Based in Bishop Auckland, Co Durham, Durham Box is a family-run box plant, supplying corrugated packaging solutions to an extensive customer base of over 450 companies. Occupying a 90,000 sq/ft site, the firm make in excess of 35 million products per year and employ over 70 people.
Over the years we have grabbed opportunities with both hands and, like most businesses, benefitted from the odd bit of luck here and there. We’ve developed a forward-thinking strategy and a flexible approach, which has helped create impressive and consistent results for the company over the years. We believe that we deliver our expertise in an intelligent way, providing our customers with first class packaging solutions and services. And this combined with an agile, go-getting mindset has helped develop a business model that can quickly anticipate and react to changing market conditions. We have a speed-to-market efficiency that is often beyond the capabilities of our competitors, whether that’s large integrated entities or similar sized independents.
In terms of our infrastructure, we’re extremely well equipped. We hold the view that we don’t want enquiries coming to us that we’re not able to cater for, so we invested in the biggest converting machinery we could buy and also the smallest. We have therefore got the capabilities to make pretty much anything and I can’t remember the last time we had an enquiry for a corrugated product that we couldn’t produce.
To keep pace with market developments, we’ve fully extended our print offering and recently invested in digital – a Wonderjet WD200 press, together with a Zünd BHS150 digital cutter. Digital is set to be a key focus for the company, allowing us to remain nimble and competitive in the face of changing printed packaging requirements, particularly with retail ready and e-commerce developments. The press is a 2000mm, single pass, high speed digital printer with dryer and coater inline. It can handle a wide variety of corrugated sheets, from the thinnest microflute, through to standard doublewall board. It prints in the standard CMYK range, using water-based dye inks.
Digital printing has been gaining ground in the corrugated industry for some time and is now making significant progress, particularly in display packaging and retail ready applications. Whereas brown boxes with plain black text are the norm in transit packaging, highly colourful, digital printed packs are gaining more and more shelf space in retail environments. The uptake in digital printing has been driven largely by the continued growth in online shopping, personalisation and brand customisation.
With short-run and variable print opportunities, as well as mass customisation, digital provides added-value for retailers and brand owners catering for seasonal, event and theme-based packaging. The advent of ‘print-on-demand’ lends itself to cost-effective, personalised marketing campaigns that can drive innovative sales and marketing potential. As such, digital offers a cost-effective solution for our customers, many of whom would previously have discounted the idea of having bespoke printed packaging. Here’s what some of our customers have to say…
“I was delighted with the crisp bright design of the outers which has fantastic shelf shout in store. The fact it’s digital too gives us much greater flexibility than traditional printing. I love it!” – Helen Scandle, Lintz Hall Farm.
“The flexibility, quick turn around and high-quality digital print Durham Box provided for us enabled us to blow away our customer and win the order. Their new machinery has opened up a number of doors for us due to increased packaging capabilities.” – Rob Lynch, Lanchester Gifts
Clearly with our new digital offering, we are now able to service the needs of a wide range of businesses from a number of different sectors – our customer base certainly reflects that. Our biggest market sector is now food and drink, while being based in the north-east we also have access to the local automotive industry. In addition, we have developed strong links with the chemical, engineering, retail and fulfilment sectors, with e-commerce also beginning to dominate.