Monarch Graphics – ‘Crafting Smarter Labels’

Interview – Bhrigav Jain

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Monarch Graphics – ‘Crafting Smarter Labels’
Bhrigav Jain, techno-commercial director at Monarch Graphics

Monarch Graphics in Noida in Delhi NCR is a leading label manufacturer. An innovator in the industry, the company has been focused on using best business practices to manufacture labels that meet global standards for several years. The organization has been promoting the use of sustainable and environmentally friendly practices like the use of food-grade inks, APEO NPEO free adhesives, and FSC certified materials.

Monarch Graphics mainly uses flexo printing technologies to produce product labels and specializes in making security seals and anti-counterfeiting labels. Monarch’s customers comprise leading FMCG, cosmetic, nutraceuticals, automotive, electronic brands to whom it provides bespoke and specialty labeling solutions. Monarch Graphics’ motto is ‘Crafting Smarter Labels.’

We recently visited Monarch Graphics and met Bhrigav Jain, its techno-commercial director. Talking about label inputs and pressure-sensitive label stocks, Jain said that customers increasingly focus on sustainable solutions. “The brand owners are asking for FSC-certified materials to achieve their sustainability goals. The industry also seems to be looking to diversify its product portfolio between paper-based materials and film-based materials to reduce its carbon footprint.”

He also feels the brand owners need to also look into the finer subjects like inks being consumed in their labels, the possible reduction in a number of colors, and the use of REACH compliant raw materials by convertors.

When we asked him about the Covid-19 impact or what challenges Monarch Graphics faced during the pandemic, he admitted, “Last year was a bit challenging for us, but the kind of product portfolio we have and the kind of team that has been with us over the last ten years, helped us to be resilient in this challenging period. And, as for the sales, these have been good for sure.”

The menace of counterfeit products in the economy

An experienced supplier of various smart label solutions, Jain shared his thoughts on counterfeiting, which has become common in several segments of consumer industries. Today, leading brands are affected by this counterfeiting practice and don’t know how to protect their brand identity, and some don’t even want to talk about it for fear of encouraging the counterfeiters publicly. To protect their brands and emerge from this adverse dilution of their market, they prefer anti-counterfeiting labels.

However, Jain pointed out that anti-counterfeiting labels and measures are not only about having expensive materials, printing inks, and digital technologies – it is about combining all these into the right solution and giving the customers the right product at the right price.

“Nowadays, very few people have the right knowledge of the domain and rarely know how to go about launching an anti-counterfeiting solution. It can’t simply be a label, and they also need to examine their marketing strategies. We supply the right kind of products where customers won’t feel overcharged, and our focus is on sustainable, scalable, transparent solutions where the customers understand the ROI.”

A challenging time for the label industry

Jain was forthcoming with views on the Indian label industry’s future, “The label industry is right now in the midst of a very challenging time as multiple players have entered into this industry accompanied by the unforeseen inflation in raw material prices. And, several mid-level players will mainly have to face these hyper-competitive challenges because they have to maintain their exceptional quality.”

“Simultaneously they need to look into the investments in the latest technologies. Experienced label printers like ourselves would need to find a niche where we identify and solve our customers’ problems so that they appreciate our solutions and not look at our product only from the price point of view. Ideally, the organization should be well-prepared to grow, sustain, and survive against multiple challenges.”

 

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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– Naresh Khanna

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