While viewpoints about the benefits of renewable energy are ranging in the community, one
Australian label printer is grabbing the latest technology, powering their Greenfi eld site with
solar, producing labels and saving a bucket of money. Label Plus is situated at Yatala between
Brisbane and the Gold Coast, and is the latest and most impressive site owned by well known
label identity, Terry Rowney.
General Manager – Daniela Nickel (centre) with National Sales
Manager James Atkins (right) and Production Manager Chris Lee.
Built from the ground up Label Plus is a credit to the man himself and his team.
“Labels Plus” magazine asked Terry how the dream became reality?
“The rationale was to set up and run the best possible label company,” explained Terry.
“In the future, I think Queensland will play a bigger role in the industry, and my view was if we
are going to do something we should do it properly. I wanted to start from square one.
“We found a plot of land, a good builder, and we built a lovely building with our input from day one. Often, a label business is
started in a garage; then goes to an available commercial building where you try to make the business work. With Yatala,
we built the building around the machinery we knew we would need.
“I also wanted the Yatala staff to be proud of where they worked and to show customers how professional we were.
Pivotal to that was having control over our environment.” According to Label Plus General Manager, Daniela Nickel,
the roof-top panels generate the maximum power a single company can install to qualify for the Renewable Energy Rebate.
“We have 312 panels occupying an area of 640 sq metres,” said Daniela. “Not only that, we use the power generated
during working days ourselves, we export unused power on non-working days back into the grid.
The project hasn’t been without its difficulties but Terry was prepared to invest in this solar system in order to reduce our energy costs and to make a contribution to reducing the carbon footprint.” While construction started in 2017, it wasn’t until mid-March 2018 that the new complex was ready to produce labels.
James Atkins, Label Plus National Sales Manager, said there was a growing number of customers who were stipulating an
increased requirement for carbon reduction by suppliers. Both, Daniela and James, had worked for Terry at other sites
for a number of years before they were asked to head-up to Label Plus in Queensland, and to develop the business and it’s
required facilities further in the right direction. The original machinery moved to the new premises was
a Nilpeter, a Mark Andy and an HP 4600, but James and Production Manager Chris Lee, knew with the changing profile
of the work they were receiving, that an additional digital press was also needed.
“Initial investments in digital printing machines were made when Terry placed an order with Currie Group after PacPrint in
2013 for a number of digital presses to be installed in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. So it was a joint package for Terry’s
printing companies in three states and the beginning of the group’s digital presence in the market. Our first HP Indigo
installed in 2014 had gone from strength to strength, so we knew the benefits of it.
“We all saw it as the future, and to meet the capacity required in the new factory, HP Indigo was the logical choice.
Terry and I went to Brussels in 2015 to review what was available in the market with other digital options, and we both
came away believing the HP Indigo 6800 at that time was our choice to move forward. The fact that all of our pre-press is
already set-up for HP was also a factor.”
James said that Chris Lee had been an operator before he became Operations Manager, knew the machine inside-out, and
their opinion is that the level of quality the HP digital produces has not as yet been surpassed.
Daniela added that when they made the decision to buy another HP Indigo, the current press being sold was the HP
Indigo 6800. “As discussions progressed, information became available on the upgrade to Silver ink on the 6900. This development
was unexpected, but we believed having the latest technology was the best outcome for us. Obviously, the Silver
is a real plus, because one of downsides of digital has been that it cannot give you the metallic effect you can get with
“And that was another big plus for buying the HP,” said James. “There are other digital machines out there, but none of
them have the level of support in Australia like Currie has. That support structure was a big selling point for HP in our judgement.”
“What the 6900 enables us to achieve, added Chris, is the ability to convert jobs that are longer run. “With our previous
machine portfolio we had limitations of choice for longer runs.
The HP 4600 with a smaller frame size is more geared to low and medium quantities, hence our options were only flexo or
letterpress for the long runs. The HP 6900 with it’s larger frame size has substantially increased our speed and offers us
better print options based on client requirements.”
Mark Daws Director Sales – Labels & Packaging ANZ for Currie Group, said their company had had a long and successful
association with Terry Rowney, and the companies he owned. “Terry was one of the early adopters of HP Indigo in Sydney, and
I have always admired the way he embraces new technology. As soon as we told him of the new features that came with
the HP Indigo 6900, his management staff realised this unit would really enhance the type of work they were producing
and in the process, transfer more jobs that had previously been produced by a conventional flexo process.
“The new plant in QLD is very impressive, and the HP Indigo 6900 is once again satisfying the demands of their
customers. In addition, they are able to exchange work with their Melbourne site via HP’s Print OS platform which is a
Cloud-based platform, allowing them to share colour profiles and exchange print files, whilst maintaining consistency in
colour management. In turn, this will prevent production concerns as their HP Indigo presses can be utilised seamlessly
between the two plants.”
James concluded by saying: “Having the latest digital printing technology, excellent conventional printing presses
and a brand-new factory means the sales team can go out with confidence. We can be more competitive than we would
otherwise have been.”