When Verner Eisby invented corona treatment back in 1951, he could scarcely have imagined that his two sons, Frank and Jan would still be running what has become a leading global supplier all these years later.
And for Jan, 2024 marks his 25th year in the company, although as he remarked: “It’s always been a family business so I’ve known it from a young age – in fact, there was no way of getting away from it at home!” Beginning in 1999 as Sales Manager of a team of two – the other was older brother Frank who was also running the business, Jan spent much of his early years building sales in Europe.
Over the years, Vetaphone has developed its business in other international markets, especially the USA and Asia, with Jan as Chief Sales Officer (CSO) taking on the task of establishing a sales and support network and training the personnel. Today, the company is represented in more than 100 countries around the world, and since 1999 sales turnover has increased more than tenfold.
“The packaging market has seen dramatic changes over the past 25 years with the growth of filmic substrates and the development of new printing techniques like digital that have replaced the more conventional offset, gravure, and flexo methods in certain sectors. At Vetaphone, we have always invested heavily in R&D and that allows us to reflect these market changes by continually developing our technology – this applies to everything from narrow web corona to sophisticated plasma treatment systems for special applications, and many others in between,” he explained.
Commenting on how ‘every cloud has a silver lining’, he highlighted the effect of the global crash of 2007/8 that forced Vetaphone to rethink the business and restructure its operation to the issues involved with the global Covid pandemic in more recent times and problems with supply chains, raw materials, and changing working practices. “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, and we’re a resilient bunch here at Vetaphone,” he quipped.
Looking ahead, Jan sees an exciting and challenging future for packaging with developments in new production techniques, new substrates, new ‘intelligent’ packaging products to match changing consumer habits, and a marked improvement in environmental practices around the world. “Plastic now has a bad image in many people’s eyes, so it’s incumbent on those who work in the industry to change this perspective. That’s why Vetaphone has always believed in education because it is the only way that people, whoever they are, can make the right decisions.”
In his current role as Chief Business Officer (CBO), Jan is looking forward to developing a stronger educational link within the industry both through the company’s agency network and via the Vetaphone Academy.