Over the years Springfield Solutions has been at the forefront of many developments in the reprographics, brand management and printing worlds, but in 1993 we found ourselves helping to instigate change in a completely different industry.
In those days paint manufacturers stored tens or even hundreds of thousands of litho-printed, metal cans which they filled with every shade of paint imaginable, before being shipped off to retailers across the world.
This was a huge cost and one which a global paint manufacturer and reprographics customer of ours was keen to reduce.
Our experience told us that if the company would change from printing directly on to the metal cans to using labels, they would be able to cut their storage requirements dramatically. Instead of having to stockpile huge numbers of pre-printed, empty cans, they would be able to buy in blank metal cans as and when they needed them and apply the labels afterwards.
Realising the potential of this process, the client agreed and we invested in a Heidelberg printing machine in partnership with Day Print, a local print company. It led to a seven year contract with the company in question which remains a client of ours to this day.
The process was not without its challenges. It employed a wet glue to stick the labels in place which could cause the metal cans to rust, and as the paint was shipped globally, hot or cold temperatures also affected the finish. But it did mark a move away from storing huge volumes of metal cans and had consequences for the entire paint manufacturing industry.
And, as one thing led to another and better solutions came along such as reel fed, self-adhesive labels, Springfield Solutions was able to capitalise on those to offer a comprehensive service to our growing clientele of paint manufacturers.
Although we would never claim to be wholly responsible for streamlining the paint industry’s labelling processes we like to think we played a small part in driving efficiencies.
It also opened up a new world of possibilities for us in printing, including the world of digital printing, which laid the path for the company we are today.