About PSI Brand
Creating brilliant permanent graphics for the rotational moulding industry
The saying “necessity is the mother of invention” rings true for New Zealand based company PSI Brand. Its permanent, indestructible and innovative INMOULD and POSTMOULD ‘peel and stick’ graphic solutions are literally making their mark on rotationally moulded products across the globe.
For PSI Brand CEO Steve Crawshaw, the drive to find a new way of creating visuals for plastic products was borne out of frustration in his own rotational moulding company. In the late 1980s the industry was becoming increasingly aware of the inadequacies of engraved plates, screen printing and other graphic processes that were giving an inferior finish to plastic products. Printing stickers is one thing, but making them last is another. We kept asking ourselves how we could develop a way to make a graphic adhere permanently to polyethylene and we thought if we could develop a system that was as simple as a ‘peel and stick’, then we’ve got something.
The innovative solution came in early 2000, after a decade of extensive trials, research and development in Steve’s company, Stallion Plastics. It took a long time to find the right material and refine the print process. We researched materials that were compatible with polyethylene and that would melt to the surface, rather than sit on it. Out of that we developed a pre-moulding solution in the form of a synthetic printable paper that bonds to the plastic during the manufacturing process. It can be applied to moulds at virtually any temperature, saving time by eliminating the need for pre-heating and cooling. We also developed a post-moulding answer in the form of a ‘peel and stick’ graphic that is supplied on a transfer backing and easily applied using heating and burnishing tools to embed them into the plastic.
Developing our PSI Brand is a direct response to the demand from our customers and other rotational moulding companies. By adding graphics and surface finishes to a product it adds value, enhances, and creates what we like to call ‘brilliance’.
In 2003, Steve sold Stallion Plastics and established PSI Brand to focus solely on refining the INMOULD and POSTMOULD graphics process, launching the products in 2001. New Zealand proved the ideal location to base the business, with the “right types” of industry present including adventure tourism and agriculture. It was fertile ground that provided PSI with the opportunities to develop its range. We experienced high demand from canoe and kayak manufacturers who were looking for an improved, more lasting solution for logos and other branding to be featured on their products. Our graphics are well suited to these types of rotational moulded products as they are a permanent solution.
Demand also came from the agricultural industry. Tanks, machinery and farm equipment requiring barcodes, sequential numbers, and warning or instruction labels were ideal applications for PSI’s graphics. Not limited to industrial applications, PSI Brand’s systems enable any graphic, whether functional or decorative, to be embedded permanently into a plastic article.
Most commonly used in rotational moulding environments, the graphics are also suitable for injection and blow moulding as well as thermoforming applications. It’s an industry we have been in for over 30 years. As rotational moulders ourselves, we understand the limitations and requirements of the manufacturing process. That knowledge enables us to find a solution that’s workable with the unique nature of the product.
It’s the constant desire to innovate and create that drives the team at PSI Brand. At the company’s headquarters in Hawke’s Bay, the lab is busy trialling and testing batches of graphics and developing new solutions to sometimes old problems in the industry. Already PSI Brand has a range of complimentary products in the market including Surface Enhancer, Mould Release Agents and industry specific equipment.
We have a genuine desire to help our customers find workable and cost-effective graphics solutions, no matter the shape or scale of the product, we’ll create a permanent graphic to suit. And it will be brilliant!
What keeps you passionate about your work?
We love a challenge and are driven by the opportunities for innovation in our business. Advances in technology are also presenting new ways to develop products and applications.
What has been the best business decision you’ve made?
To sell our rotational moulding business and focus solely on the graphics solutions. Plus our decision to expand and export – we have worked hard to develop our export business and PSI Brand is now recognised as a leading supplier of pre- and post-moulded graphics in the world.
What is your core business philosophy?
Don’t settle for the status quo – be hungry, get out there and ‘make it happen’. To build relationships with our customers that are on-going and provide a service that exceeds their expectation. And to always act with integrity and honesty in everything we do.
What’s the best thing about working at PSI Brand?
This is essentially a family business with my four sons, but there are key players who are not family and who are integral to the success of the business. There is a great team atmosphere.
If a product supplied by PSI Brand is proven to be defective, PSI Brand promise a ‘refund or replace it’ guarantee, so there’s no risk to try!