Chris Ellison, managing director of OPM (Labels & Packaging) Group Ltd., has been elected president of FINAT, the European labelling association based in The Netherlands, replacing outgoing president Thomas Hagmaier, managing director, Hagmaier Etiketten. Ellison will be supported by newly-elected vice president Francesc Egea of IPE Innovaciones.
“Packaging and labelling production is one of the most sustainable industries of all, because it continually replenishes itself – always reflecting changing market needs and fashion trends in a youthful way. I know this is a great industry to work in—lively, challenging, and rewarding—and I’m keen to promote it as the attractive career proposition it is, but I’m also well aware that today we’re competing with many other seductive ‘techno’ options, so it’s a top agenda item for me to have FINAT promote the labels and printed packaging production sector as a clean, lean career choice today,” says Ellison.
Ellison will also be supporting development of the technology website FINAT has recently created, which brings members up-to-the-minute expert information on key areas.
“It’s important to do this, because the pace of technology change in print is getting faster and faster, and equipment model cycles shorter. Not only that, leading-edge equipment today demands huge investment – yet margins are tighter, customers want extended payment leadtimes, and we need to think about changing direction with what we produce from just a simple ‘label’ to including new offerings like shrink sleeves, in-mould
labels, and flexible packaging. That’s what brand owners want, and Industry 4.0 for sure means that we all have to become more competitive in our relations with our customers—to be able to keep, and grow, our business,” he says.
Ellison stressed on the need to become more competitive and customise internal business systems to achieve optimal efficiencies. “I believe FINAT can really help us change—how we
should be thinking, in terms of adding value, technology, recruiting young people. Supporting the label industry national associations, FINAT underlines the international nature of our industry now.”