Excellent results for the event that from 25 June to the 29th saw over 2000 operators from across the globe visiting the production facilities of major Italian OEMs – a 25% increase over the last edition in 2015. The visitors included representatives of the largest toilet paper, napkin, tissue and related product manufacturers.

We’re talking about It’s Tissue, organized by the eponymous business network, created by A.Celli, Elettric 80, Fabio Perini, Futura, Gambini, Mtc, Omet, Pcmc, Pulsar, Recard, Tmc and Toscotec in order to pool resources and intelligence to develop marketing initiatives that target their collective needs and growth strategies. The initiative’s common denominator was to bring buyers to the factories in order to demo machinery in action – machines too big for showing at traditional fairs and that serve a truly globalized market.

However simple in concept, the solution implemented with It’s Tissue represents a major challenge (if for no other reason than because it requires coordinating direct competitors): the 12 most important Italian operators in the sector pooled financial resources, organizational capacities, market analysis and prospect lists to organize – all in one week and within the beautiful region of Italy’s “Tissue Valley” (almost all of them are based in Lucchesia) – 12 simultaneous open houses, coordinated in such a way as to enable participants to make every desired visit in just one trip. It’s not hard to imagine the daunting work required behind the scenes to make this possible, both in terms of relations and of logistics. This year, the network was helped in this effort by Ice-Agenzia (through Acimga), which brought to It’s Tissue a group of major buyers from the most important markets: China, Iran, Russia, Turkey, the USA, Australia and Colombia.

They were not disappointed. The businesses that opened their doors presented important market and technological innovations – from coreless toilet paper rolls that are used to the last tear (PCMC) to napkins printed digitally and on-demand like variable data (Omet), to name just two standout examples.

In addition to single solutions (more on those below), the OEMs of the network showed a spotlight on advances in Industry 4.0, regarding manufacturing but also customer care and services.

And that’s not all: the fun part of It’s Tissue 2018 networking was also a success. Created in order to facilitate relations and offer opportunities for unwinding after the day’s work, with the comfort of catering and the elegant spaces of the Tissue Home, set up at the Antico Caffè delle Mura in Lucca. The program included gala dinners on the historic walls of the Tuscan city, hot-air balloon rides and touring in Ferraris and Lamborghinis, and culminated with an evening at Teatro del Giglio to see Slava’s Snowshow, a spectacle of surreal poetry, a crescendo of gags and a finale of jokes and games that involved (disturbed?) the participation of an enthusiastic audience.

The It’s Tissue network was established in 2012 on the initiative of 12 businesses – some of which competitors – that decided to join forces to create a unique and unprecedented event. Together, they represent an unrivaled production giant in terms of both technology and sales, serving the entire supply chain from production and converting to packaging and handling of tissue products for health and hygiene, both at home and away from home: toilet paper, paper towels, face tissues, napkins and handkerchiefs, multiuse roll and folded tissue products. This year, the event gathered the support of a number of sponsors, who got directly involved in many innovative projects developed by the various exhibiting enterprises: Rockwell Automation (main sponsor), Henkel, SKF, RISI and Tappi. It’s Tissue is part of Acimga.