Winner of the Design Management Award 2019

Award winner

Varga-Flexo Ltd.

About

Varga-Flexo – a family business that has been operating for more than twenty-five years now with the participation of the family’s third generation – specialises in the design and production of flexographic printing presses, laminators, slitters and plate-mounters, which constitute a special segment of the printing industry. A market leader in Hungary and a company with an increasingly dynamic international presence, Varga-Flexo is committed to the highest standards of innovation, as well as technology- and design-driven development and client management. It maintains contact with its consumers after its machines are installed through providing professional advice, training, non-stop servicing, spare part supply and development support. Thanks to its online remote service system, it can instantly address questions and look for the solutions to problems by connecting to the machines in question.

By now design thinking has become an integral part of the business’s operation. At the beginning of this process the company set itself the objective of harmonising its corporate identity with the quality and technical content of its products, and thanks to the work carried out in the last few decades it has a competitive advantage on the market in regard to product and software design. Complex innovation, which is at the heart of the company owners’ progressive attitude and is their main drive, brought Varga-Flexo significant advancement and long-term success, not only contributing to an increase in exports but also helping buyers to join the global value chain more successfully and thus be a beneficiary of the added value the company creates.

The active involvement of employees in the company’s internal processes released thus far unexploited creative energies. The open and inspiring atmosphere and positive feedback affect not only product development but also impact the direct working environment and corporate communication, while generating further success. The professional experience the company gained during its more than twenty-five-year history is reflected in its operation and commitment to the printing profession. Varga-Flexo’s longterm strategic thinking is exemplified by the fact that besides motivating and providing further training to its own experts, it is committed to supporting the work of educational institutions and sharing the knowledge it has accumulated. In order to realise the latter ambition, the owners founded the Flexo Innovation Cluster in conjunction with like-minded companies. This Cluster is an efficient forum of knowledge transfer and a means of promoting a continuous professional dialogue between market players that believe in cooperation as a possible path of development, while being open and willing to devote resources to innovation and joint development projects.

The attitude Varga-Flexo represents stands out as an example since their consistent hard work and progressive philosophy has turned the family business that started out from the small village of Lengyeltóti into a globally recognised business with its products being competitive from Los Angeles to Moscow.

Jury statement

Varga-Flexo Ltd is a Hungarian representative of cutting edge printing technology with the fruitful combination of design thinking and innovative management having formed the core of its activity since the beginning of its 25-year-old history. Technological innovation was only the first step on the path that leads from identifying international trends to becoming its influencer as a market leader. Using the tools of design management, the company first renewed its development process, then its physical and intellectual working environment and finally its diverse communication practice.

The family enterprise employs fifty professionals and became a ‘high-tech manufactory’ – to use their own phrase – by involving every member of their community in the challenges of realising new developments. Team work, in-house tenders and the maximum exploitation of talent are the foundation of their consistently transparent strategy implementation. Commitment in the area of feedback generated a uniquely self-driven process of updating the product portfolio and contributed to the increasingly efficient implementation of market operations. All this is made outstandingly successful thanks to the business’s thorough research and analysis of the customer environment and its needs as well as the utilisation of this knowledge with a consistent managerial attitude.

Varga-Flexo’s absolute dedication to the practice of social responsibility is manifest in their participation in the university education of professional and innovation management know-how and the presentation of case studies. Passing down the company’s values and its internal traditions and the community-level acknowledgment of individual achievement are a pronounced part of the business’s corporate culture, and this ’team spirit’ has been recognised not only by the business’s development partners – e.g. the Industry 4.0 sectoral management of Bosch – but also by the audiences of prominent international trade fairs and exhibitions.

Based on the above, the special distinction awarded to Varga-Flexo at last year’s Hungarian Innovation Grand Prix and its winning the concept category of the Hungarian Design Award were clearly justified and well deserved. A worthy addition to these is this year’s Design Management Award, which we grant to Varga-Flexo for its exemplary performance, value system and business attitude, which will be detailed below.