Harpak-ULMA, Rockwell Automation to Deliver Smart, Connected Packaging Machines

Companies collaborate to deliver smart packaging solutions,
integrated with PTC IoT and augmented reality platforms

CHICAGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–PACK EXPO — Harpak-ULMA, the industry leader in complete
packaging line solutions for food, medical, bakery, and industrial
products, announced it has joined the Rockwell Automation PartnerNetwork
program
as an OEM Machine Builder. As a member of the
PartnerNetwork, Harpak-ULMA is teaming with Rockwell Automation, Inc.
(NYSE: ROK) to facilitate the development of smart, connected packaging
solutions.

The company’s ULMA Thermoformer lines are now delivered with the
Integrated Architecture® production control and information system from
Rockwell Automation, and can leverage IoT and augmented reality
platforms supplied by smart manufacturing software leader PTC. At a
press conference today, the company demonstrated PTC’s augmented reality
application, which guides employees’ maintenance or production
activities through 3D step-by-step work instructions using available
tablets, smartphones, or glasses.

Intensifying competition among the food, medical and industrial
producers is driving packagers to find new ways to meet customer demands
for convenience, freshness and sustainability, while keeping operating
costs low. Production automation is crucial to delivering on market
demands for reliability and quality. Smart, connected machines and
enterprises that converge automation with information technologies can
overcome longstanding operational and maintenance constraints. They
improve collaboration though integration of equipment and applications,
and enable new innovative technologies associated with industrial
digital transformation.

“IoT, AI, machine learning, big data, predictive maintenance, and
augmented reality are just a few of the ways that connected machines
promise to improve packaging operations and reduce total cost of
ownership but realizing those benefits will require nothing short of
rethinking packaging automation. By forging closer ties with Rockwell
Automation and PTC, we can create innovative solutions and deliver them
faster than any company can working independently,” said Harpak-ULMA’s
CEO, Kevin Roach.

The collaboration has already resulted in advanced thermoforming machine
capabilities that aid packagers seeking to manage Overall Equipment
Effectiveness (OEE) or other crucial Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
across lines composed of varied equipment.

“Smart, connected machines are a critical piece of an end user’s digital
transformation journey,” said Blake Moret, president and CEO, Rockwell
Automation. “Together with Harpak-ULMA and PTC, we are helping companies
turn the data that’s a natural byproduct of their manufacturing
production process into useful, contextualized information.”

“Companies that leverage new smart, connected capabilities are better
positioned to offer innovative, sustainable, and cost-effective
packaging. Our studies show that adopting converged automation and
information technologies drives up to 10% improvement in Key Performance
Indicators,” said Julie Fraser, Principal of Lyno Advisors and Leader of
MESA International’s Smart Manufacturing Community and Research Program.

“Three market leaders collaborating around a shared vision for
industrial innovation makes it far easier for customers to realize the
value of digital transformation,” James Heppelmann, PTC’s CEO and
co-author with professor Michael Porter on a recent Harvard Business
Review
series on the disruptive potential operational improvements
and new business models it promises.

Industry veteran Craig Resnick, Vice President of ARC Advisory Group
analyst covering industrial automation and embedded intelligence
commented, “Broadly accessible real-time information is fundamental to
operational efficiency today, but it’s also an enabling platform for
disruptive industrial technologies. When three proven market leaders
share a coordinated vision and strategy, it generates real customer
value and market traction.”

Harpak-ULMA is already taking orders for the new thermoforming
applications, marking the first wave of smart, connected solutions that
will transform packaging automation.

About Harpak-ULMA
Harpak-ULMA
is an industry leader in complete packaging line solutions for Food,
Medical, Bakery, and Industrial products. The company provides smart,
connected packaging systems that deliver greater efficiency, uptime, and
throughput, as well as better package quality and reduced waste.
Well-designed, reliable solutions operate with faster changeovers, less
labor, and lower maintenance costs, reducing customer total cost of
ownership. Harpak-ULMA is the North American distributor of G. Mondini
tray sealers, ULMA primary packaging equipment, RAMA secondary packaging
machinery, and DIGI weigh/price/labeling equipment.

About Rockwell Automation
Rockwell
Automation Inc.
(NYSE: ROK), the world’s largest company dedicated
to industrial automation and information, makes its customers more
productive and the world more sustainable. Headquartered in Milwaukee,
Wis., Rockwell Automation employs approximately 22,000 people serving
customers in more than 80 countries.

For more information contact HeidiHarlfinger@harpak-ulma.com

Note to Editors: High-resolution photos for publication are
available upon request.

Contacts

Harpak-ULMA
Heidi Harlfinger, 508-884-2500
HeidiHarlfinger@harpak-ulma.com
or
TIziani
Whitmyre, Inc
Don Goncalves, 781-793-9380
Don.Goncalves@tizinc.com

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