Association News

NELMA Expo a rousing success

May 22, 2012

The NELMA expo provides a great venue for networking.
The North East Label Manufacturers Association (NELMA) held its annual expo and networking
reception on May 3 at the Hotel Somerset-Bridgewater in Somerset, NJ, USA. The expo featured an exhibition hall with suppliers of products and services for the label printing industry, and was followed by a lively cocktail hour and buffet reception. The organization, which was formed 17 years ago, seeks to provide education and networking opportunities for label manufacturers in the Northeastern United States.

“This year’s NELMA show was very successful,” said Steve Miller, president of NELMA. “Even though the attendance was similar to last year, many vendors told me they came away with some great leads.”

Though a traditionally small show, Miller says that he’d like to see that change. He has taken extra steps to ensure that all attendees are prescreened to ensure compliance with being either narrow web or flexo converters.

“One of our goals each year is to increase the attendance over the previous year. We send out around 1300 invitations and would like to see many more of our narrow web and flexo friends come out and support the show, the vendors and our industry as a whole,” Miller says.

Many converters and suppliers were on hand to share information about new products and services. INX International Ink Co., a global supplier of ink and coating products, introduced its new AquaTech line at the show. The AquaTech ION-T inks are for thermal labels, ION-P is for paper, ION-F is for film, and ION SHEEN is the metallic series. Both the ION-T and –P lines are available in Black, Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Extender. Each of the inks has a shelf life of at least six months.

Representatives from acpo ltd. distributed the company’s new self-wound overlaminates catalog. Lederle, manufacturers of equipment and tools for the flexo industry, was at the show with information about its dies, cylinders and other tools, and about its 7200 and 7300 Series rewind/inspection tables.

“If you have never attended the show, you have no idea what a great time you have missed,” Miller said. “This show is unique in that it may be the only regional show of its type in our industry. Although this is a one-day event, many venders and converters stay over after the show to keep the networking going far in to the night. NELMA’s goal for the future is to rebuild our membership with companies anxious to participate in educational events and mutual strengthening of our companies and our industry.

“Towards this end, NELMA has formed a strategic alliance with Flexo Label Advantage Group (FLAG) to look for ways to educate members and other converters, but most importantly, students studying to enter our industry,” added Miller.

FLAG, founded and lead by John McKay, is a support organization for independent label

The Print Products booth at NELMA
converters, providing buying opportunities for its members and vendor partners. The strategic alliance, McKay and Miller say, will help both organizations increase value to its members. As part of the partnership, McKay was on hand at NELMA to offer new members $300 off the FLAG member initiation fee, which is valid for 30 days from the show date.

McKay said of the event: “Many thanks to NELMA for hosting their 2012 Expo. A lot of time and effort goes into hosting those kinds of events and NELMA really did a great job. Attending the Expo provided a wonderful opportunity to re-connect with old friends and to begin new relationships as well. You never can have enough friends in this business. FLAG also had some great conversations with graduating students from Millersville University. As part of our strategic alliance, NELMA and FLAG will be looking at helping graduates connect with potential employers in the label converting industry. We sincerely thank everyone who stopped by our booth to say hello and for their interest in FLAG. Next year’s NELMA Expo is penciled in our calendar, which I’m sure is already in the planning stages.”

FTA Forum and INFO*FLEX coming to San Diego
Flexographic Technical Association (FTA), the professional society dedicated to advancing the flexographic printing process has announced it has chosen San Diego, CA,  USA, as the destination for its 2013 Annual Forum & INFO*FLEX Exhibition. The events will take place April 28 – May 1 at the San Diego Marriott Marquis & Marina and the San Diego Convention Center.

The Marriott Marquis & Marina –Forum Headquarters – recently completed a $200 million renovation, including 1,360 remodeled rooms and suites with sweeping bay views of the hotel’s private marina on San Diego Bay. Steps away is the convention center where INFO*FLEX will take place. Both venues are minutes from the world-famous San Diego Zoo, and close to the vibrant Gaslamp Quarter entertainment district and Seaport Village, both known for world-class dining and nightlife.

Mark Cisternino, FTA/FFTA president, says, “FTA’s Forum & INFO*FLEX were last in San Diego in 1998 and people have been asking us when are you going back ever since. We are very excited to finally be able to bring these events back to the west coast. We strive to facilitate our members’ attendance at the Forum by moving it to key regional markets throughout the US and Canada year-after-year. San Diego is an ideal location based on its beautiful year-round weather, ease and low cost of travel, and the outstanding hospitality industry that supports conventions throughout the city.”

FTA is currently accepting abstracts for inclusion on the conference program. Those interested can make submissions at The deadline is September 21, 2012. Abstracts are also currently being selected for FTA’s 2012 Fall Conference & Tabletop Exhibition “Efficiency in Flexography: Connecting the Dots,” scheduled for October 15-17 in Milwaukee, WI, USA, and can be submitted via the same webpage. Abstract submissions should describe: significant process control concepts; techniques to improve productivity; FIRST methodologies; expanded gamut; continuous improvement efforts; and optimized workflow initiatives.

The two-and-one-half day event will feature six sessions, a pre-conference session, and a tabletop exhibition that runs concurrently with breaks, lunch and an evening reception. Those interested in exhibiting should contact Jay Kaible, FTA director of business development at 631-737-6020 ext. 20.

Dscoop marks membership milestone
Dscoop has experienced tremendous growth over the past year, and has recently hit the 7,000-member mark globally. Since launching in 2011, Dscoop Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) has signed up 500 members in the past seven months. Since launching in 2009, Dscoop Asia-Pacific has added more than 1,000 members. 

“Hitting these numbers is tremendous, but where we judge ourselves is on the value that we’re bringing to our members,” says Chris Petro, global chairman of Dscoop and CEO of GlobalSoft Digital Solutions. “As an owner of HP Graphic Arts equipment spanning North America and Europe, I think Dscoop offers the best opportunity to connect with other owners and print service providers.”

In 2013, Dscoop will host annual conferences in each region with an accompanying global partner program:
North America: Dscoop8 in February (Nashville, TN, USA)

Asia-Pacific: Dscoop Asia 2013 in May (Beijing, China)

EMEA: Dscoop EMEA in November (location TBD)

“It has been an enormous undertaking to bring Dscoop to this level, but we’ve just begun,” says Eric Hawkinson, global executive director of Dscoop. “This year, we’re rolling out the English-language Marketing to Win Toolkits across the US, Canada, the UK and Australia. Our Dscoop Quarterly newsletters are now available in Mandarin, Korean and Japanese (in addition to English). We will continue to push the envelope and offer in-language benefits as the next step in ensuring members around the world benefit fully from Dscoop.”

“Dscoop’s strong worldwide growth is a testament to the incredible value the organization provides to HP customers,” says Christopher Morgan, senior vice president, Graphics Solutions Business, HP. “The breadth of resources available, the members’ engagement in the community and the open exchange of information are unique in our industry and helping to accelerate the analog-to-digital transformation.”