2024


MORE BOXES EVERY MINUTE . . . PERIOD! Since 1955 we have been serving the corrugated industry with both new and used equipment. Now more than ever, we offer practical and affordable solutions to meet the needs of today’s boxmaker.

SHINKO Super Alpha High Speed Quick Set Flexo Folder Gluer

• Fast 2 minute set up • Fast run speeds up to 450 SPM • Fixed frame architecture • Fully servo driven • Set-up while running • Extremely accurate registration • Energy efficient Sizes Available: 23” X 71” to 47” X 106” Available for immediate shipment.

1486 St. Paul Avenue, Gurnee, Illinois 60031 USA 847-949-5900 800-621-4343

SINCE 1955

Vanguard Thriving (CONT’D FROM PAGE 24)


ing, retail packaging, signage, and POP Displays. Great Plains Packaging manufactures pressure-sensitive labels, spiral-wound paper tubes, cores, and edge guards. Ad- vanced Logistics and Fulfillment provides display assem- bly, packout, special packs, promotional packaging, and 3PL services. Vanguard employs more than 260 people, a number that can reach over 600 with its seasonal fulfill- ment business. The company also maintains its own fleet of trucks and local drivers. Vanguard currently runs two shifts on major equipment in certain parts of the company and runs seven days a week with a variety of flex shift options.


Advantzware provides a comprehensive system to address the business management needs of the independent box business, as well as the ERP requirements of full scale pack- aging plants and integrated companies. With modules for estimating, scheduling, production, inventory and account- ing, this scalable system supports companies that produce corrugated boxes, folding cartons, point of purchase dis- plays, assembled partitions, and paperboard products. AIR CONVEYING CORPORATION Air Conveying Corporation is a leader in the industry of Pneumatic Conveying Systems and has been in business since 1968. As an equipment manufacturer rather than sim- ply a sales organization, we have complete control over the quality of material and products which make up your pro- posed system. Our equipment is found in printing, folding carton and corrugated plants throughout the world. We've been designing, manufacturing and engineering pneumatic conveying systems since 1984. We partner with our customers to ensure they operate efficiently and guar- antee our systems meet or exceed their specifications. ASDI specializes in full pull-through systems trim separators, and NFPA compliant systems with full electronic controls. AMTECH SOFTWARE AIR SYSTEMS DESIGN, INC. Amtech offers the industry’s most innovative and com- prehensive corrugated and packaging ERP, integrated scheduling software, and engineered automation technol- ogy. For over 30 years, Amtech has kept our customers competitive in an ever-changing economy with customer digital storefronts and workflows, business intelligence, automated scheduling for corrugators, converting and shipping, proactive roll stock and inventory management. APEX INTERNATIONAL World’s largest Anilox and Glue & Metering roll manufac- turer, providing the widest selection of corrugated engrav- ings and complementary services. Anilox engraving options available from our North American manufacturing facility include elongated 75°, 60°, 45°, plus Apex’s patented GTT technology. Glue rolls are produced with Hardened Stain- less Steel and a max TIR of 10 µ for Single, Double Facers.

Vanguard Packaging houses three rotary diecutters, including a new 4-color Apstar, above, and SUN Latitude Flexo Folder Gluer, below.

As Vanguard expanded its presence in the corrugat- ed display industry, it also made significant improvements in flexographic printing, laminating, die-cutting, specialty gluing, and digital printing. When looking at the mix of business, Vanguard knew they needed similar technology with more capacity and faster speeds for not just small- er orders but the mid – larger sized orders. In 2012/2013, Vanguard purchased its first multi-pass machines, marking its entry into the digital printing space. Vanguard’s equip- ment list includes redundancy in almost every area, pro-


Albany International has a corrugator belt for every appli- cation. Our reputation for durable performance is the trade- mark of the most dependable belts in service today.



January 1, 2024

Seasons Greetings from all of us at Board Converting News

Wishing you and yours a safe, healthy, and prosperous 2024 !

Thank you for allowing us to be your source for the latest industry news and information !

Vanguard Thriving (CONT’D FROM PAGE 26)


viding invaluable peace of mind during critical production times. The company’s main production facility, located in caves, houses three rotary die cutters, including a new 4-color APSTAR, a Sun Latitude Flexo Folder Gluer, two Automatan laminators, three specialty gluers (including a tri-feeder), and a 6-color Mark Andy press. HP digital presses, including a Scitex and a PageWide C500, are complemented by a Highcon Euclid laser cutter and two Zund flatbed cutters, all of which are operated in a nearby above-ground facility.


ARC International is a world leader in the manufacturing of roller products for flexography. The latest nano-technology laser engraving in our NC and NV manufacturing facilities ensures superior quality and consistency in anilox rollers.


