Press Products has undergone a remarkable transformation over 60 years, from a single-room operation established by Elliot Harry Blumberg in 1957 to one of the largest print finishing manufacturers and distributors in southern Africa.
Bought for £120 at a Sheriff’s sale in 1957, Press Products’ origins lie in the manufacturing of a range of products for the printing industry, including calendar rims, Twin Wire, double loop binding combs and Plastikoil spiral binding systems.
In 1966, Elliot Blumberg linked up with Stuebing of Cincinnati, Ohio, which the Blumberg family continued to own, operate and expand until 2013.
Having energised the US company and subsequently increasing its profitability, the Blumberg family decided to sell the international operations to focus on growing the South African business. In the late 1960s, the company secured the local distribution rights to Rilecart, an Italian company that manufactures the double loop wire binding combs. Press Products now manufactures this product under the Twin Wire trade name, using several high speed German wire forming machines.
In 1974, Murray Blumberg joined the Press Products’ team and together with his father, achieved more success. The company secured another two agencies, BindQuip and Plastikoil, which enabled it to consolidate its position as the leading company in southern Africa in the field of mechanical binding systems. Up until a few years ago, the company also operated the leading metal stationery manufacturer in the country under the Grip Binders trade name. In 2005, a decision was made to sell this division, which has subsequently allowed the company to focus on its core business.
Shaun Blumberg, current MD and son of Murray, joined Press Products in 2004 and has become the pivotal driving force behind Press Products’ expansion programme, having added thermal laminating films and associated laminating machines, as well as hot and cold foils and print media to the product portfolio.
He was instrumental in securing the Plastikoil and GMP agencies. He has since forged strong relationships with Press Products’ key overseas suppliers, with whom he meets on his frequent international travels. In recent years, Shaun made the decision to open branches in Cape Town and KwaZulu-Natal to ensure that customers receive more efficient deliveries and on-the-spot supply and service for the company’s expanded range of products.
2016 was a year of intense activity, positive initiatives and exciting projects. The company rebranded to a cleaner, more modern look and launched the brand ‘Press Products Foils’. Late 2016 saw the introduction of print media materials as well as the appointment of new staff members, most notably, industry expert, Ziggy Endemann onto the technical support team.
2017 has seen some dynamic changes to the company. The principal, most exciting development has been the appointment as an exclusive agent for Gaungming Laminating Machines in South Africa. In addition to the success thus far with sales of semi-automatic and fully automatic GMB laminating machines in the African region, Press Products has also employed additional technical staff with vast experience in servicing and repairing of thermal laminating machines.
Today, a third generation of Blumbergs is hard at work continuing the legacy. The company has continued to adapt to challenging business conditions and look forward to making big strides into the future.