ROSEMONT, IL—The organizer of Labelexpo Americas 2018 is pleased to report that the 16th edition of the biennial trade show was the largest in its history. A total of 487 exhibitors were spread across the biggest floorspace yet, at 203,642 square feet, with almost 30 percent of exhibitors new to this year’s show.
During the course of the three-day show, which took place Sept. 25 to 27 at Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, IL, an increase in attendees to 16,413 from 86 countries passed through its doors. The Latin America region was especially strongly represented, with a 95 percent increase on its 2016 show attendee total. Day three, traditionally a quieter day, saw over 11 percent more visitors than on the same day in 2016. By the end of day three, the show organizer reported an 83 percent rebook rate for its 2020 event.
Labelexpo Americas 2018 saw key press unveilings, including: the Mark Andy P9E, P7E, and P5E; Xeikon’s entry-level label printing and converting option, Label Discovery; Epson’s UV LED cured L-6534 digital press; Grafisk Maskinfabrik’s DC330Mini converting machine; and AB Graphic’s new ILC760 inline coating machine.
Among the many innovations launched at the show were: Avery Dennison’s heat sealable reclosure technology; Flint Group’s portfolio of food compliant inks for short-run flexible packaging including the web-based Vivi Colour Solutions; Phoseon Technology’s FireJet FJ605, a self-contained and air-cooled UV LED curing lamp for flexographic applications; Kodak’s Flexcel NX Ultra Solution, a solvent-free, VOC-free, water-based system; and GEW’s E4C UV curing system, engineered to offer converters access to higher power in a compact footprint.
Tasha Ventimiglia, Labelexpo Americas event director, said: “This year’s theme ‘Explore your Future’ really was evident, with more fascinating innovations than ever before providing even more choice for buyers, and a significant increase in exhibitors. It really shows that press manufacturers and the industry supply chain are upping their game. The Automation Arena and TLMI Ecovillage proved to be huge hits, with many packed out demonstrations on the show floor, and are further proof that the industry continues to evolve.”
Three popular Label Academy master classes were led by Mike Fairley and Andy Thomas-Emans, covering shrink sleeves; inks, coatings and varnishes; and MIS workflow automation. This was complemented by a packed two-day conference program, with highlights including a CEO converter panel discussion presided over by Craig Moreland, a panel discussion on package printing, plus sessions on workforce development, flexible packaging and creating products with stand-out presence.
Dr. Paulo Vieira, research and development director, Flint Group Narrow Web North America, who led the master class session on inks, coatings and varnishes, said: “The Label Academy master class program provided an unique open forum to discuss not only fundaments of label, inks and printing technologies, but also to discuss main challenges and market scenario, aligning knowledge to practice, making it a true instrumental tool for excellence in printing.”
Federico D’Annunzio, strategic product marketing director, Bobst, said: “The quality of attendance at the show was very high, it was not only a U.S. show, but we had very international visitors, so it met our objectives.”
Juan Da Silva, director of sales for the Latin American region, AVT, added: “Be ready, because this is not a local show, this is an international show, so there is going to be people that speak many different languages from many different regions with the same goal—which is to actually improve the quality and lower the cost.”