A business built on trust

For almost four decades, many of South Africa’s most popular and reputable wine and FMCG producers have turned to Rotolabel to create the proverbial billboard for their brand – the label.

Darling-based winery Groote Post has used Rotolabel for more than 20 years. Communication manager Peter Pentz says its relationship with Rotolabel is built on a solid foundation of trust and integrity.

Rotolabel was one of the first pressure-sensitive label printers in South Africa to switch from glue-application to self-adhesive label systems. Even though the prospect seemed risky 10 years ago, looking back it was a good decision, Peter says. “Rotolabel’s changeover times became as simple as switching rolls. Productivity became quicker and easier and Rotolabel offered superior end-use performance – even after exposure to our notorious coastal conditions. The labels looked better and lasted longer. This reaffirmed our confidence in Rotolabel.”

Using top-notch printing systems such as ROTOCONTROL and MPS flexographic machines – all supplied by ROTOCON – Rotolabel’s benefits for brand owners and wine producers have provided them with greater design and production flexibility and fewer limits on label shapes and sizes.

“When Rotolabel decided to take the leap and invest in the latest technology, it broadened its scope to deliver superior end products,” Peter says. “In our dealings with Rotolabel, we’ve noticed how the company has evolved to delivered unrivalled distinctiveness and true brand differentiation.” Even when requested label designs seemed overly ambitious or impossible to some, Rotolabel always managed to find a way to accommodate a brand such as Groote Post. “No idea or request was ever too big or small for them and they truly understand the importance of maintaining great working relationships with clients.”

Long-standing tradition

Wicus with one of Rotolabel’s ROTOCONTROL finishing machines, supplied by ROTOCON

Based in Thornton, Cape Town, Rotolabel has become renowned as a supplier of world-class self-adhesive labels in South Africa. It was businessman Simon Gilbert and his co-investors who instilled a culture of integrity when they founded the company in 1982, current managing executive Wicus Maritz says. Simon remained a primary shareholder until 2008 when the company was sold to the Bidvest Group.

For Wicus, it’s all about continuing that tradition. “Prior to the acquisition, the company had already done a lot of good work,” he says. “The previous owners empowered people and our philosophy is to continue being people-orientated as much as possible. We invested in training as well as applications and technology.”

Maintaining good relationships with clients based on trust has always been one of the company’s strongest value propositions, Rotolabel sales executive Grant Watson says. “For us, it was never about being flashy or flamboyant. But how do you sell relationships to new clients? Fortunately for us, we’ve managed to build a sound reputation of exceptional customer experiences in a competitive market, which has stood us in good stead.”

The Rotolabel plant offers well-designed facilities to support the flexographic and digital printing of consistently high-quality labels on a range of substrates with a variety of finishes. The technology is backed by a team of highly skilled, dedicated and motivated employees.

Rotolabel machine minder Bevan Greenmeyer with one of the MPS flexo presses, supplied by ROTOCON

Rotolabel’s staff members pride themselves on understanding all the intricacies of the company’s application equipment. “Even our sales executives are knowledgeable about all the production processes and technology at Rotolabel,” Grant says. “They’re not just selling labels to customers, but rather a complete holistic package that best suits the customer’s needs. Rotolabel is all about product identification and creating labels designed for printing. The quality of the label is very much dependent on the skill level of the machine operator. We not only have highly trained machine operators, we’re also best positioned to offer prudent advice and recommendations to customers in the label space.”

While Rotolabel’s latest-generation digital presses produce superior quality labels at affordable prices and are especially suitable for lower volumes, its real strength lies in flexo. “Digital presses might have levelled the playing field, but flexo presses still possess that artisanal quality for bespoke and detailed label printing,” Grant says. Complementing Rotolabel’s printing resources is state-of-the-art finishing that offers hot and cold foiling, silk screen, high-build, varnishing and laminating – everything you could wish for in designing a world-class label.

Service is everything

Grant says Rotolabel’s relationship with Groote Post has withstood the test of time. “We’re grateful for Groote Post’s long-standing support and faith in us,” he says. “They stuck with us when we decided to take the leap and switch to self-adhesive labels. It wasn’t always easy. Owner Nick Pentz deserves most of the credit. Although he’s resolute in his vision he also understands the importance of building a relationship based on the strong values of trust and integrity. Walking away when things get heated is not something we do. We pride ourselves on walking a path with our clients. It’s just something engrained in our DNA.”

Being a Cape wine estate with a long, rich history, Groote Post has always been particular about portraying its passion for heritage through its labels. Although regarded as traditional, Nick has never been shy about pushing the boundaries when it comes to label designs. “Nick and his team have always kept us on our toes, challenging us with unique and out-of-the-ordinary label print designs and requests,” Grant says. “But we’ve continuously managed to find solutions to accommodate their needs.”

“Our whole business is based on the premise of going the extra mile for our clients,” Wicus says. “It’s about being hands-on and committed. It’s treating the client’s brand like your own. That level of responsibility has given clients the necessary faith in our services. Many of our clients have done business with us for 30 or 40 years – a true testament of our commitment to them.”

This is also one of the reasons Rotolabel has partnered with ROTOCON, a company who shares the same values of integrity, loyalty, trust and superior aftersales service. “We’ve been dealing with ROTOCON for many years,” Wicus says. “I’ve watched Pascal and Patrick Aengenvoort work their way up through the ranks, becoming fully accredited engineers and working professionals without ever getting any handouts. That says a lot about the kind of man Michael is and how he raised his children. He’s a man of integrity. He believes in upholding real family values, in life and in business. And it shows.”


PDF of article»» as featured in WineLand Magazine
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