Green Bay Innovation Group

WEBINAR: Getting the Most Out of Your Corona Treater

Ted Wolski, Sales Manager for North & South America, along with Eric Hopfensperger, Support Engineer, will take you through how you get the most out of your corona treater.

In this presentation, they will cover some of the basics of corona treating and why they are important to you, some of the material pitfalls that they’ve seen, and how to extend the life of your corona treater which will save you money in the long run.

This will be a great opportunity to pick the brains of two people with a lot of experience in corona treating, both on the sales and support side, giving you the chance to get answers to any questions you might have about corona treatment.

What is Lean Culture?

I recently spoke at the Printing United Alliance (PUA) Continuous Improvement Conference, and we discussed the impact of having a Lean Culture. Many executives are familiar with culture, but are foggy about what Lean or Lean Culture means.  It means setting the default for when you encounter a problem, to apply Lean Processes in solving them.  Think of it this way, Lean Culture is not just individual tools or processes applied to one area of the business.  When Lean Methodologies are automatically called upon to solve problems in any process used to get things done in your business, you are establishing Lean Culture.  This includes problems that impact operational departments or production as well as transactional processes like order entry.

Let’s not overlook a key concept introduced in the last paragraph; problem solving.  Ask yourself if this describes your culture.  When a problem occurs, does your team often rely on others to solve the problem and “come to the rescue”?  Do many problems that get solved, occur again in the future?  Does it usually involve multiple people to solve it?  If the answer to any of these questions is yes, establishing a Lean Culture can go a long way.  A key component in this process often missed is developing and training an army of problems solvers equipped to solve problems as they occur.  When problems solving skills are linked with Lean Principles, it can prove to be transformative in your business. 

A more traditional way to describe training others to act is a leadership practice of pushing decision making authority to the lowest appropriate level.  This is accomplished by training and empowering them to take action rather than wait for someone else to solve the problem.  How many times have your heard yourself or your leaders say “We don’t have time to train… or work on strategic implementation… or…. (fill in the blank).  When this concept is employed as part of the overall business strategy, you ultimately free up time for leaders to “lead” instead of “doing” things others are capable of doing.

I employed this approach with a leader who was routinely in tears, stressed to the max, getting calls at night and working weekends to get the work done.  A few short months into using this approach, she was able to shift some duties only she could do to others on her team. A little further down the road, her nightly calls all but disappeared and weekends were only worked when she wanted to show support for her team.  She developed and empowered her team to solve problems as part of our Lean Culture! It literally transformed her life.

If you see reflections of these examples in your company, take action and investigate how to instill Lean Culture in your business.

Brian Van de Water


SPL Consulting, LLC.


Celebrating 70 years of innovation!

Vetaphone A/S, the inventer of corona treatment, is celebrating its 70th anniversary in 2021, and continues to pioneer the market for surface treatment under the Eisby family management

It was the advent of plastic packaging materials in the years following the Second World War that led to the invention of a surface treatment that has become known globally as corona.  In his small home workshop in Denmark, Verner Eisby set about solving the problem of getting ink to adhere to non-absorbent plastic film.  Today, the company he established is managed by his two sons, Frank and Jan, and supplies cutting edge surface treatment technology to leading OEMs, converters, and extruders around the world.

Speaking ahead of the company’s 70th anniversary celebrations on 1st November, CEO Frank Eisby explained: “My Father could not have known what his invention would grow into – today, corona treatment is a universal process that spans many industries across all continents, and without it the whole sector of flexible packaging would not exist – that’s an incredible legacy and one that we are very proud of.”

What Eisby discovered in 1951 was that the key to adhesion is all to do with surface tension and the relative values between the liquid being applied and the non-absorbent substrate being used.  In modifying the surface tension of the substrate by applying a precisely controlled electronic discharge at close range, the chemical structure can be altered to allow the liquid to bond securely and avoid the risk of ‘smudging’.

While the principle behind the process is simple science, the development of the technology required is ongoing, as new and complex substrates are introduced into the market and innovative techniques are demanded by brand owners to enhance the appearance of their packaged products.  In more recent times, this has led Vetaphone to develop plasma surface treatment, which is not a replacement for corona, but a more advanced application of the same scientific principles.

