We had a wonderful event last Thursday where we celebrated our 65th birthday and demonstrated some of the new products and services we offer. I thought I would run down what many people missed who were not in attendance.
Unboxing the Bay started with a full tour of our Digital Bay showcasing our many analog and digital printers that bring YOUR projects to life! The first station was an introduction to our own Creative Services Solutions which exists to complete the creative process from concept to production. Beyond our standard design services, we now offer a comprehensive creative and design process from idea to completion, and an agency-style process with a very deep understanding of the retail integration and production process thereafter. All of this happens under one roof which allows for fluid design and communication – something that is not always possible when using a traditional agency.
Additionally, our Trendspotters help Creative Services Solutions drive a multidisciplinary team made up of conceptual and structural designers that regularly meet up to do retail visits and research buying behaviors and retail trends so they can assist current and future trends in display graphics, packaging, and signage. The team dives deep into trends to accomplish bigger wins for our clients (i.e., faster sell-through, increased brand awareness, and solution-based engineering). Another component of this process is our new eye-tracking software that puts the human in front of packaging, signage, and displays to validate with data to understand what graphics work and where they should be placed for the best lift in sales. The demonstration of this eye-tracking software seemed to be one of the most mystifying areas of the tour.
Another segment was the demonstration of our ISTA (International Safe Transit Association) testing tools. This is our insurance policy that we employ to validate if our genius packaging and displays will withstand the riggers of logistics. We have employed these testing procedures for over 50 years is a cornerstone of packaging performance. ISTA testing can be used for reducing the costs of over-packing resulting in lower costs and a more sustainable packaging outcome.
As we moved through the digital facility guests were captivated by the many multi-pass digital printers and robotic cutters used for small production runs of one to around 1000 pieces either ordered through our traditional Customer Service process or our online solution DIYPACK. This is our solution for smaller clients building their own packaging using our web-based tools. This allows anyone to use their own artwork and high-res graphics to build a custom box. We also offer a very easy tool that uses prebuilt selections of templated graphics for the novice to construct his or her own custom box. The site now offers photo tiles made of sustainable paper in hundreds of sizes. DIYPACK offers the ease of convenience online to build specialty packaging and now photo tiles any time anywhere.
As guests moved on, they were greeted by our OTTO bot- an automatous robot used to transport tools or raw materials to anywhere we program it to go. We plan to employ them to help everywhere we see a solution. The next stop was our two single-pass highspeed digital printers, Thunder and Lightning. One, the Barberan is built to print very large format styrene, plasticorr, foamcorr and of course corrugated sheets printed UV, 6 colors at very high speeds. The other C500 digital press is used to print very high-resolution retail packaging and the like. This press is 100% water-based and proves to be another addition to our sustainable arsenal. Digital printing lends itself towards no tooling, quick make-ready time, versioning, total flexibility super reduction in inventory carrying costs, and tremendous speed to market. Both of these presses add to further the sustainable solution.
The tour included an introduction to our packout centers that include some of the best-in-class solutions for multivendor, direct import, and very disciplined serialized manipulations utilizing some of our own developed tools and industry software. Guests then were treated to two of our newest services: BC 360 and BC Logistics. BC 360 is a service to create, read and chase data in the retail environment. It is also a service that helps brands sell into the likes of the Walmarts of the world. The ultimate goal is to manage and grow the ring at the register by driving more products to it. BC Logistics is our freight brokerage that helped many of our brands and retailers pull products out of the ports and deliver finished displays to distribution centers and even direct to stores. These two services help brands and retailers document and drive that ring at the register.
After this stop folks got a look at our super high-speed quick set up box maker which sets up in 2 minutes and runs at 24,000 boxes an hour. There is even a digital print head on this machine to eliminate the need for a printing plate when just an ident or UPC code is needed to be printed on that box, thus driving even more sustainability into the offering.
Our guests moved on to view our newest flexo rotary diecutter which is 135 inches and prints 3 colors on the outside and 2 colors on the inside. This eliminates the need for multi-pass operations to print both inside and outside the box. Clients are looking for that unboxing experience with the inside print. The massive size at 135 inches helps us to run large displays in one piece rather than multiple pieces, thus saving on extra setups, inventory costs, and assembly costs in our fulfillment centers. After this stop, our guests visited our Obeya room where they learned about ENCORR our sheet feeder that supplies us with our super high-quality corrugated sheets. This is a 132-inch corrugator that is located 1000 feet from the New Indy paper mill which is a 264-inch paper mill. Because of the size of the corrugator, it trims the paper mill, resulting in no wasted trim rolls. The interconnection between these two operations presents the most sustainable solution on the west coast. New Indy is a 100% recycled paper mill and due to its proximity to ENCORR, freight is nonexistent, and it supplies ENCORR with 100% of its off energy to power the corrugator. Plus, Bay Cities drops empty trailers after delivering products to clients and picks up full trailers of sheets to increase efficiency and drive more sustainable aspects into the equation.
The guests all made it back to the starting point where they settled under an expansive tent with a cool breeze and listened to our Trendspotters delivering a presentation of the most recent trends with color, design, and cutting-edge retail executions. Soon after drinks were served, and Einstein Brown began treating them with sweet Caribbean music as a plated dinner was served. Guests mingled in the warm summer evening while listening to Einstein’s amazing steel drum music. The mood was upbeat, the setting was truly spectacular, and the conversations were memorable. The guests were given a picture of themselves taken upon their entry to the facility that was printed one right after another digitally on the C500 as a reminder of them being a “Digital Hero.” What an unforgettable day learning about the future possibilities available now at the Bay and how we can help suppliers and retailers alike truly “win at retail”.
Oh, I almost forgot, Happy 65th Bay Cities, I can’t wait to see what’s next!
Greg Tucker, CEO, Bay Cities