Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Interstate Resources Gathers in Memory of Georges Frem

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Family and friends celebrate the second memorial mass in Reading, Pennsylvania.

On 27 April 2008, Interstate Resources Inc. (IRI) organized a family mass to remember Georges Frem, founder of INDEVCO Group, at St. Catherine’s Church in Reading. Sixty Interstate family and friends from Pennsylvania and Virginia attended the mass, conducted in English, Arabic and Aramaic.

Fr. Paul Mouawad, rector of St. Charbel Church in Philadelphia, celebrated the mass with his choir and organist. Charles Feghali and Pierre Fares served the mass.

Karim Frem, son of Chafic Frem, and Hilary Nykwest, daughter of Larry Nykwest, Technical Customer Service Manager at IRI, read the scriptures. Timmy and Danny Faust, children of Rick Faust, Fulfillment Manager at United Corrstack, were the acolytes.

After the mass, the congregation shared a Lebanese meal together at a nearby restaurant owned by a former Interstate member.

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Monday, April 28, 2008

Georges Salameh Named Consultant to INDEVCO Group President

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As of 21 April 2008, Georges Salameh has been named Consultant to INDEVCO Group President, Neemat Frem, for commercial, shipping and logistics matters. Georges joined the group in 1978 as Shipping Consultant at GESPA and in 1982, he became Shipping Manager.

During the 1981-1990 war period, Georges and the GESPA team in Cyprus linked the group to the rest of the world. In 2000, he was promoted to Logistics & Commercial Manager for the
Paper & Containers Division.

Join us in wishing Georges continuous success in his new position!
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ICL Seeks to Extend Green Initiative for U.S. Department of Defense

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Interstate Container Lowell applies for second phase of sustainability project for the redesign of Meals Ready to Eat (MRE) packaging for the U.S. Army.

Interstate Container Lowell (ICL) has been invited by the U.S. Army to submit a budget for continued work and grant money for the redesign of Meals Ready to Eat (MREs) packaging. Should the Lowell, Massachusetts-based corrugated manufacturer be selected to receive an additional $60,000 grant, the second phase of the project could include production trials and airdrops to evaluate product integrity.

From 2006 to the present, ICL has engaged in the sustainability project for the U.S. Army, one of the largest customers in the United States.

In 2006, ICL was invited to bid on and won a $60,000 Department of Defense (DOD) grant to modify the current packaging design of Meals Ready to Eat (MREs) for the U.S. Army. MREs are self-contained meals, individual rations that provide all nutritional needs for soldiers.

The objectives were to have:

  • Less overall fiber than the current design

  • Equal compression strength

  • The ability to decompose in the field

Since 9/11, approximately 3-6 million MRE ration cases are produced per year for the U.S. Army alone. The current packaging incorporates a solid fiber body and a corrugated insert.

The solid fiber body is made from three wet strength laminated liners (two 90# liners & one 69# liner), while the corrugated B flute insert is made with 55# liners and a 26# medium.

The total weight for such a package is 393#/1000 sq. ft. These packages were originally designed for “burst or Mullen” strength after World War II, but the true functionality is box compression.

After meeting with representatives from the U.S. Army Research Facility in Natick, MA, ICL was awarded the grant to conduct research and field testing.

The team, including Larry Nykwest, Contract Signature / Project Manager, Keith Gray, Design Manager, and Terry Moore, Sales Manager, met quarterly and made incredible progress with the following results:

Result #1: Up to 31.9% Reduction in Cost

Given the proposed design’s reduction in fiber and square footage, ICL estimates a total cost reduction of 28 to 31.9%.

Result #2: 61% Less Fiber & Greater Box Compression Strength

Corrugated boxes designed by Gray, containing linerboard grades suggested by the Technical Manager, have 61% less fiber and greater box compression strength than the current MRE ration boxes. The corrugated insert in the current MRE box was eliminated.

Result #3: Durable ‘Non-Wet Strength’ Liners

Through various wax replacement coating trials, ICL has demonstrated that boxes can be produced with ‘non-wet strength’ liners that hold up in a variety of conditions.

Result #4: Ability to Decompose in the Field

Testing conducted at the University of Kansas has shown that all ICL prototype boxes and respective coatings have the ability to break down and decompose in the field.

The ICL team, which has since grown to include Richard Geyer, Sales, Pete Bugas and Jim Krahn, Interstate Container Cambridge Representatives, has demonstrated its value and partnership with DOD in their sustainability effort.

ICL, member of the international INDEVCO Group, will learn in May 2008 whether DOD has approved its budget submission.

Submitted by

Larry Nykwest
Project Manager / Technical Customer Service Manager
Interstate Container Lowell
240 Industrial Avenue East
Lowell, MA 01852 USA

Tel: 800-234-9496
Fax: 978-458-4475

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INDEVCO CEO Appears on 'Kalam El Nas'

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Neemat Frem was one of four guests in a special episode on one of Lebanon's most popular talk shows.

On the occasion of Eastern Orthodox Good Friday on 25 April, Lebanese Broadcasting Company International (LBCI) broadcast an exceptional episode of Kalam El Nas ("Talk of the People") entitled Wazanat at 9:00 pm.

