South African self-adhesive products brand TOWER has continually adjusted the makeup of its A4 printable label range over the past 28 years to ensure compatibility with evolving desktop printer and high-volume copier technology, says TOWER CEO Stephen Beattie.
“Keeping up with how the technology of inkjet and laser desktop printers changed over the years has been challenging. To ensure optimised results when using new technologies, we need to adjust the thickness of the label material, as well as determine how to keep the material flat when it passes through high-temperature printers and prevent adhesive bleed when the label sheets are fed through copiers,” he explains, adding that printer technology has been stable for a while though.
Started in 1966, the company is focused on creating products that meet the changing needs of consumers and introduced its A4 printable labels just as the desktop printer market started to grow in South Africa.
TOWER has been supporting local businesses’ barcoding needs for warehousing and product applications since production of its A4 range started in 1993.
Offering a solution to personalised printing, TOWER’s A4 printable labels are compatible with most printers. Support for its A4 range is available online and through a consumer helpline, with templates available on MS Word and for download from TOWER’s website.
Beattie notes that TOWER’s A4 printable labels are popular, with consumers needing stock throughout the year. Demand varies across the range, as labels are available in more than 35 different shapes and sizes.
“We are constantly innovating in the category to ensure we meet consumers changing needs.”
For example, track and tracing of products from production to consumer requires variable printing, including barcodes and product information, while the greater variation of products offered to consumers often requires desktop printed labels that offer flexibility.
The growth of online stores has also increased the demand for warehouse and shipping labels, highlights Beattie.
Manufactured in Cape Town under stringent quality conditions, TOWER uses a flexo graphic roll label printing machine through which the self-adhesive material is printed and die-cut to various specifications.
Eight team members are involved from the start of the production process to the packaging of the finished product.
TOWER’s A4 printable label range is available locally from leading retailers, such as Makro, PNA, Westpack and CNA, as well as from online store Takealot, and is available across seven other African countries.
“We believe that TOWER products are suitable for just about every country in the world so additional territories are being researched for opportunities,” states Beattie, highlighting that, in future, its A4 range could join the other TOWER products recently launched on the digital shelves of online retail giant Amazon UK.
The company launched its range on Amazon UK in May with the aim of growing the reach of its brand and to inspire fellow South African brands to brave the international online shopping space, especially in the UK.
Despite its small size geographically, the UK is a big e-commerce player, with online sales worth $99-billion a year, equating to a 14.5% share of the global e-commerce market, explains TOWER.
“We want to honour our roots and leverage our international ties to share the benefits of our products in every office, school and home worldwide,” says Beattie.
TOWER has chosen to sell its 30-best-selling labels and stickers, which are focused on encouraging and rewarding learners, on Amazon.
“Acknowledgment of a job well done, or the encouragement to keep trying, are important affirmations to provide children when they are learning, and TOWER hopes it can spread joy and positivity to children and inspire other South African businesses to reach for success beyond the borders of South Africa,” adds Beattie.