At Ariel Supply, efficient packaging is a key consideration for success.
Founded in 1993, Overland, MO-based Ariel Premium Supply is a top tier supplier to the promotional products industry. The company offering a huge selection of imprinted promotional products. As with most promotional products suppliers, efficient packaging is a key consideration for achieving success. Profit margins can be thin, and labor is expensive – especially when the product requires time-consuming hand packaging.
Ariel Supply was growing quickly and they recognized the need to take a comprehensive survey of their entire operation with the desire to improve efficiencies in every area. It became clear immediately that product packaging was causing a significant bottleneck. The company was using an older Sharp Max bagger running pre-opened bags on a roll. This packaging approach had a few serious drawbacks: the machine was growing old and undependable, bags on a roll required an extensive bag inventory for all the sizes required, the change-over time for bags of different sizes was considerable, and most importantly, the machine lacked versatility.
To support their steady growth, the principals at Ariel Premium Supply decided to take a fresh look at their packaging, and the obvious first step was to attend the quintessential professional packaging exposition: Pack Expo International in Chicago, IL. Pack Expo exhibitors included more than 2,500 leading suppliers of advanced packaging equipment, materials, containers, automation technologies and other supply chain solutions. The expo brings together suppliers of the latest packaging solutions for global companies, start-ups and everything in between. Attendees included corporate, general, plant and project managers; engineers; production supervisors; those involved in operations and quality control; purchasers; package designers, brand managers and marketers from what seems like every industries. The Ariel folks believed that somewhere in the 1.2 million square feet of exhibit space they could find their solution.
Less talking. More listening.
Just as they visited other packaging equipment manufacturers, the Ariel team arrived at the PAC Machinery booth ready to discover a solution. There, they were greeted by PAC Machinery’s National Sales Manager. All PAC sales managers have extensive experience in the packaging business. They think outside of the box, they think inside the box, they even think about the box itself – and even the bag. The team spent some time talking to Ms. Fiona Qu, the person leading the Ariel Team. As usual, the team members spent more time listening than talking. After a lively back-and-forth, they came up with an inspiration. Even though there were a number of PAC machines that could fill the bill, there was one solution that delivered all the flexibility Ariel desired, plus lots more. It was unanimous; the team recommended the Rollbag Magnum Vertical Automatic Bagger.
The Rollbag Magnum Vertical Automatic Bagger works with poly tubing as well as pre-opened bags on a roll, giving Ariel Premium Supply two bagging approaches that could be used interchangeably. The poly tubing approach allows he bag length to be changed at the push of a button, right-sizing the bag for every product. The machine was great for roll bags as well. Now they had a choice. This was the flexibility that Ariel sought, and, were unable to find elsewhere. Plus, poly tubing would provide Ariel significant material cost savings, and reduce material inventory costs by a wide margin.
Fiona Qu was very impressed by the flexibility, and even more so by the machine speed. The Magnum is able to package products at speeds up to 70 bags per minute using pre-opened bags on a roll, and up to 40 bags per minute using poly tubing. The Magnum offered other advantages as well. The Rollbag Magnum Vertical Automatic Bagger’s built-in interface simplifies integration of robotics or other automatic in-feed devices for in-line filling of various products. Ariel had a choice of a thermal transfer printer or a label applicator. The automatic bagger can be configured with a range of options (hole punch, wider seal bar, light curtain) to customize the automatic bagger to the specific packaging application required by Ariel.
After careful consideration, Ariel Premium Supply ordered two Rollbag Magnum Vertical Automatic Baggers. The machines were built to Ariel’s specifications, delivered and put into service immediately. So satisfied with the performance of the baggers, Ariel ordered two more Magnum baggers – then, two more, raising the total number installed at their facility to six. Then, as if out of the blue, the company ordered yet two more machines for a total of eight. Talk about a satisfied customer. Now, Ariel Premium supply has retooled their entire packaging operation with advanced Magnum Vertical Automatic Baggers. Once again, the experts at PAC provided the unique solutions that led the way to significant business growth.