Neemat Frem, along with moderator Marcel Ghanem and the other guests on the show, discussed the theme of Christian and human responsibilities, including individual duty to society, human and social aid, and contributions to the community.

Click below to view the promotional clip for the program:

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PhotoBlog - Phoenix Machinery Returns from Geneva

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Phoenix Machinery, welcome home from Switzerland! From 15-18 April 2008, Phoenix exhibited at INDEX 08, the leading exhibition for the nonwovens industry.

Great job to Mediapak for the fresh and attractive design of Phoenix's phenomenal exhibition booth!

Take a look...

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Friday, April 18, 2008

Ganesh Shankar Named Easternpak Management Systems Specialist

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Easternpak promoted Ganesh Shankar to the position of Management Systems Specialist, effective 1 April 2008. Ganesh will report functionally to Centre of Technical Excellence (CTE) of INDEVCO Group Paper & Containers Division and administratively to Easternpak management.

Ganesh joined Easternpak in 2000 and has shown dedication and on-time task delivery. In his new position, he will be handling the MENA region for supervising management systems and certifications, standardizing administrative procedures, gathering yearly business plan data and distributing it.

Join us in wishing Ganesh success in his new position!

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Thursday, April 17, 2008

Gaby Kaddissi Named Easternpak Sales Manager

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As of 1 April 2008, Gaby Kaddissi has been named Sales Manager at Easternpak.

Gaby joined Easternpak in 1997 and worked in Customer Service, Sales & Marketing and Product Development. In 2005, he was promoted to the position of Customer Service Department Manager.

Gaby's strong commitment to INDEVCO Group values and his sense of professionalism will bring in new business opportunities to Easternpak.

Join us in wishing Gaby success in his new position.

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Fouad Khalil Named Easternpak Plant & Administration Manager

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Fouad Khalil has been promoted to the position of Plant & Administration Manager at Easternpak, effective 1 April 2008.

Fouad joined INDEVCO Group as Plant Superintendent in Unipak for 5 years. In 1994, he headed Easternpak Production Department. In 1999, he was appointed Production Manager for this department.

Fouad's commitment to INDEVCO Group values as well as his contributions to work procedures and large experience has contributed to his record.

Join us in wishing Fouad continuous success in his expanded responsibilities.

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Ramy Daccache Named Easternpak Maintenance Manager

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As of 1 April 2008, Ramy Daccache has been named Maintenance Manager at Easternpak.

Ramy joined INDEVCO Group in 2001 as an Electrical Engineer for Phoenix Machinery. In 2002, he joined Unipak as a Maintenance Engineer. In 2004, Ramy joined Easternpak as Maintenance Supervisor and was promoted to Maintenance Head.

Throughout his service, Ramy has been an example of dedication and hard work.

Join us in wishing Ramy continuous success in his new position!

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Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Maroun Khoury Named Easternpak Business Development Manager

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As of 1 April 2008, Maroun Khoury assumes the position of Business Development Manager at Easternpak, Saudi-Arabian based corrugated packaging manufacturer.

Maroun joined Easternpak in February 1996 as a Sales Supervisor and was then promoted to Sales & Marketing Manager in January 2002. For the past 5 years, Maroun has contributed directly to the company's sales achievements.

Please join us in wishing Maroun success in his new responsibilities.

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SME Names New Distributor in Saudi Arabia

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International furniture brands are now available at Casa Brillante in Riyadh.

SME has signed a Distribution Agreement with Casa Brillante of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to distribute its kitchen, wardrobe, walk-in closet and vanity products, as of 1 April 2008.

SME, headquartered in Lebanon, cooperates with international manufacturers, such as Snaidero, Move, and Novello from Italy, to distribute their leading lines, as well as to manufacture their own lines following the Italians' rigid production and quality standards.

Casa Brillante will distribute:

For More Information about Casa Brillante

Olaya Tahliya Street 11311
PO Box 221926
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Tel: +966-1-464-6970
Fax: +966-1-464-7183

For More Information about Dealership Opportunities

Christ Le Roi Highway
Zouk Mosbeh, Lebanon
PO Box 2616
Jounieh, Lebanon

Tel: +961-9-209 007
Fax: +961-9-209 008

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Easternpak’s Robert Aziz Featured in Al-Iktissadya Al-Dawlya Magazine

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Aziz shares insights into the Middle Eastern corrugated packaging industry.

Al-Iktissadya Al-Dawlya, a monthly magazine devoted to industry in the Middle East, featured Robert Aziz, Easternpak Export Manager, in its February 2008 issue.

Entitled “Easternpak Puts High Priority on International Quality Standards & Consumer Safety", the article highlighted major trends affecting the corrugated packaging industry in the region. Easternpak, member of the international INDEVCO Group, is a corrugated manufacturing plant based in Dammam, Saudi Arabia.

According to Aziz, packaging is a major industry which complements other industries, such as agriculture, food and promotion, among others. Packaging production has witnessed substantial growth in the Arab world, and some manufacturing plants, which operate according to international standards, have begun exporting to European countries.

