Leeds-based Roberts Mart and Co, one of the UK’s leading independent manufacturers and suppliers of flexible packaging, has invested £3m in brand-new state-of-the-art machinery.
The investment comes in the wake of a tremendously successful 12 months with a booming order book and turnover set to reach a record-breaking £36 million by the end of the year.
The family-run company, which has a staff of 200, is now based in purpose-built headquarters at Aire Valley House, Thornes Farm Way in south Leeds after moving from its iconic premises at Bank Mills in 2004.
The latest investments are the new Allstein 10 colour HYDRO CI Flexographic Printing Press and The Comexi S1DT, a top of the range twin turret slitting machine. In addition, the company has invested heavily in a new Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, which goes live later this year and will keep pace with rapidly-increasing customer demands.
Roberts Mart’s managing director, William Roberts, said: “It has been a very busy year for the company. This significant investment in new equipment is possible because we have a healthy order book – with a good number of new orders coming through the pipeline as well. We are seeing growth across the board, particularly food, where we are seeing much more opportunity in snacks and confectionery.
“Normally you would spread capital expenditure out over a period of time but the amount of new business we are winning dictates that this time it has been made all at once. It has been an excellent last 12 months – and in the light of our investment, which will make our production process swifter, sharper and more efficient, the future looks very bright indeed.”
The new Allstein press combines innovative, bounce free, stable press design, with automated changeovers, which contributes to higher press speeds, greater stability and faster changeovers. It offers ease of operation, the highest quality execution, technical sophistication, and proven performance.
Meanwhile the new slitter has multiple automating solutions which include splicing table, automated blade setting, auto core alignment and automatic reel unloading. Thanks to its monitoring and control elements, it copes with jobs with handling difficulties without any problem.
Roberts Mart, which was founded by William Roberts in Leeds in 1852 and is run by the sixth generation of the Robert family, supplies a vast range of shrink wrap, laminated film and high-quality printed flexible packaging to clients in the food and drink, home textiles (including duvets) and paper products industries.
William began trading as a paper merchant in Lady Lane, Leeds, making handmade bags, before moving into commercial printing.
Co-directors William and Ben Roberts are following in the footsteps of their father and chairman John, who has been given an Outstanding Contribution award by the British Printing Industries Federation after over 50 years’ service with the company. He handed over the day-to-day management in 2009 to his two sons but remains active in the business.