AES is a leading full-service provider of integrated convey- ance systems specializing in scrap, trim, and dust. AES en- gineers custom scrap systems and works as a partner in process improvement to help businesses achieve greater profitability, productivity, and sustainability. Products include balers, shredders/hoggers, core shredders, filters, fans, and specialized dust control and collection systems. AES is the ex- clusive distributor for the AirShark Rotary Material Separator. For a wide variety of new and used equipment on to- day’s market, visit our website at BAUMER HHS CORPORATION hhs is a global leader in advanced gluing, camera verifica- tion and quality assurance systems for the packaging indus- try. Zero-defect quality and elevated production speeds are key parameters in the manufacturing of corrugated boxes. With hhs Xcam Box Monitoring and non-contact flap gluing of corrugated board, hhs offers every option for quality as- surance in the production of boxes with flexo folder gluers. AMERICAN CORRUGATED MACHINE BLOWER APPLICATION COMPANY (BLOAPCO) BloApCo has served the corrugated industry since 1933 with a variety of scrap handling solutions, including Hori- zontal Floor Shredders, Trim Cutters, and Material Handling Fans and Conveying Systems. BloApCo Shredders allow for continuous shredding and pneumatic removal of sheet waste stacks of all sizes, roll slab, cores, and carton scrap.

One of two Automatan Laminators, above, and an Alliance FeedMAX prefeeder, below, ensure high quality and produc- tion speeds.


Leading manufacturer and installer of quality retrofits, up- grades and replacement parts for S&S and Prime Flexo Folder Gluers. Specialists in reconditioning of S&S Flexo Folder Gluers, including ink, air and electrical systems.

Additionally, tube and core winders/cutters, an edge guard machine, and multiple pieces of ancillary equipment to support the company’s businesses are also located in

the above-ground facility. Resources For Growth


The company has added new positions and promot- ed team members while expanding the senior leadership team, creative department, sales and marketing teams, prepress department, and assembly and fulfillment oper- ation. This expansion has enabled Vanguard to manage

Serving the corrugated box industry since 1991, Chicago- based Corrugator Belt Service LLC maintains corru- gator belts for peak board quality and performance.



January 1, 2024

Vanguard Thriving (CONT’D FROM PAGE 28)


more projects and inventory effectively. According to Beard, the company is in great shape and is continually looking for ways to expand, grow, and improve. Vanguard has made several upgrades to its ma- chines, systems, and software, with more planned. Van- guard is keeping its eyes open for potential acquisitions to help grow in different market segments and diversify its offering mix. The company is always looking for opportu- nities to expand nationally. The Future of Digital Vanguard was an early adopter of digital technology. They shifted from hand gluing color roll proofs to corrugat- ed display and graphic mock-ups, and began using digital equipment for samples and short production runs. This made them much more efficient and helped them meet the growing demand for digital technology in the market. This allowed them to ramp up production runs of graphic packing and displays by increasing speeds and utilizing multiple sheets at once.


Corrugated Replacements, Inc. is a production powerhouse that manufactures high quality machine parts and replace- ment parts for the corrugated and paperboard converting industries. CRI can redesign, engineer, and manufacture any part while providing a rapid turn-around rate, keeping machines running at their peak performance and limiting down time.

C.U.E., INC.

Makers of single and dual-width Timesaver® Anvil Covers, the premier urethane anvil cover for corrugated die cutting. Timesaver® covers feature construction of solid steel back- ing and solid steel locking components to ensure a precise fit every time. C.U.E., Inc. also offers Dura-Latch and Cor- Lock anvil covers, and urethane Lead Edge Feed Wheels.


The EMBA group supports a complete line of corrugated converting machinery for the worldwide market. EMBA’s Quick Set technology enables the highest productivity across a broad range of converting equipment, from mini to super jumbo. EMBA also includes the McKinley jumbo line of flexo folder gluers and rotary die cutters as well as ser- vice, rebuilds and upgrades for both EMBA and McKinley.


Eaglewood Technologies offers trusted cleaning technolo- gies for the world’s best printers and converters. Solutions include the award winning Sitexco+ Anilox Laser System, the Nanovis Parts Washing System, the Sitexco L10 Label System, the innovative Sanilox™ System or Alphasonics solutions. We also offer Xpress™ mobile cleaning service at your facility or ours. ESKO ArtiosCAD and Kongsberg are the most trusted names in CAD/CAM solutions. Esko’s ArtiosCAD is the most widely used CAD software in the world. Esko’s Kongsberg series of tables brings you reliable, outstanding quality for sample- making and short run production.

As part of their growth plan, they are focused on digital technology. With this in mind, they launched Box Genie, their E-commerce division, in 2020 and installed the Highcon Euclid small-format laser cutter. They made subsequent investments in conveyorization, automation, workflow, color management systems, and software pack- ages to support Box Genie and their growth. Vanguard continues to learn new digital and laser cutting capabili- ties and are considering purchasing another digital press to accommodate their growth. Their goal is to expand their turnkey solutions from concept through delivery while growing their non-display industrial and retail packaging business. The implementation of C500 has allowed Vanguard to seamlessly integrate digital printing into mainstream pro- duction, while adhering to the philosophy of “Making The Complex Simple.” Depending on the retailer, display order sizes can range from 500 to 4,500-plus pieces per component. The Doug Hay, Director of Production Operations, left, and Ed Ball, Production Supervisor, have helped integrate Vanguard's HP C500 digital press into mainstream production.


Domino is a leading manufacturer and distributor of digital printing and product identification solutions. Celebrating its 44th year, Domino is headquartered in the UK and North America headquarters are Illinois. Domino has 25 subsid- iaries, representation in over 120 countries, and over 2,900 employees worldwide .



January 1, 2024

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