Aziz emphasizes the critical role of packaging in consumer decision-making processes. A major tool, it preserves product quality, delivers product information to the buyer and promotes the product.

“Easternpak puts high priority on meeting international quality standards and assuring consumer safety in the packaging industry.”
Easternpak established its plant in Saudi Arabia, given facilities granted by the government, market size and perceived quality of Saudi products. Easternpak is currently studying expansion opportunities in the region.

Company Background

Established in 1994, Easternpak Ltd. is an ISO 9001:2000-certified manufacturer of recyclable corrugated packaging solutions, and the only HACCP certified corrugated manufacturer in the GCC and MENA regions. Our mother company, INDEVCO Group, is the sole licensee in the Middle East of OTOR packaging systems. Easternpak offers a range of corrugated packaging shapes, sizes, board types and strengths produced from biodegradable raw materials.


Easternpak Ltd.
2nd Industrial City, Street #135
Dammam, Saudi Arabia

Tel: +966-3-812 13 41
Fax: +966-3-812 13 05
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Monday, April 7, 2008

Phoenix Machinery Set to Exhibit at INDEX 08 in Geneva

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Lebanon-based machinery manufacturer unveils hygiene converting production lines and retrofit units at nonwoven industry's leading event.

Phoenix Machinery, member of the international industrial group, INDEVCO, will exhibit in INDEX 08 at Geneva Palexpo in Geneva, Switzerland from 15-18 April 2008.

In Stand #4141, the machine manufacturer will promote its full-blown production lines and retro-fit units for baby diapers, adult diapers, and feminine sanitary napkins: applicators, cut and place units, pad forming units, compaction units, and counting and stacking units.

Further, Phoenix will also promote its line of high-precision CNC parts for hygiene disposables converters.

Manufacturers are encouraged to request machinery quotations before the exhibit and schedule meetings in advance.

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Napco Modern Hosts Dinner for Dates Manufacturers

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Dates producers and packers congregate in Saudi Arabia's Eastern Province.

Napco Modern Plastics Products Company Technical Division brought together producers and packers of dates on 17 February 2008 at the Al Ahsa Intercontinental Hotel in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia.

Napco Modern Technical Division has a majority market share in its supply of packaging films to dates manufacturers. The purpose of the dinner was to give thanks to its customers.

Mark Wanna, Plant Manager of Napco Modern Technical Division, attended the dinner, along with Marc Wehbe, Customer Care Unit Manager, Paul Bafitos, Eastern Province Sales Manager, and Antoine Samih Saade, Product Specialist.

Paul Bafitos, Napco Eastern Province Sales Manager, addresses guests

Guests gather before the dinner

The barrier packaging films, which extend the shelf life of processed dates, are composed of polyamide (PA) or ethylene vinyl alcohol (EVOH) with sealing layers of polyethylene (PE) or polypropylene (PP).

Such packaging offers high clarity and glossiness, high puncture resistance, UV protection and oxygen barrier. Films may be printed in up to eight colors.

For More Information

Antoine Samih Saade, Product Specialist
Napco Modern Plastics Products Company - Technical Division
2nd Industrial City, Makkah Street
Dammam, Saudi Arabia

Tel: +966–3–812-1244
Fax: +966–3–812-3003
E–mail: tony-s.saade@napcogroup.com

Web: www.napcomodern.com/technical-division/index.htm
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Masterpak's Customer Service & Planning Department Adds Value

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Bassem Karam leads effort to identify and implement success factors in customer service.

Masterpak assigned a new manager to handle the strategic Customer Service & Planning (CSP) Department in January 2008.

Bassem Karam, who holds an MBA in Finance, initially joined Masterpak in July 2007 after working in logistics and operations for 11 years. Now, as CSP Manager, he and his team are focused on identifying critical factors for success in customer service and on streamlining operations.

Karam explains:

“We are focusing on building competency and added value from within the organization and around the core of the business. We believe in continuous improvement as a methodology, as well as a culture to be adopted. For that, we put in place a suite of key performance indicators - KPIs - to help us identify gaps and weaknesses throughout the supply chain and to find a prompt remedy that keeps our internal and external customers satisfied."

As a supplier of PE films to companies in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East, Masterpak is constantly geared to improving customer service. Further, the Zouk, Lebanon-based manufacturer seeks to create added-value services.

"I feel truly enthusiastic in going forward with my career at Masterpak and believe that altogether we’ll be able to bring added value to the company and to the customer. We will make the CSP Department a cornerstone that fends off competition and brings success to Masterpak," concludes Karam.

Company Background

Etablished in 1979 in Lebanon, Masterpak sal co-extrudes and cuts PE films and flexible packaging products for the agricultural, construction, consumer, food and beverage, and industrial sectors. Products are destined for the local market, as well as Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.


Bassem Karam
Masterpak sal
Zouk Industrial Zone
Zouk Mosbeh, Lebanon

Tel: +961-9-209 001 Ext. 3606
Fax: +961-9-209 002

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