It reported more than €32m overall operating profit in the 2015 financial year, with specialty films almost 70% of total sales volume, reaching 72% in the first quarter of 2016.
HybraPack hybrid material
Dr. Walter Bickel, CEO, Treofan, told BakeryandSnacks, Treofan Americas was responsible for the biggest individual increase, growing its specialties share by more than 12 percentage points.
Its portfolio includes specialized multilayer OPP (oriented polypropylene) films including white opaque films, barrier metallized films, wide seal materials and coated films like the ultra-high barrier EVOH (Ethylene vinyl alcohol copolymer) coatings, which it supplies to the supplier to the confectionery, snack and biscuit markets.
It also produces 70µm solid films and films with improved optics and print speed for reel fed wrap-around labels for bottles, mainly for bottled water.
“We are seeing a shift towards specialty films and we want to position the company as a supplier of film surface technologies for barriers with high performance and usability,” he said.
“We don’t want to make standard films but customized films for our customers for example, Trefoan BFC is a transparent OPP film, with one side EVOH coated, and one side coated with an untreated sealant copolymer. This film is developed to be used in lamination where a high gas barrier is required or in MAP (Modified Atmosphere Packaging) applications.
“And HybraPack hybrid material, which on the outside looks and feels like paper, and is just as printable, while on the inside, it has all the functionalities of BOPP film such as a barrier effect against steam and oxygen.
“Depending on the choice of paper and film, the material allows brand owners to design individual packaging models – from firm to flexible, permeable to ultra-tight, conventional stand-up pouch to packs combining rigid and flexible components.
“Treofan also recently won a European Plastics Innovation Award for Best Lightweight Innovation, for its “PHD 1.9” ultra-thin capacitor film co-developed with Borealis.”
Bickel added the company launched a ‘tech powerhouse’ this year, an organizational department to streamline all its activities to deliver best service and innovation.
“We have a lot of functions split across the company and we want to bring these all together to increase profitability and service quality to our customers,” he said.
The tech powerhouse is headed by Dr. Marco Holst and Dr. Yvonne Düpre, and consists of two areas: “Service & Solutions” and “Know-How & Competences”.
Service & Solutions includes technical service, where requirements are defined in collaboration with the customer, and business development and product management, which handles coordination with production.
Know-How & Competences includes technology, where material properties are defined, and quality management.
Further organizational initiatives include streamlining the European management structure and opening a new coater facility in Battipaglia, Italy, which will begin production in 2017.
European management structure
The European management structure will be based on a model used in the Americas and combines responsibility for its European plants into a single corporate function under Luigi Martinese, COO Europe; in charge of the German plant in Neunkirchen and the Italian plants in Battipaglia and Terni.
The newly created European Board includes business unit managers Carolyn Wagner (Packaging and Labels), Nico Schoeman (Tobacco Packaging and Technical Films) and Dr. Franz Josef Kruger (Treopore Separators), plus a supply chain manager to be appointed soon.
Bickel took over as CEO, Treofan, from Peter Vanacker in March last year. He said the biggest game changer in the industry will be manufacturers having to think more about product innovation and how to define that on a broader scale.
“We need to broaden the innovation process, look at how manufacturers are packaging their products and with what material and offer a new level of support to the customer. That’s where our idea for a ‘tech powerhouse’ came in, the food and beverage market is growing and we need to be in close collaboration at every stage of the development.”