On a warm, starlit evening in Los Angeles, Ultimate Flex and its parent corporation, Ultimate Paper Box, welcomed 300 guests to a one-of-a-kind indoor and outdoor open house to celebrate its newly triple-enlarged facility and see its broad swath of capabilities, including its environmentally friendly flexographic production. The Ultimate Flex open house also included the company’s vendor partners, including such sponsors as Windmoeller & Hoelscher, KBA North America, Bobst, Prisco, Anderson & Vreeland, RM Machinery and International Paper.
Founded in 2013, Ultimate Flex serves the flexible packaging market needs for the nationwide food and cosmetic industries and operates as a sister division to its parent Ultimate Paper Box, a manufacturer of folding cartons and litho labels established in 1995. The two firms employ 130 skilled craftsmen.
The evening began as guests took a red-carpet tour of Ultimate’s facilities and saw personalized demonstrations of its flexo and offset equipment. At the Windmoeller & Hoelscher 52-in. Miraflex AM 10-color flexo press demonstration, Ultimate was running live the production of 300 of its high-quality goodie bags, one presented to each guest. The bags were later filled with savory treats and placed inside black-and-silver foiled, personalized bags, designed and produced by Ultimate Paper Box.
Once the guests had seen Ultimate’s demos in action, along with machinery from several partners including Bobst die cutters, they were led outside to a lounge area by a large stage and gourmet food stations, where chefs custom-prepared fresh, authentic Indo-Chinese, Indian and Italian fare.
One of the event’s scene-stealers was the fashion show, in which models wearing high-fashion clothes made from Ultimate’s flexo film and packaging materials strutted across the runway. Later, guests could take an up-close look at the model’s clothing to see how Ultimate’s film and packaging were used to make their dresses, skirts and hats.
“The flexographic division is one of our fastest growing,” says Janak Patel, owner of Ultimate Paper Box and Ultimate Flex. “We’re experiencing 18 percent growth in this area. Currently, flexo makes up 30 percent of our business, with offset paperboard packaging the other 70 percent. We anticipate that quickly flexo and offset will comprise an equal 50/50 percent split of our business.” The food market, such as meat, candy, coffee and tea, and dairy/cheese, makes up 95 percent of Ultimate’s customer base, while the cosmetic market contributes the remaining 5 percent.
The firm offers a variety of solutions to its flexographic customers including roll stock; a wide variety of pouch styles such as K-style, doyen style gusset, plough style gusset pouches and flat barrier bags; lamination; custom slitting and rewinding; custom hand-made mockups; design and prepress; 10-color process printing; full-time web inspection and the latest pouch converting technology. It offers a wide array of substrates including 84AOH, ASBX, BON, Co-Ex, CPP, foil, HDPE, LDPE, LLDPE, metallized film (MET-PET), nylon, OPP, foil/poly, PET, polyester, polyethylene, polypropylene and PVDC.
Ultimate Flex is proud of its environmentally friendly green solution. The firm is unique in operating water-based printing and solventless lamination. Utilizing this water-based approach, Ultimate Flex does not have to burn off VOCs, saves natural gas, keeps the air clean and is able to recycle all of its waste.
One of the many clients on hand at the Ultimate Flex open house to celebrate was Sequoia Packaging. It has used Ultimate as a vendor for both its conventional offset paperboard packaging and its flexo packaging services for the last 10 years. “One of our clients is in the tea business,” says Greg B. Tomey, president and CEO of Sequoia. “We use Ultimate Flex to print large rolls of 6-in. wide film that is converted into individual tea bag pouches and then is placed in folding cartons manufactured by Ultimate Paper Box. We were honored to be invited to Ultimate’s open house. We’ve never seen anything like it. Our jaws just dropped. It was like a Las Vegas show themed for the packaging industry.”
About the Author: Debora Toth is a freelance writer and public relations specialist. Reach her at [email protected].