Major Products: Flexo, gravure, UV/EB inks, graphic arts coatings, metallic inks, screen Inks, security inks and specialty inks.
Key Personnel: George Sickinger, chairman, CEO and president; Rick Gray, VP finance/CFO; John Edelbrock, VP of operations; Paul Fulton, VP of strategic accounts; Joe Schlinkert, director of technology; Hixon Boyd, VP, field operations, U.S. Southern Region; Dave Barker, VP, field operations, Northern Region/West Coast; Jim Distler, VP, specialty products.
Number of Employees: 127.
Operating Facilities: Manufacturing plant in Fairfield, OH, and 16 blending sites.
Comments: The packaging ink market has been a strong area for ink manufacturers, and Color Resolutions International (CRI), a water-based and UV packaging ink specialist, enjoyed double-digit sales growth in 2011.
“We were blessed to have a very good year in 2011,” said George Sickinger, CRI’s president and CEO.
“Our sales and income increase were in the double digits. The packaging market has been robust, and we have benefited from the demand from CPC’s for better printing and more creative designs and the printers’ need to improve press productivity and quality. The demand for change has always spelled opportunity for us.”
While Color Resolutions originally focused its efforts on the corrugated marketplace, the company has successfully branched out into the label and flexible packaging segments, among others, and has also extended its geographic reach into Mexico and Latin America.
“Shrink sleeves and labels are growing market niches, along with flexible packaging as a whole,” Mr. Sickinger noted. “Paper packaging has a much lower growth rate, but there are growth opportunities within it. Mexico and Latin America represent very good growth opportunities.”
Mr. Sickinger noted that he has seen some stabilization in raw materials.
“Raw material costs have stabilized partially because we are doing everything possible not to accept increases, and I believe global demand has abated somewhat,” he said. “Our customers have been pushing back on price increases all through the recession, so getting the much needed prices increases largely did not happen. TiO2 has been a special problem, but we have been getting what we need by working closely with the supply chain and customers alike.”
CRI continues to emphasize investments in its operations and its personnel.
“We have continued to make smaller capital improvements to our central plant in Ohio to further automate material handling and quality control,” Mr. Sickinger noted. “We have upgraded most of our in-plants operations to provide more graphic services. Our R&D activity has been expanded to provide formulation for the new equipment coming on line at our customers’ plants. We continue to recruit and train technical service staff to service our growing business.”
Mr. Sickinger spoke of the importance of providing excellent technical service to customers.
“I don’t believe the dollars spent on packaging has increased much,” Mr. Sickinger said. “However, the demand for color and improved color application has. Ink continues to be unique in that a press’s impression of an ink represents a diagnostic tool from which to make improvements to the whole printing process. This ability is what makes the qualified ink technician so vital to our customers.”
As a result, Color Resolutions has made its mark by providing excellent quality and service to its core markets, and Mr. Sickinger believes these strengths will continue to key CRI’s growth.
“I expect 2012 and beyond to be good, with further growth for CRI in the areas that we have differentiated ourselves from our competition,” Mr. Sickinger concluded.