Today, the company is a global enterprise, employing around 80 people at its high-tech headquarters in Kolding and around the world, and is represented in more than 60 different countries.  The pioneering spirit is still intrinsic to the company’s DNA, which is highlighted by the recent opening of a fully equipped showroom facility for in-person and online demos that complements its unique Test Lab facility that was launched in 2020. 

Company CSO Jan Eisby commented: “We are very proud of our unique heritage and will use our unrivalled knowledge and expertise to innovate surface treatment technology that meets the ever-changing needs of a vibrant marketplace.  Vetaphone was the first and remains the foremost in this sector, and our future plans are designed to increase the market’s understanding of the science behind the technology.”

Vetaphone staff from around the world will gather at the company’s HQ in Denmark to celebrate the 70th Anniversary on 1st November

Appvion Launches Industry-Leading Phenol-Free Direct Thermal Chemistry

Appleton, Wisconsin, October 14, 2021 – Appvion Operations, Inc., continuing its focus as a responsible coatings solution provider, introduces a patent-pending, phenol-free technology that is foundational for its future direct thermal portfolio. As a leading innovator, Appvion builds upon its long history of material science and delivers a chemistry design utilizing phenol-free materials that are safer for human health and the environment. 

“As an industry leader, we stopped producing direct thermal products with Bisphenol-A (BPA) in 2006. Today, we understand phenol studies have shown rising human, reproductive, and environmental concerns. As a result, our R&D team pushed the limits to create a phenol-free chemistry,” shared Graeme Hodson, Executive Vice President and President, Advanced Materials & Solutions. “Their efforts validate our dedication to responsible coating solutions and reinforce our strategic commitment to the direct thermal market.” 

The patent-pending chemistry allows Appvion to lead the industry in developing a complete line of phenol-free direct thermal solutions to complement current product offerings. Appvion understands the evolving market and focuses on the possibilities of increasing the breadth and value of its solutions. The new phenol-free technology design produces a

heat-stable product that meets or exceeds all critical product characteristics.

“We recognize how important it is to do our part and find a solution to eliminate phenols. Launching a phenol-free portfolio of products is ideal for human health, the environment, and our long-term business strategy,” said Meyer Weiss, Vice President, Advanced Materials & Solutions. “We tasked our team with developing a business compatible solution that did not sacrifice the product quality or performance that we are known for, and they delivered.”

Résiste Rx with Phenol-Free Technology is Appvion’s first commercialized product within this new portfolio. Résiste Rx serves the pharmaceutical market as a variable information printed (VIP) direct thermal label for pharmacy and mailorder prescriptions. To learn more, please contact your Appvion sales representative or visit us at 

About Appvion Operations, Inc. 

Appvion was founded in 1907 and is a pioneer in material science, providing full-service specialty and highperformance coating solutions. Headquartered in Appleton, Wisconsin, Appvion develops innovative, water-based, and environmentally responsible coating solutions for consumers’ everyday life. Primary product offerings include direct thermal paper and film solutions and renewable, fiber-based consumer and industrial packaging solutions. Appvion applies functional coating solutions to a wide variety of flexible substrates, including products from an FDA-compliant facility. As a leading manufacturer in North America, you can count on Appvion to tackle your customers’ biggest challenges. Connect with us on Twitter and LinkedIn to learn more.


Appleton, Wisconsin, October 6, 2021 – Appvion Operations, Inc. is pleased to announce the creation of their Advanced Materials and Solutions business division, which leads growth and innovation objectives that utilize core competencies and leverages the DNA of the heritage company. The Advanced Materials and Solutions (AMS) division contains the current direct thermal and dye sublimation businesses.

“Rethinking the tag, label, and entertainment (TLE) thermal business unit was important to support our forward-looking vision and better represent today’s offerings,” shared Graeme Hodson, Executive Vice President and President, Advanced Materials & Solutions. “We aspire to create a diverse range of innovative and socially responsible product solutions that address the anticipated needs of the global market, and our AMS team is in a position to achieve this.”

As a world-class provider, the AMS business creates unique solutions that make a material difference in consumers’ everyday life. Appvion is a highly technical and specialized manufacturer that categorizes direct thermal technology as an advanced material. The AMS business focuses on consistently demonstrating to customers and stakeholders their ability to develop and produce innovative products and apply proprietary coatings to various substrates.

