VB Sridharan, managing partner, RS Graphics. Photo PSA

Chennai-based RS Graphics is a 5-decade-old company catering to high- quality printing requirements for customers located across geographies. The company specializes in the manufacture of cartons, labels and tags. We at Packaging South Asia met VB Sridharan, managing partner, RS Graphics at his unit to talk more about the company and its recent investments in machinery. “We have been in business for over 50 years now. Our strength is our singular focus on our customer and their requirements. We are still the sought-after vendor even for our first customer, a relation that goes back to the formative years of our company. Our belief in constant upgradation of infrastructure and technology not only helps us stay ahead of competition but also offer the latest innovation to our customers,” says Sridharan.

The company’s packaging unit in Chennai is spread across three floors covering 90,000 square feet of total area. The top floor is dedicated to garment manufacturing, the 2nd floor to tissues and the ground floor entirely for packaging. We took a tour of the unit to see the machinery in action and to have a first-hand look at the kind of packaging that the company does.

RS Graphics has the complete prepress, press, finishing and converting divisions in-house. In the prepress division, the company has a Kodak Trendsetter CtP Developer, which was bought recently, and a Creo Trendsetter 800 II Quantum. In mid-2018, the company further invested in three of Esko’s prepress software modules — ArtiosCAD 3D, Deskpack Advanced and Plato — and in the Esko Kongsberg X Starter digital samplemaker. In its press section, RS Graphics operates with a 5-color Heidelberg Speedmaster, a 6-color Mitsubishi with coater, and a 7-color Mitsubishi press with UV plus coater. The finishing unit is complete with automatic lamination machine, sheeters, stripping and blanking machines as well as UV coaters. A recent investment was a Chinese micro-embossing machine — Xinxin Yw-102E — which was bought around 6 months back. Sridharan says that apart from ITC, RS Graphics is the only packaging company in Chennai to have this machine. The converting segment has a brand new Bobst die-cutter and case-maker, an Asahi crash lock bottom machine, folder-gluers, a manual die-cutting machine and an e-flute pasting machine.

“We have a stronghold in packaging, pharma, cosmetics, industrial items and garments, gift boxes, tags and labels segments. 50% of our business is into exports and the rest in domestic supply. We also make our own dies. So, basically, everything is done in-house, except for procuring paper and board. Our mission is to provide exceptional service and for that we pay individual attention to each and every customer and their requirements. We pride ourselves in adding value to our customer’s business,” shares Sridharan.

At RS Graphics, Sridharan follows the strict rule of timely execution of deliverables and offering superior quality levels of products. The company is ISO 9001:2008 certified and runs on MIS ERP system with complete operations from estimation to order processing to inventory and financials, providing a transparent system. “We have strong quality management systems to monitor and ensure quality parameters throughout the production process. We thrive to be recognized for our outstanding service,” says Sridharan.

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The multi-channel B2B in print and digital 17-year-old platform matches the industry’s growth trajectory. The Indian, South Asian, Southeast Asian, and Middle East packaging industries are looking beyond the resilience of the past three years. They are resuming capacity expansion and diversification, with high technology and automation in new plants and projects.

As we present our 2024 publishing plan, India’s real GDP growth for the financial year ending 31 March 2024 will exceed 6%. The packaging industry growth will match the GDP growth in volume terms and surpass it by at least 3% in terms of nominal growth allowing for price inflation in energy, raw materials, consumables, and capital equipment.

The capacity for flexible film manufacturing in India increased by 45% over the past four years. With orders in place, we expect another 20% capacity addition in 2024 and 2025. Capacities in monocartons, corrugation, aseptic liquid packaging, and labels are growing similarly. As the consumption story returns over the next six months, we expect demand to return and exceed the growth trajectory of previous years. The numbers are positive for most of the economies in the region – and as shown by our analytics, our platform increasingly reaches and influences these.

For responsible and sustainable packaging, with its attendant regulations and compliances, there is significant headroom to grow in India and the region. Our coverage includes the entire packaging supply chain – from concept to shelf and to waste collection, sorting, and recycling.

We target brand owners, product managers, raw material suppliers, packaging designers and converters, and recyclers. This is a large and complex canvas – the only thing that can work is your agile thinking and innovation together with our continuous learning and persistence.

The coming year looks to be an up year in this region, and this is the right time to plan your participation and marketing communication – in our rich and highly targeted business platform with human resources on the ground. Share your thoughts and plans to inspire and mobilize our editorial and advertising teams!

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