Clas Ohlson modernizes operations with MPERIA A-Series, maximizing efficiency, flexibility, and operational safety.
Industry: Consumer Packaged Goods
Application: Automated Labeling
Products: MPERIA Controller, A-Series print-and-apply labeling system
When Clas Ohlson — one of Sweden’s largest mail order companies — was adding a new line to their distribution center, they saw an opportunity to level up with a print-and-apply system more advanced than anything they’d used in the past. To modernize their operation, they turned to their long-term partner, SysCon, who recommended Matthews’ MPERIA® A-Series for the application. Clas Ohlson implemented eight MPERIA labeling systems on four production lines, improving overall efficiency and setting the operation up for long-term success.
Clas Ohlson’s Insjön distribution center is a critical component of the company’s international business and success. The facility is the sole point of distribution for approximately 224 Clas Ohlson retail locations as well as the entire e-commerce operation. Since 1992, the production lines have used labeling technology that had since become outdated both in terms of reliability, ergonomics, and safety features.
As Clas Ohlson was expanding its operations, it needed a system that could keep up with demand. They needed a modern print-and-apply labeling system that would provide best-in-class performance, efficiency, flexibility, and safety while integrating seamlessly with other line components and being easily scalable to accommodate further expansion and growth.
In collaboration with long-time business partner SysCon, Clas Ohlson set out to find a new labeling solution that would meet all of the company’s requirements. SysCon recommended the MPERIA® A-Series labeling systems from Matthews Marking Systems, which is easily integrated thanks to its superior flexibility.
Each of the four packaging lines has two print-and-apply labeling systems (LPAs), each with an MPERIA controller, and enables the labeling of shipping cartons of different sizes and heights. The first LPA prints and applies an ID label to the side of the empty shipping carton, that ID label contains an automatically generated nine-digit serialized barcode that MPERIA increments by one with each label. This barcode label is used to uniquely identify the shipping carton and its contents along the entire packaging line.
The second labeling system, positioned in the area after the carton sealing machine, prints and applies the shipping label from above onto the shipping carton. The content of the shipping label is created using data sent to the MPERIA controller from a scan of the ID label and a corresponding database comparison. All label layouts are created in Matthews Marking Systems’ Windows-based label design program and stored in the MPERIA controller.
Maximum Flexibility & Adaptability
The small footprint of the MPERIA A-Series allows for quick and simple line integration. In Clas Ohlson’s case, the MPERIA A-Series was easily configured to label a variety of box sizes. Additionally, the variety of applicators facilitates a right-fit approach to each customer’s unique requirements, ensuring every label is securely attached.
The MPERIA controller’s native integration capability allows the customer to easily send shipping information for printing shipping labels on each carton. The correct shipping address is based on a scan of the ID label affixed to the side of the box.
Ease of Operation & Simplified Maintenance
The MPERIA A-Series is specifically designed to streamline production line operations with optimized labeling. The system offers tool-free maintenance, a simple paper path with fewer moving parts and easy access for label roll replacement, and an operator-friendly user interface that includes warnings like “paper low” and alarms like “paper out” to keep the line up and running.
Minimal moving parts combined with intelligent control and fewer trap points keep operators safe. The intentional design of the system eliminates the need for bulky cages or bolt-on protection systems.
Because MPERIA is a truly universal controller, it’s easy to expand capacity with additional lines as needed. And the system integrates seamlessly with a variety of components such as label verification and validation — all without expensive middleware.
Matthews MPERIA A-Series provides Clas Ohlson with a comprehensive solution that is reliable, flexible, safe, scalable, and easy to operate. As a result, Clas Ohlson has been able to streamline their labeling operation to improve efficiency, which in turn reduces costs and enables Clas Ohlson to deliver a best-in-class customer experience.
About Clas Ohlson
Clas Ohlson was founded in 1918 as a mail order business in Insjön, Sweden. Today, they are one of the strongest Nordic retail brands with 224 locations in three markets — Sweden, Norway, and Finland — and a robust online business. The company offers a wide range of products that help people fix their homes in a practical and sustainable way. Their ambitious sustainability target is to become climate neutral and fully circular by 2045.
Headquartered in Karlstad, Sweden, SysCon is an innovative technology company focusing on Automation and Industrial IT solutions. From consulting to spare parts and emergency troubleshooting, SysCon provides their customers with turnkey service and future-proof designs featuring the most modern and forward-looking products and technology. Working with a large network of external partners with expertise in a wide range of specialties, SysCon serves customers and projects all across Europe, and has developed a reputation for reliability, high competence, and long-term relationships based on shared goals.