X-Rite and Pantone, Danaher Corporation brands have announced that Asda, one of Britain’s top value retailers and a wholly owned subsidiary of Wal-Mart, will employ PantoneLIVE, a cloud-based color service, throughout its global supply chain. PantoneLIVE allows Asda to standardize on a single platform and manage digital access rights to facilitate color communication across packaging materials and suppliers, improving operational efficiencies.
“The proposition was challenging – develop a solution that not only enables us to assess print quality across the entire list of Asda approved packaging printers, but also present complex, technical color data in an easy-to-understand format,” said Andy Wilson, print manager at Asda. “As most of the print validation solutions on the market were aimed at printers rather than brand owners, it quickly became apparent that selecting the right partner to develop the solution was crucial, and X-Rite/Pantone ticked all our boxes.”
With color so critically tied to brand equity, maintaining color consistency across product packaging is essential to ensure authenticity and consumer confidence. The PantoneLIVE suite of solutions provide Asda with a secure, cloud-based repository for its precise color data, allowing brand managers to communicate color specifications across the supply chain and validate compliance and track supplier performance anywhere in the world.
"Printers being able to validate their own work in real-time makes PantoneLIVE a game changer," said Jason Gilmartin, senior print manager at Asda. "With its implementation, we will now be able to manage our print base intelligently with true 'closed loop' color' management from initial concept to final print whilst slashing waste, reducing cost and driving greater brand consistency. At last, the days of print managers approving print at the end of a printing press are coming to an end."
“It is mission critical for a large retailer such as Asda to achieve better and more consistent color results across different categories, suppliers and regions. We are extremely pleased that PantoneLIVE is the chosen solution for accurate color communication and control in their entire packaging supply chain,”explained Dr. Sonia Megert, vice president of the Pantone Digital Business unit at X-Rite/Pantone. “Spectral data for Asda’s main brand colors are stored securely in the PantoneLIVE cloud, thus helping reduce color variation in the production process, ensuring their colors are correct every time, on every packaging material.”
In addition, PantoneLIVE’s centralized color management system helps achieve speed to market efficiencies from initial design to final production, ultimately lowering product development and manufacturing costs. Asda will begin to deploy PantoneLIVE immediately with Smart Price, Chosen by You and Extra Special private label brands.
PantoneLIVE is a cloud-based solution that enables the universal PANTONE Color language to be accurately communicated across the entire packaging workflow – from design concept to retail store shelves. PantoneLIVE extends the PANTONE PLUS SERIES Color Library, mapping critical color information to packaging-specific substrates. The PantoneLIVE ecosystem is supported by licensed hardware and software that enables each area of a packaging supply chain to access the same PantoneLIVE Colors, in addition to brand specific palettes. This results in consistent and repeatable color across product families, regardless of media or print technology, providing a cohesive brand approach.
While users of any manufacturer’s ink will be able to take advantage of PantoneLIVE, Sun Chemical is the preferred ink partner. Esko, a global supplier of integrated solutions for packaging, sign and display finishing, commercial printing and professional publishing, is also a preferred partner supporting PantoneLIVE. Both companies worked closely with Pantone and X-Rite to develop PantoneLIVE.