Adhesives specialist boosts product offering with label printer upgrade

Bristol-based Ureka Global Ltd (formerly Alansons), provide adhesives, sealants and bonding solutions and services to manufacturing, construction and other businesses in the creation of components, structures, safe environments, and innovative products.

Bristol-based Ureka Global Ltd (formerly Alansons), provide adhesives, sealants and bonding solutions and services to manufacturing, construction and other businesses in the creation of components, structures, safe environments, and innovative products. This includes selling labels to industrial and chemical organisations for use on various equipment and products to provide branding and key information.

For the past five years, Ureka have printed labels in-house for orders of around a thousand or less, with anything higher outsourced from a lithographic printing company.

“Our game is adhesives and as much as we can we like to focus on offering our own labels”, says Alex Nunn, managing director at Ureka. “Whether we’re buying unlabelled products or decanting them from larger volumes, the labelling of our own brand is of course really important to us, and the capability to do our own in-house label printing and not be governed by manufacturer’s stipulations is a key added value for us. We’re also pushing contract packaging, so the ability to private label for customers is also a key USP, and when dealing with low numbers of labels it’s important that the quality of the label is just right.”

Ureka’s in-house label printer was providing them with a series of issues that they were keen to remedy. “The stock wasn’t the right paper, the ink was expensive and it wasn’t drying properly, but the biggest issue was the lack of support from the company we were dealing with”, continued Nunn.

Urkea met with label solutions specialist AM labels at the PPMA trade show, who showed them towards the Epson stand and its latest line-up of 8-inch label printers, the ColorWorks CW-6500. AM labels then brought a couple of Epson demo units down to Ureka’s office to better understand their label printing operation and how the new unit could support them.

Nunn Continued: “We needed an 8-inch colour label printer that provided good quality labels. It became clear when AM labels provided the Epson demo that we’d been mis-recommended our original unit when we first bought it. We tried different types of label stock on the Epson ColorWorks printer, including polypropylene labels – which we went for in the end – and the quality of printed label was significantly better than this label compared with the incumbent printer. Not to mention, the ink dried properly and didn’t come off in your hands.

“This all happened a week or two before the lockdown, which helped us meet our revenue targets as it meant we could develop and add labels in-house to the PPE (personal protective equipment) and hand sanitiser that, through sheer demand, we began selling over the period. Having the label printer ready in-house gave us the flexibility to develop labels for our own branded products as well provide short-run label requests for our customers.

“We’ve been really pleased with the Epson ColorWorks label printer so far. The ink cartridges are significantly larger than on the incumbent label printers, meaning the cost of the ink is significantly less, and it performs well with the BarTender label software we’re used to using, so the changeover to the new unit was nice and easy. It performs quickly and we’ve had no issues, and the label stock changing and the way it feeds into the head is very intuitive and hassle-free. The ColorWorks has been running pretty much full-time since we got it. Our only major issue is that we only have one printer and since we’re using it so much that we’re considering buying a second one.”