AutoID & Data Capture Blog

The Digital Union of Spectrum and Smartflow Is Poised to Bolster Loftware Inc.’s Enterprise Labeling & Artwork Solutions

by Michael Clarke | 03/23/2018

As a global leader in enterprise labeling solutions with over 5000 customers in over 100 countries, Loftware Inc. aims to extend and synergize its global capabilities with its acquisition of UK based company and artwork management solutions provider, GAP Systems. This combination of enterprise labeling and artwork management solutions is poised to drive innovation and offer singular enterprise platform for labeling and packaging artwork requirements. Therefore, this article will assess the integration of both platforms and how Loftware is positioned to extend its global presence.

Prior to this acquisition Loftware has driven enterprise labeling innovation with the introduction of its universal web-based solution, Spectrum.  Spectrum boasts a WYSIWYG interface, as well as drag and drop functionalities that allows for text, images, shapes, barcodes, and data sources to be quickly placed on labels.  Compatible with SAP and Oracle and no need for coding in external applications, Spectrum offers simplified business rules to select printers and templates, populate label data, and apply conditional formatting based on incoming data streams.  With inventive features such as Spectrum’s Application Architect that empowers users to create custom printing applications that streamline complex printing functions, Spectrum is a data driven labeling solution that aims to eliminate human error through automation, and increase enterprise production efficiency through maximizing print speed and volume while staying abreast of labeling requirement standards.

As a standalone company, GAP Systems was innovating in the realm of artwork management solutions with its Smartflow platform.  Designed to manage complex package artwork processing and operating on a cloud based interface, Smartflow allows enterprise users to create projects and manage them from inception to delivery.  Recognizing the status of each task placed within the overarching project, Smartflow color codes each task to let users know which have been completed (green), tasks that are behind schedule (red) and task that are “at risk” of jeopardizing the project deadline (amber).  While Excel is the primary tool used to share and review data, it often creates operational inefficiency in terms of collaborating; therefore, Smartflow aims to make collaboration easier with its Datasheet function.  Smartflow’s Datasheet allows users to export data to and from Excel in order to utilize it in a web based collaborative environment, as well as create skew or artwork based projects in a master data format that can be approved and collaborated on between multiple users.  Smartflow also boasts its DaVinci application, a collaborative review and approval tool for artwork, web and video content. Instantly displaying high resolutions without additional plugins, DaVinci is designed to work with packaging artwork files, allowing for individual color separation and providing a full audit trail of revisions.  Once finished, user are prompted to approve or reject their revisions where providing detailed rejection comments can provide valuable data for the next project.  Providing actionable performance metrics and KPI analysis in tandem with these mentioned collaborative work functions make the Smartflow platform a valuable assets to packaging artwork and labeling businesses.

Furthermore, the integration of Loftware’s Spectrum and GAP’s Smartflow creates a harmonious business partnership that is poised to extend Loftware’s global presence through a singular cloud-based digital platform.  This union of these complimentary platforms offers enterprises with a full range of capabilities encompassed in one scalable set of solutions and aims to allow business users to manage the variability of labeling and packaging requirements with data driven printing to ensure greater accuracy and consistency. As approval and review cycles have traditionally been lengthy for labels and package artwork, this singular digital platform aims to shorten this process by offering a streamlined content management process.  With no product on the market quite as interactive, collaborative, centralized and streamlined, Loftware’s acquisition of GAP System should strengthen their competitive advantage and is poised to advance how enterprises manage their label and packaging artwork requirements.

View the 2018 AutoID & Data Capture Research Outline to learn more.