“The AMS team has set out to challenge and align the organization to look beyond established business boundaries,” adds Meyer Weiss, Vice President, Advanced Materials and Solutions. “Our forward-looking focus energizes the team, and we expect the AMS business to look different one year from today and undoubtedly different five years from today.”

Under Appvion’s corporate umbrella, there are two primary business units:
– Advanced Materials and Solutions
– Packaging and Specialty Coatings

Appvion’s new strategy ensures synergies between the business divisions, including intellectual capital, expertise, and technology. For more information, visit

About Appvion Operations, Inc.

Appvion was founded in 1907 and is a pioneer in material science, providing full-service specialty and high-performance coating solutions. Headquartered in Appleton, Wisconsin, Appvion develops innovative, water-based, and environmentally responsible coating solutions for consumers’ everyday life. Primary product offerings include direct thermal paper and film solutions and renewable, fiber-based consumer and industrial packaging solutions. Appvion’s functional coating solutions are applied to a wide variety of flexible substrates, including products from an FDA-compliant facility. As a leading manufacturer in North America, you can count on Appvion to tackle your customers’ biggest challenges. Connect with us on Twitter and LinkedIn to learn more.

Rol-Tec Completes Major Plant Expansion

Green Bay, WI — Rol-Tec has completed construction of a 15,700 s.f. addition to its Green Bay headquarters where it manufactures rubber covered rollers, metal roller bases, laser-engraved flexo sleeves, and tungsten carbide roller coatings for printing, industrial and converting operations throughout North America. The company is also a unique manufacturer of custom cast urethane parts for a variety of industrial applications.

According to president Matt Umentum, “The new addition will help improve work flow and increase production capacity to meet growing sales with both printing and converting customers. This includes a specially controlled 2,200 s.f center that houses our new laser engraving machines. We not only produce the highest quality print sleeves, but our state-of-the-industry laser engraving technology can handle the largest cylinders and process customer art files direct to PDF without manual art manipulation. This speeds production time, reduces file art charges, and prevents potential file transfer errors.”

The company’s expanded metal machining operation is already transitioning into the new space to support the company’s roller and sleeve production. Machine installs start with five turning lathes including three full CNC lathes, two CNC milling centers and two CNC machining centers. A new CNC engine lathe capable of handling 240-inch roll lengths is presently awaiting delivery. Three new 5-ton bridge cranes can easily handle heavy rollers. Recently, Rol-Tec also increased roll production capabilities with the 2020 acquisition of Axis Grinding, a precision roll manufacturer and roll grinder, located in
Green Bay.

The plant expansion additionally accommodates a new employee locker room, new break room, and additional parking. The company growth is now driving new hiring. Employment inquiries are welcome by phone or via the company website:

Fibre Tec opens new Minneapolis Distribution Center

Minneapolis, MN – October 1, 2021

On October 1st, Fibre Tec Packaging, a leader in chipboard and corrugated partitions, announced it has opened a new Distribution Center in Minneapolis, MN to better serve the packaging needs of that market.  The Golden Valley based facility will allow Fibre Tec to warehouse product in the local market, and deliver releases the same day, reducing production and transit times that have become cumbersome in the current environment. 

The new Distribution Center strengthens Fibre Tec’s geographic footprint in Minnesota.  “The Minneapolis market has been a strategic priority for us at Fibre Tec, and this distribution center is the next step in our ability to better serve our customers,” said Vice President Graham Balentine. 

“We believe the ability to warehouse multiple releases, and deliver same day, is a strategic differentiator for us,” said Tim Rogge, Territory Account Manager in the region.  “It will eliminate a lot of the current pain points that our customers are experiencing due to supply chain disruptions,” he added.

About Fibre Tec Packaging

Fibre Tec Packaging, headquartered in Chicago, IL, is a market leader in the partition market producing both fiber and corrugated partitions and pads. Since 1997, Fibre Tec has provided customers with cost effective packaging and short lead times. The Company offers a wide variety of paper grades and calipers to ensure customers have the best solution for their packaging needs. 

For more information about Fibre Tec Packaging, visit

Robinson’s skid-based solution is ideal for mobile fueling service

Fuel Station 400 Skid is popular with mobile fueling business owners

The mobile fueling service business is expanding quickly across the USA, with subscription apps making the process of having your personal vehicle gassed up at home or work as simple as ordering a pizza. The Robinson Fuel Station 400 Skid, already a popular mobile fleet fueling solution for contractors, is finding a niche within the commercial mobile fueling industry as well.

