SUWANNE, GA—As Rossini North America celebrated its 20th anniversary, it took the wraps off an 18,000 sq. ft. expansion that brought the size of its Suwanne (Atlanta area), GA headquarters to 60,000 sq. ft. with a current staff of 60.
The milestone came with increased order volumes, establishment of US-based manufacturing capabilities, new product introductions and a commitment to further state-of-the-art innovation, with short-term debut plans. A lot was happening throughout 2018.
Marco Caccia, the new general manager who has been in charge of Rossini North America since late August, unveiled that news in an exclusive interview with FLEXO Magazine, staged right on the INFOFLEX 2019 floor. He proudly reported that North American operations now include sales, service support and manufacturing under a single roof.
He credited several factors as driving the expansion, most notably the desire to identify space to introduce four new computer numerical control (CNC) machines to the operation. That move established a vastly improved North American manufacturing site and also facilitated development of a quality control lab on premises.
Caccia spoke to the significance of the move. “Rossini is a growing company. We wanted to introduce four new CNC machines to our operation for improved grinding and finishing of sleeves. We can now perform a multitude of operations—lathing, grinding and notching—without removing the sleeve from the machine. Being able to manufacture a finished sleeve in a single setup is not common, but in our new plant it is possible because our CNC machines employ multiple tool heads.”
Since construction and installation were completed, Caccia said, “Orders on hand for what can be manufactured in the US are running 20 percent higher. We’re increasing production capacity. It now stands at $15-$16 million in the US and $60 million annually worldwide. Our customer base is in the thousands and consists of mostly flexible packaging converters.”
Caccia stressed that product turned out in his plant is built utilizing the best available technology. “Price is not what drives business, quality does. Customers look for well-engineered and well-designed plate mounting sleeves. They demand bridges made from the highest quality carbon fiber construction, and they utilize Speedwell sleeves and rollers for their coating and lamination applications. They want consistent, long lasting, quality products that are soundly tested and come with essential after-sales support.”
In Suwanee, all sleeves produced pass through stringent quality control tests that evaluate fit, diameter tolerance, surface roughness and any specific customer requirements. Caccia stated, “Print quality hinges on consistency in diameter and concentricity, and the ability to absorb vibration in plate sleeve and bridge alike.” He noted that the company’s recently introduced FastBridge contains a highly specialized carbon fiber pattern that is designed for maximum rigidity.
Looking to the future, Caccia announced that “next generation sleeves” are now in development. They will be 20 percent to 30 percent lighter than today’s products, utilizing improved materials that will provide high performance and industry required stability per Rossini’s known quality standards. He says roll-out is not far away. He also noted that Rossini already has the industry’s lightest sleeve technology—a honeycomb design, resulting in 50 percent to 60 percent lighter weight than traditional sleeves and it facilitates 25 percent faster print speeds due to its vibration-dampening characteristics.