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VPK Packaging Salonta, 10 years anniversary: “Operational excellence, great to work with and great to work for”

VPK Packaging Salonta celebrated 10 years in an event with clients and business partners. The company is part of VPK Packaging Group – a pioneering packaging supplier, operating 65 sites in 20 countries, with headquarters in Belgium. “Our continual strive to move forward and enjoy sustainable growth is summarized by three pillars: operational excellence, great to work with and great to work for”, Bart Dobbelaere, Managing Director, VPK Packaging Salonta.

 

VPK Packaging Group is a pioneering packaging supplier, operating 65 sites in 20 countries, with headquarters in Belgium, producing innovative and protective cardboard packaging for logistic purposes since 1935 and continuing to show steady growth and expansion. The plans for a plant in Romania were made in 2007, and the first products were delivered in 2009. VPK Packaging Salonta is now a leading manufacturer of sustainable corrugated packaging. All the products are fully recyclable, supporting the circular economy. Our continual strive to move forward and enjoy sustainable growth is summarized by three pillars: operational excellence, great to work with and great to work for.

 

How does a company evolves to operational excellence?

The VPK Salonta product range covers tailor-made solutions for corrugated board packaging, cores and edge protectors. All of these products are fully recyclable. Furthermore, our paper is made of mainly recycled fibers, which underlines our determined ambition to operate within a circular economy. Moreover, all paper are FSC (Forest Stewardship Counsel) which allows delivering business benefits by guaranteeing environmental and social responsibility.

Efficient and optimal improvements of the production process are essential within a competitive environment. Logistics and transportation are an important part of our business. We have been analyzing how we can optimize both. The main benefits for our customers result in increased production flexibility, higher pro-activity and hence competitive speed-to-market. Starting with our first delivery in Romania, in January 2009, we managed to increase 10 times our turnover, reaching a yearly 85,000,000 sqm production and going up 100,000,000 sqm.

“To be the easiest company to work with, we want to be the most customer focused company with the highest customer loyalty in our industry. Creating more value for our customers and higher and sustainable returns for both. This is much more than delivering the right packaging solution; it’s all about being part of your global supply chain: to be trustable, predictable, visible and measurable”, Dirk Ockerman, COO VPK Packaging Benelux, Scandinavia and Romania, at the 10 years anniversary event of VPK Packaging Salonta”,
Bart Dobbelaere, Managing Director, VPK Packaging Salonta

 

What does “easy to work with” mean for VPK?

At VPK Packaging Salonta we are committed to listen to our customers and respond to their specific requests. Being part of VPK Packaging Group (www. Vpkgroup.com) and the BBP Alliance (www.blueboxpartners.eu) help us in allocating the right resources and delivering a great customer experience. Moreover, we can offer our multinational customers the solution to purchase centrally on European level and deliver locally all over Europe, respecting specific local needs and guaranteeing the same quality and services. We firmly believe in local entrepreneurship, which creates a stimulating environment for staff and fertile ground for innovation. Together, these contribute to satisfying the toughest demands of our customers. Staying close to our customers is a key characteristic of VPK. It’s what has led to our success over the past 10 years and will continue to drive us forwards into the future.

The key strength of VPK Packaging Salonta is exactly that we are part of the VPK Packaging Group and we act as a local business. This means that we benefit from the strong financial structure and expertise of the group, the synergies and the reporting structures, but act local, defining and adapting our strategies to the local markets and specific needs from our multinational and local customers.

Which initiatives become opportunities for the employees?

VPK Packaging offers a stable working environment within a framework of corporate responsibility and sustainability. It allows motivated and qualified employees to pursue an exciting career path in which initiative is rewarded and opportunities can be seized with both hands. Our recently established VPK Academy Salonta is one example of tailor-made training and development for all employees. It’s all about showing genuine interest in employees’ professional growth. In the short term, we wanted to boost their performance by reducing reluctance to trainings. At the same time we wanted to decrease employee turn over, to keep all the know-how inside the company. Thinking on a long term, VPK Academy should be able to generate a culture of empowerment. When we feel empowered, we can accomplish anything.

VPK Packaging also aims to take full responsibility for employees’ wellbeing. That’s why we support and encourage employees to participate in sport events in order to promote teambuilding and enjoy great results together! With the same objective of increasing employee engagement, social events are really empowering local community and this can be seen as a common benefit. Organized for the first time in 2012, Family Day has become a tradition, an inspirational initiative for both local community and businesses. The 3.10 meter high cardboard pyramid build up in 2017 was for the first time done in Romania, as teambuilding exercise. Another local initiative is The Share Project, an NGO created by employees. Funds are raised by redirecting a percentage of taxes (in accordance with Romanian fiscal legislation). VPK sees this as a first step in acknowledging that all businesses together can really empower local community.

 

How did the local community felt the VPK presence?

Throughout the years, CSR projects have become an integrated part of our strategy, being considered real instruments to develop local community. We defined clearly our directions and are continuously changing mentalities and growing commitment by involving our employees. The visible positive impact on the community is a true confirmation and motivator to continue our social engagement. On our way for a sustainable approach, three domains were identified as relevant for local CSR projects: education, environment and health/sports activities. Youth Community program is for youngsters from Bihor County, including Salonta. Its purpose is to invest in a community of responsible young people, with a desire of continuous development, whom are acknowledging community needs and are capable and willing to produce positive changes in it. This is encouraging behaviors like philanthropy, civic initiative and responsibility, As a step further for a circular economy, with the purpose of creating a switch in people’s mentality and attitude towards environment, in 2019 we have joined a national initiative of planting trees. For the first time, in Bihor County were planted 18,000 trees, by more than 1,000 volunteers and the VPK team was there.

Two years ago, as part of “The share project” we started to implement our own local CSR initiatives by organizing Charity football Cup (2017), local companies being invited to a fundraising competition. The funds collected were donated to a local junior football team. Through “Summer school for adults (2018)”, free personal development workshops were delivered for local community members and that was another successful social project meant to bring people together on their way to improve quality of life, in all its domains.

 

“We would like to ensure our customers that investments in our business competences – technical and structural – will continue, consolidating existing and developing new partnerships which will allow us to strengthen our market position. We look forward to celebrating together at our 15th anniversary a lifetime of partnerships and to toasting to our heritage and shared goals”, Bart Dobbelaere, Managing Director VPK Packaging Salonta

 

Milestones 

2007 – when it all began

2009 – project was completed, first delivery

2010 – ISO 9001:2008 certification

2011 – BRC & FSC certification

2012 – completing a 3 shift production structure/new finish product warehouse

2015 – VPK Packaging KFT – broadens the geographical spread/new warehouse

2016 – ISO 14001:2015 – for sustaining our circular economy

2017 – VPK Academy

2018 – VPK’s brand new website is more than just an upgrade. The new platform aims to serve our customers better by clearly pointing out what our packaging and display solutions can do for their business.

2019 – celebrating 10 years of operations in RO & HU

Coverstory – TB print ediția 87, iunie 2019

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