The purchase is ePac’s second expansion with the high-capacity HP Indigo 20000 flexible packaging press since launching just 18 months ago with one HP Indigo unit. ePac currently uses three HP Indigo 20000 digital presses in Madison and Boulder, and the 10 new units will be deployed coast-to-coast in new facilities opening in Los Angeles, Houston, Chicago, and Miami.
“ePac helps simplify how brands of all sizes buy flexible packaging. Rapid turnaround time, low minimums, customization, graphics quality and the ability to print to demand differentiate ePac from conventional flex pack converters,” says Jack Knott, CEO, ePac Flexible Packaging. “Printing is the core enabling technology we have built ePac on, with the HP Indigo 20000 serving as the foundation of our manufacturing platform. ePac’s collaboration with HP is fundamental to our growth strategy, as we look to adding ePac sites in the months ahead.”
The HP Indigo 20000 Digital Press provides converters the freedom to produce nearly any flexible packaging application, in addition to labels and shrink sleeves on film or paper. “HP Indigo digital printing technology means greater flexibility for brands and entrepreneurs, and a more meaningful connection for their consumers,” says Santi Morera, global head of Graphics Solutions Business, HP Inc. “HP is thrilled to play an integral role in ePac’s rapid rise to success over the past two years – and with today’s purchase, it’s a relationship we support proudly in the months and years to come.”
Smithers Pira forecasts growth in flexible packaging, with digital forecast to increase at more than 17.1% CAGR in the five-year period to 2022, when this market is expected to reach more than $750 million. “High-quality printing allows converters to offer new features and functions in flexible packaging to brands and retailers with economic short runs and faster turnaround key advantages. Innovative campaigns are boosting end user engagement and experiences, opening new business opportunities for the early adopters,” says Sean Smyth, Smithers Pira.
Since its release in 2014, converters around the world have purchased more than 115 HP Indigo 20000 digital presses. The 30" (76 cm) HP Indigo 20000 can print virtually any sized flexible packaging application with unlimited variation and support demand for growing SKUs, alongside benefits of reduced waste from minimal setup and production of only the quantities needed.
The HP Indigo 20000 is connected to HP PrintOS, allowing PSPs to monitor the press performance in real time anywhere and anytime, and thus continuously optimize operations. Powerful apps running on the cloud-based PrintOS platform offer advanced capabilities that simplify and automate the print operations. In addition, by connecting their brands directly to PrintOS, PSPs can efficiently produce large jobs’ volume and be part of a global print network.
The HP flexible packaging ecosystem has grown to include end-to-end solutions, including HP Indigo Pack Ready Lamination for immediate time-to-market with high-performance laminates. The system consists of the Pack Ready Laminator, supplied by Karlville, and Pack Ready Film. In addition, eBeam is offering a solution for surface print protection.