Most companies may find it hard to be all things to all people, but Veritiv Corporation is not your average company.
Formed as a result of a 2014 merger between former business-to-business distribution rivals Unisource Worldwide, Inc. and the xpedx business of paper-making giant International Paper Company, the Atlanta, Ga.-headquartered Veritiv is a business colossus by any measure—employing approximately 8,900 people at 180 distribution centers across North America, generating approximately US$10 billion in annual sales.
Serving customers across every major industry—including CPG (consumer packaged goods) manufacturing, food processing, retail and fulfillment—the company’s business comprises five core complementary segments of print, publishing, facility management, logistics solution and, notably for our audience, packaging.
With the packaging segment accounting for nearly 30 per cent of the company’s total annual revenues, Veritiv is naturally keen to solidify the leadership credentials of its Unisource Canada subsidiary, headquartered in Mississauga, Ont.
The TUFflex brand of tapes and stretchwrap films marketed by Veritiv Corporation covers a highly diverse range of industrial, acrylic and water-activated carton-sealing tapes, and comprises more than 70 different varieties of stretchwrap films to cover all manual and fully-automated applications.
THE OPEN ROAD
As part of its ongoing marketing initiatives, the company is literally taking its show on the road this coming summer with The Complete Package Tour, which will be held at select Unisource Canada facilities in Montreal and Toronto (late May and early June), followed by a stopover in Vancouver in late September.
According to Jay Funderburk, director of segment strategy and marketing for the company’s Strategic Packaging Solutions business unit, Veritiv plans to use the occasion as an opportunity to demonstrate their end-of-line packaging machinery offering manufactured by the renowned Louisville, Ky.-headquartered machine-builder Lantech.
The tour, along with the launch of Veritiv’s private brand of TUFflex tapes and stretchwrap films, are two exiting events coming to Canada from Veritiv, as Funderburk told the Canadian Packaging magazine in a recent interview about the company’s Canadian business prospects.
Jay Funderburk is the director of segment strategy and marketing for the Strategic Packaging Solutions business of Veritiv Corporation.
What can our readers expect to see and learn from The Complete Package Tour?
Unisource Canada customers can expect to see how their current equipment performance matches up through benchmarking against industry standards. Our team will perform live demos—using the customers’ own products if they like—to measure productivity and efficiency possibilities with Lantech load containment equipment, including:
- The model Q-400XT model stretchwrapper with the EZ Weigh integrated scale, which is built into the frame of the stretchwrapper for easy verification of every load for quality and freight costs. By weighing each load, customers can ensure they are being charged correctly, thereby helping to lower transportation costs;
- The model C-300 case erector, featuring unique pick-up frame combined with precision infeed system to create ‘square’ cases without annoying and disruptive jams;
- The model CS-300 case-sealer, which is a safe, easy-to-use, fast set-up machine handling most commonly used case types and sizes at speeds of up to 30 boxes per minute.
What is it about Lantech equipment that warrants its role as a star of the show?
As the acknowledged inventor of stretchwrapping equipment, Lantech produces field-tested packaging machines to help customers reduce costs through less labor, material waste and product damage, while in- creasing efficiency through faster speeds.
At Veritiv, we integrate Lantech equipment with our products and services to develop innovative solutions that organize, protect and enhance value.
How long has the TUFflex brand name been around and what differentiates it from other branded tapes and films in the marketplace?
Our TUFflex brand is a comprehensive line of high-quality packaging essentials that delivers enduring performance, maximum efficiency and unmatched value, with our wide variety of tapes and films supporting most packaging applications.
While relatively new to the Canadian marketplace, the TUFflex brand has been around for more than 15 years in the U.S., and Veritiv looks forward to building on the brand recognition that has already been created there.
Who actually manufactures the TUFflex brand products for Veritiv?
Veritiv has partnered with some of the top manufacturers of tape and stretch film in North America to provide high-quality products that are equivalent to national brands. Our tape line includes carton sealing tape—including acrylic and hot-melt in hand and machine lengths—water activated tape, masking, filament and flatback tape. Customers can choose from a variety of types, thicknesses, and quality tiers to find a tape that will work best for their packaging application. For its part, the TUFflex stretch film line includes more than 70 different SKUs (stock-keeping units) with multiple performance levels—available in both hand and machine film versions.
Are there any other packaging products that may be added to this brand name in the future?
Our TUFflex products are part of what we call ‘Packaging Essentials,’ meaning that additional categories could include any products that are typically found in the majority of our customers’ locations.
Veritiv is continually evaluating product category additions, and we have plans to launch additional products in the near future.
Manufactured by Lantech, the model CS-1000 (above) and the CS-300 case-sealing systems (not pictured) can run the full gamut of TUFflex industrial tapes to suit specific application requirements.
TUFflex industrial tapes.
What kind of customers are you targeting with the TUFflex brand?
Typical end-users of Veritiv’s TUFflex products could be literally any of our customers—from a pharmaceutical or medical device manufacturer who needs to seal cartons and bundle them on a pallet, to a fulfillment house that uses water-activated tape to protect the packages they are shipping from pilferage.
Our main message is that TUFflex is a brand our customers can count on to get the job done. The TUFflex products will work with any type of equipment—automated or manual—as long as the product used meets the specifications needed for the application.
Lantech’s Q-400XT stretchwrappper is a fully-automated system equipped with an integrated weighscale to ensure optimal load accuracy.
What has been the customer response to the TUFflex product range so far?
We are excited that Veritiv customers have been very pleased with the TUFflex products, and that they are satisfied with the offering, performance and availability. Notably, they have also been asking when Veritiv will be adding additional product lines to the brand.
That said, what are the expectations for the growth of this brand in the Canadian market?
With our packaging sales professionals at Unisource Canada leading with the TUFflex brand when they are selling out in the marketplace, our outlook for the TUFflex line is very strong, with high expectations for exponential growth.
We also look forward to expanding the product lines over the next few years to cover all the essential packaging elements needed by our customer base.
When our customers team up with Veritiv and TUFflex, they team up with a Veritiv packaging expert who will work alongside them to seamlessly implement products and services that shape success for their business.