GPE ardenghi

Can you apply a “tailor made” philosophy to automation? For GPE Ardenghi, the answer is YES. 

So much so that this concept of “tailoring”, intended as the ability to create made-to-measure machines to answer not only the current needs of customers but that even predict unexpressed ones, has become a distinctive trait of the Treviglio-based leader in the production of screen-printing machines.

The coming together with cosmetics was therefore natural: the sector has always required technologically-advanced machines that are fast and flexible, but at the same time “easy” to manage.

It’s impossible to give a standard answer to this: “made-to-measure” is the key phrase to staying up to snuff with the market. “This strategy has been our endgame and what has surely set us apart in the last 15 years – explains owner Roberto Ardenghi -. In addition, it’s allowed us to face many challenges and implement innovative technologies. We love to continually challenge ourselves, improve our know-how, and keep upgrading”.

GPe Ardenghi

In fact, looking at GPE Ardenghi’s history, its ability to transform without ever losing sight of its identity while at the same time being able to live up to requests is the base upon which the company has built a solid reputation. And it’s this reputation that puts it on the top of every customer’s list for every sector.

Our company was founded in 1945 by my grandfather and we’re now at the third generation – says Ardenghi – It was the first industrial machine manufacturer in a completely rural area. Initially we focused on the transforming of glass tubes into vials and over time, we evolved into the field of screen-printing. But it was in the 1980s when things really took off and expanded thanks to the collaboration with writing instrument companies: we printed multi-color pens. We were the first in the world to be able to do this and are still leaders to this day in this field, working with the biggest producers in the world”.

Then, the moment to explore new worlds arrived: “This is how we turned to cosmetics – continues Ardenghi-. We make screen-printing machines for mascara tubes, cosmetic pencils, lipsticks, perfumes, cream jars, and bottles of various shapes including cylindrical, elliptical, flat, and conical. In the last few years, demands have become more specific, asking for machines that are increasingly faster. Here’s an example: if the standard speed for a machine is three thousand pieces per hour, now we’re up to nine thousand; tracking, lines with multiple colors, and particular handing of an object are just some examples of specific features our customers are looking for…In one word, a meticulous and customized technical study is required for each and every project we take on”.

GPE Ardenghi
GPE Ardenghi’s headquarter in Treviglio

For GPE Ardenghi, there are other relevant sectors that contribute to its turnover: pharmaceutical, advertising, and packaging, just to cite a few. Different fields that, while worlds apart, have a common denominator: original and innovative requests.

At the moment, we’re working on two important commissions from two large American companies that operate in very particular sectors, for example, the manufacturing of arrows for archery.  – reveals Ardenghi with satisfaction – It’s work that is really stimulating, the kind that we love to be challenged with not only for the type of project it is but also because it comes from foreign customers that have embraced our philosophy”.

The external market has demonstrated its appreciation for GPE Ardenghi’s manufacturing many times making it a “Made in Italy” ambassador in a niche sector: “We’ve kept all our production in Italy: everything happens internally within our company – highlights the owner -. We follow each phase step by step: planning, production, wiring, and testing. The customer finds a turn-key machine, ready to use and guaranteed for a very long period of time”. And if there’s a problem, remote assistance kicks into action which is a huge bonus.

GPE produces screen-printing machines for mascara tubes, cosmetic pencils, lipsticks, perfumes, cream jars, bottles…

For GPE Ardenghi, 2020 represented a watershed year where time was split between the “before” and the “after”. “There were many problems, it’s useless to try and hide this – says Ardenghi-. But as a businessman, I’m used to finding the silver lining in everything and using that as a basis for new ideas. Of course, the lack of trade shows has weighed heavily on us. We’re used to participating in 10 a year throughout the world and in different sectors. We had to stop suddenly and we were completely caught off guard. Networking has decreased and with this, human relations, which are crucial from the commercial side of things. In less than a year we’ve made 500 fewer offers compared to the past. Yet, we were coming out of an excellent 2019 and the first few months of 2020 were also full of expectations. We’ve recovered through the use of new technology and a re-working of our communication and marketing strategies. But I believe, and here’s the silver lining, that this slow period has allowed us to reflect. The emergency gave us time, a precious gift”.

Time to work on new projects, to invent new machines and redesign the automation of the future: “We’re ready to get back into the swing of things at full speed and we’re already doing it – concludes Ardenghi-. Now, our task is to anticipate trends which are none other than the unexpressed needs of our customers. The road is already marked: better performing machines that are accessible to everyone in terms of user-friendliness and most of all, that are also budget-friendly”.

GPE Ardenghi
GPE: the factory