“Interest in mobile fueling service equipment is surging as the demand for convenience and safety continues to grow,” notes Steve Hartliep, national sales manager for Robinson Portable Fuel Solutions and Gas Trailer products. “Some operators even offer services you would find at full-service gas stations of the past. Customers come out of their house or office, and their vehicle is ready to roll.”

The mobile fueling service business leverages app technology that starts with a monthly subscription fee. Customers keep a method of payment on file, along with their vehicle type and license number to ensure the correct vehicle receives fuel. Robinson’s Fuel Station 400 Skid provides the 400-gallon fuel capacity that operators look for in mobile fueling service equipment.

Mobile fueling service equipment requires more than just tanks

Robinson designed the Fuel Station 400 Skid to include all the features you need to run an efficient mobile fueling service operation beyond the quartet of 100-gallon aluminum tanks. The skid includes a weights and measures meter, a powerful pump capable of delivering fuel at 25 gallons per minute, and attention to safety with a 10-micron particulate filter and an automatic shutoff on the nozzle. It even includes wireless capabilities for remote monitoring.

We have upgraded the unit’s standard retractable hose reel to an impressive 50 feet, enabling your crew to easily reach virtually any vehicle. Optional upgrades include double-wall fuel tanks, Cloud-based data transfer, and a lockable security cap.

As is the case with the rest of our portable fuel solutions, including the 110-gallon aviation fuel trailer, all Robinson products are made in the USA in our Wisconsin facilities. Mobile fueling service equipment is the next step in fulfilling contactless transactions for American consumers.

About Robinson, Inc.

Robinson, Inc., is a single-source metal solutions provider based in De Pere, Wisconsin. Robinson offers manufacturing and design expertise in fabrication and machine; pipe and vessel; custom enclosures; product handling; and portable fuel solutions. The company employs more than 500 people at three locations comprising 500,000 square feet of manufacturing space.

For more information or to request a quote, call Steve Hartliep, national sales manager for Robinson Portable Fuel Solutions and Gas Trailer products, at (920) 615-3438, or visit

Oct. 6 Newsletter Tour Recap & Webinar Preview

Click here for the September 22 Tour Recap & Webinar Preview



ASI designed and manufactured the drying system for a Midwest-based manufacturer of silicone release liners. The customer’s current equipment was unable to meet their operational demands of wider web widths, larger roll diameters, and a greater variety of substrates. In this new line, immediately downstream of the coater module is a 45’-0” long Advanced Systems, Inc. [ASI] two zone flotation drying system powered by natural gas. The dryer has the capability to heat the web up to 450oF to properly cure the applied coatings. The unique attributes of the flotation drying technology keep the web drying profile very efficient and the paper curl to a minimum. The drive and control system consists of Allen Bradley AC vector drives and a Safety PLC system that monitors all machine functions and the interlocked guard and operator safety systems.

Two-zone flotation drying system installed on a silicone release coating line. Includes a retraction system and headed by natural gas.

This new line and drying system have greatly increased the manufacturing capabilities of the customer, including increasing the maximum web width from 36” to 65” and more than doubling the maximum web speed from 400 fpm to 1000 fpm. “The drying capability of the new flotation system also is more sophisticated with a faster and more effective heat transfer process.” Id.

ASI’s silicone coating dryer incorporates a specially designed plenum that minimizes silicate dusting in the supply air stream. This feature greatly reduces cleaning downtime and improves product quality by significantly reducing product contamination.

About ASI

ASI, Division of Thermal Technologies, Inc., specializes in custom drying, curing, and cooling solutions for the converting and continuous processing industries. As an industry leader for over 35 years, our systems employ a variety of web transport methods, including air flotation, roll-support, and through-air conveyor and belt dryers. Based in Green Bay, Wisconsin, all of our dryers are designed and manufactured to meet the specific drying needs, control requirements, and spatial constraints of our customers.

Our dedicated service department can assist with preventive maintenance visits, troubleshooting, spare parts, installation supervision, system startup, operator and maintenance training, and control upgrades and retrofits.

Visit our website at for more information or call us at 920.548.1919 for a quote.

Green Bay Innovation Group

Bringing Green Bay Companies Together. Green Bay Innovation Group is committed to building an authentic networking experience where innovation can thrive.

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