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OLI Strapex will do for new online retail brand

One of the UK's largest mail order and online shopping groups has selected equipment from international strapping specialist Strapex for its latest new venture.

Otto UK is the parent company for well-known names in mail order and online shopping such as Freemans, Grattan, Kaleidoscope and Look Again.

It latest new brand, Oli (www.oli.co.uk), offers a range of clothing for men, women and children, as well as home & leisure and technology products which can be ordered online or via telephone from a catalogue.

When the orders are received at the main distribution centre in Bradford, the items are picked and packed into branded boxes. The boxes then need to be strapped to secure them before despatch, and the company has acquired two Strapex SMT359 fully automatic transit strapping machines for this task.

Strapex also supplied an automatic centring device which is situated immediately before the strapping machines. The centring device ensures the correct alignment of the boxes prior to passing though the strapping machines, which in turn ensures the correct alignment of the strap on the package. The centring device and strapping machines are fully synchronised with each other via jack plug points fitted as standard to both pieces of equipment.

Martin Batchelor, Head of Capital Projects at Otto UK, explained: “For our other brands we have traditionally despatched fashion orders in polythene sacks. However, the Oli brand is aimed at a wider customer base and we were keen to do all we could to enhance the appearance of goods on arrival with the customer, hence the decision to use strapped boxes.

“We had had some previous experience of Strapex equipment which has always performed well for us, and we were once again impressed by the company's friendly yet professional approach to our requirements.

“Both machines are performing well and ensuring that boxes are firmly secured with branded strapping ready for despatch. Correct tension is of course vital – too tight and the box and product could get damaged, too loose and the strap could slip off – but the Strapex machines achieve the ideal tension every time. The machines have proved easy for our operators to use and we are confident we have made the right choice to deliver secure and attractive packages to enhance our customers' experience of the Oli brand.”

Scott MacPherson, Sales Manager at Strapex, added: “This application demonstrates the versatility of Strapex transit equipment in securing boxes of varied sizes and shapes prior to despatch. Otto have made a break from tradition in terms of pack presentation with the Oli brand, and we are delighted to have been selected for this project.”

Strapex is one of the world's leading suppliers of end of line strapping and stretchwrapping equipment. A wide range of fully and semi automatic machinery, hand tools and consumables is available, along with full training and ongoing product support. More information is available at www.strapex.com.

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