SAUERESSIG Packaging – an international success story

Packaging, Presse

70 years ago, three young founders from Vreden in the western part of Münsterland took the courageous step of becoming self-employed. At the time, no one would have guessed that this decision would pave the way for Saueressig to become one of the largest gravure printing tool suppliers in the world.

Since its founding in 1953, the name Saueressig has stood for outstanding quality, a customer-oriented approach and impressive technical know-how. Always on the cutting edge, Saueressig promotes and develops technical innovations and cultivates a benevolent corporate culture. These aspects are just some of the factors that make Saueressig the leading point of contact for gravure and embossing cylinders, even after decades.

In 2008, US-based Matthews International entered the gravure cylinder business with the acquisition of Saueressig, and expanded its international presence in 2011 with the acquisition of Kroma in Turkey. Three years later, the integration of SGK, a global leader in brand solutions, led to the merger of all brand solutions and pre-press businesses under the SGK name. In 2015, the Saueressig brand was acquired under SGK for all gravure-related businesses.

The packaging and printing industry is in a constant state of change. Due to ever new rules and regulations, it is important to have a competent partner at your side who prepares your packaging according to guidelines. Bünyamin Özyan, Vice President Saueressig Packaging Group, works together with his large team and the two General Managers Roman Gevers (responsible for the Saueressig Packaging East Cluster) and Frank Hüning (responsible for the Saueressig Packaging West Cluster) to provide the packaging industry with high-quality and clever gravure solutions in the future.

Today, Saueressig offers products and services for many different industries and operates at various international locations. Saueressig Packaging’s strength is its highly standardised production network, which is spread across Germany, Poland, Turkey and Indonesia. The individual locations are considered as a common capacity for digital processes such as KS (coordination service) and repro, thus enabling a high degree of interchangeability in products and employee capacities. Especially in Germany and Poland, this common capacity also extends to operational processes such as TD (technical documentation) and embossing processes.

Restructuring at Saueressig Packaging in Poland in recent months has set the company on a promising new direction. Roman Gewers, who has been Managing Director since December, brings his extensive experience and leadership skills to the management of the business unit. Also of great importance is the takeover of the Sales division by Adam Jankowiak, who is expected to further advance the company in this important area with his expertise and commitment. The start of the “Sprint” reorganisation project in January quickly showed positive effects. The optimisation of corporate structures and work processes enables Saueressig Packaging in Poland to operate more efficiently and competitively. This was further reinforced by the OrgDesign workshop in May, which defined clear responsibilities and improved working methods. One of the groundbreaking innovations was the creation of a “Centre of Excellence” for the “Tobacco” and “Flexible Packaging” divisions in Poland. By centralising all repro work locally, not only is greater efficiency achieved, but quality and standardisation in these key areas are also increased. The subsequent distribution of the finished data to the individual sites ensures that the production process runs smoothly. With these significant changes, Saueressig Packaging is strengthening its position as a leading company in the packaging industry in Poland. And the Saueressig sites in Izmir and Istanbul in Turkey, where printing cylinders are manufactured and customer-oriented services are offered, also clearly set Saueressig apart from its competitors.

Through a series of strategic acquisitions, Saueressig is continuously expanding its extensive gravure portfolio and establishing itself as a major player on the international packaging printing stage. Last year, another milestone towards fully automated production was reached with the acquisition of the Münsterland gravure printing manufacturer Ahler Gravuren GmbH (AKG). The integration of Europe’s largest, fully automated Autocon line for cylinder production and the combined know-how of AKG’s talented staff gives gravure an impressive clout.

The acquisition of the French-Turkish design agency Paristanbul by the partner SKG and Saueressig Turkey also helps to further expand the portfolio and design competencies in gravure printing. Paristanbul specialises in brand business, smart sourcing and repro and is currently being integrated into the comprehensive group structures.

Through these targeted acquisitions, Saueressig is strengthening its position as a leading supplier in the packaging printing industry and setting new standards by tapping into cutting-edge technologies and diverse competencies. The expanded expertise will enable Saueressig to continue offering its customers tailor-made solutions in the future and to meet the global challenges of gravure printing with bundled power and a spirit of innovation.

With a wide-ranging product portfolio, Saueressig Packaging goes far beyond classic gravure and embossing cylinders, demonstrating its innovative strength and commitment to advancing the packaging printing industry through advanced technologies and solutions. The close cooperation between the in-house research and development department, the internal design centre and production enables Saueressig to position itself as a full-range supplier. From the creation of the design by the competent repro team to the professional production of the cylinder according to individual specifications – Saueressig accompanies the entire process. There are no limits to individual requirements, wishes and special features.

One of the products in the extensive portfolio is the cLynx.cylinder. During development, the focus was on the problem that manufactured printing cylinders often have defects that can lead to customer complaints. To address this problem, Saueressig has developed its own software solution that scans the entire cylinder and uses AI and CV methods to compare the scan results obtained with the imaging data. This makes it possible to detect missing elements, scratches or defects of various kinds on the surface at an early stage. The implementation of the technology has led to drastically reduced complaint rates. In addition, production time can be shortened by at least one day during the production of printing formes, as time-consuming processes such as cylinder proof printing or surface inspection in chrome are no longer required. Special modules such as print-free moire recognition or print simulation round off the scope of cLynx.cylinder. Currently, the new architecture of the cLynx.cylinder software is about to be released, and possibilities are already being examined as to how this type of surface inspection can also be used in other areas.

Another product in the portfolio is cLynx.lite, which works similarly to cLynx.cylinder. However, here a scan of the cylinder takes place in just a few seconds by taking an image in cylinder width with only one cylinder rotation. The cLynx.lite machine is more compact and less expensive than the cLynx variant with an axially moving camera. Compared to cLynx.cylinder, cLynx.lite concentrates on the pure detection of superficial defects in chrome or copper. A new feature is the ability to distinguish whether defects are recessed or raised. cLynx.lite is likely to be of particular interest to gravure printers, in addition to traditional mould manufacturers. The prototype of this unique machine will already be ready for drupa24.

Another fascinating project in Saueressig’s portfolio is “W2G: Web2Gravure”. Here, the problem was identified that for cylinder production, a large number of production parameters have to be compiled from various sources and entered into target systems, which involves a lot of time and effort. As a solution, Saueressig developed a simple, browser-based software solution that considerably speeds up the order creation process. The time saving amounts from about 2 hours per order to only a few minutes. The project is in the test phases for modules 1+2 and 3, and consideration is already being given to how this system can also be used in other areas.

Saueressig is also working on “Matches”, an AI-supported system that is used in two different modules. The “Similarity Search” module focuses on the challenge of quickly finding orders with similar image content. This can be done either by means of a reference image or by entering text. This makes it much easier to find relevant content. In the “Commonality Search” module, the aim is to use already produced printing cylinders or image data from existing jobs when developing new products in order to reduce costs. Both modules have successfully completed the development phase and are about to be launched.

The international strength, the global production network and the innovative products position the Saueressig Group optimally to meet the requirements of the market and to offer innovative solutions for customers worldwide. The course has been set to successfully meet the challenges of the market in the future and to continue to offer innovative solutions for customers.