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The rise of the leaflet-label: a great idea that stuck

Pyrotec's MD Rowan Beattie explains how the story behind Fix-a-Form® unfolds
From Left to Right: Barry Denny – Denny Brothers (Fix-a-Form International), Mike Cooper (Fix-a-Form International), Rowan Beattie (Managing Director of Pyrotec), Douglas Denny – Denny Brothers (Fix-a-Form International) and Russell Denny – Denny Brothers (Fix-a-Form International).
From Left to Right: Barry Denny – Denny Brothers (Fix-a-Form International), Mike Cooper (Fix-a-Form International), Rowan Beattie (Managing Director of Pyrotec), Douglas Denny – Denny Brothers (Fix-a-Form International) and Russell Denny – Denny Brothers (Fix-a-Form International).
In recent years, the market has seen the popularity of leaflet-labels explode. This clever little device has been pounced on by the pharmaceutical and agrochemical companies, in particular, due its ability to contain extensive information in the space of a standard label. Stringent legislation requires that comprehensive information pertaining to a product's composition, dosage instructions, precautions and indications be included with the goods - yet packaging space is limited. This is where Fix-a-Form® steps in.

Fix-a-Form® is the world's first ever leaflet-label and an internationally-recognised brand. This device, which allows for multiple page inclusion in the form of a booklet or folded sheet, makes brand owners lives easier in that it allows them to include all of the information required by law in the space of a standard label - and all without compromising the aesthetic of the packaging or production speeds. Simple, but genius.

But who came up with this innovation? Where did the first leaflet-label originate? Pyrotec is the exclusive South African licensee of the original leaflet-label, Fix-a-Form®, and Managing Director Rowan Beattie gives us the inside scoop.

Pyrotec MD, Rowan Beattie
Pyrotec MD, Rowan Beattie
Welcome, Rowan! So who was it that came up with the great idea of a leaflet-label?
Unfortunately I cannot take credit for this one! Fix-a-Form® is the brainchild of the Denny brothers, and its story goes all the way back to 1945 when Russell and Douglas Denny returned from the Second World War to their home in the UK. The brothers had been given their demobilisation pay and decided to invest it by creating a small commercial printing outfit. They first began operating from their garage and later were able to secure premises in the market town Bury St Edmunds. The brothers worked hard to build up a strong reputation by supplying a range of printed materials to local businesses and soon became renowned for their innovative and customer-centric approach.

But how did they come up with the idea?
The story goes that during the late 1970's the brothers were approached by an agrochemical manufacturer that wanted to include multiple pages of user-information directly onto the product. The brothers realised that the only way they would be able to include this information - and still retain the aesthetic of the packaging - would be to add multiple pages to a single label, rather than the product directly. The result of their innovation was to mark the birth of Fix-a-Form® ...and the rest, as they say, is history!

What made the idea - forgive the pun - stick?
Fix-a-Form® is such a simple concept. Many printers at the time were printing leaflets and labels but none thought of combining the technology to produce something that gave added benefits. The Denny brothers initially assembled these leaflet and label combinations by hand and later machinery was engineered to produce these en masse.

The rise of the leaflet-label: a great idea that stuck
Today the Denny Bros Group operates from a purpose-built facility in the UK employing over 100 people across the group along with a strong network of partners.

When did Fix-a-Form® first start attracting international attention?
It was the 1980's that saw the company take the front pages of the trade magazines, sign up international licensees and see rapid growth. As a result,Fix-a-Form® International was established with the purpose of recruiting independent printing companies to represent the brand globally.

The company has won many awards for its success, but the most memorable was the 1983 Fasson Awards where Denny Bros picked up 'Best Innovation' and 'Company of the Year'.

Today Fix-a-Form® is the market-leading brand of multi-page solutions produced locally in over 20 countries worldwide operating via a network ofindependent manufacturers appointed under exclusive licence.

When did Pyrotec come on board as a licensee?
We were the first ever licensee to sign up with Fix-a-Form®Internationalin 1983 and Pyrotec is the exclusive licensee for South Africa.

What does the future hold for Fix-a-Form® in South Africa?
There's lots of new technology that will impact on product packaging and communication with end users, but the future of Fix-a-Form® is assured as packaging continues to develop around the principles of brand visibility, functionality and sustainability that Fix-a-Form® embodies.

Pyrotec has recently invested in state-of-the-art equipment and technology to increase capacity of our Fix-a-Form® leaflet-label production and efficiently process large volume orders, as we have noted this increased demand. Our intention behind this investment is to allow us to partner with our customers through offering a world-renowned, trusted product combined with the kind of excellent service that has made us an industry leader for the past 45 years.

8 Aug 2013 13:10

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