VaioPak Group was set up by Fogel nearly eight years ago, originally with the goal of creating a platform for brands to advertise to the general public.The model worked by first securing the backing of companies, and then providing branded products such as coffee cups to independent shops and restaurants free of change. It was like putting the brand in the hands of the consumer,” Fogel explained. However, over the course of the companys first two years, during which it was entirely self-funded, Fogel noticed that many of the shops and restaurants he was providing branded packaging to were actually after innovative items that each were willing to pay for. It was this demand that led Fogel and his team to focus on being more of a food packaging company rather than one which was putting brands on the side of sourced packaging. Production was initially done by going out to China and finding a factory. However, four years ago Fogel formed a partnership with a factory in Ireland. It is there that VaioPak now produces around 80 per cent of its packaging. “We started with paper cups, then moved on to the deli side of things. We recently launched our range of juice bottles there is a huge craze for pressed juices,” he told us. Looking back, Fogel added: The market has been an enjoyable one for me, but I never thought Id be in it. In the last 15 years it has been rather set in its way, but what gets me really enthusiastic is that there are so many ways to innovate.
One particular packaging product Fogel was keen to share was the companys Combo Lid. Created by the InnoPak part of the VaioPak empire, it takes the form of a normal cup with an innovative lid. In addition to sealing a takeaway drinks cup to avoid spillage, it contains a recessed space which can be used to store food items. US ice cream brand Ben & Jerrys is one such brand which has bought into the concept allowing it to serve a two-part cup fusing a drink with ice cream. Innovation, Fogel explained, comes equally from within VaoiPak and as demands from customers. The Combo Lid idea was one Id had for years, but there was not really anyone coming to us saying this is what we want . In the last year weve seen that customers are more asking for that. I recently went to see the largest sausage roll maker in the UK which had set up a secret innovation thing so it could say this is what weve got, but we want something better . As the industry develops it will be more and more about customers setting up these kind of initiatives. A quick trip to the VaioPak website presents you with eight division options, including InnoPak, Printed Cups, Printed Bags and InstantCanvas evidence of Fogels innovation and diversification as an award-winning entrepreneur. Read more about Growing Business Awards winners:
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