Meet the SponsorSam Boex, Co-Founder, Flexi-Hex.
Published: 24th September 2020
With attitudes towards sustainability, the environment and reducing waste changing and becoming a major factor in the consumer experience, one area faced with a mammoth task of tackling its carbon footprint and waste, is packaging. Nearly every product in the supermarket is wrapped in packaging. Order something online and the chances are your item will be delivered in a box that could have been a tenth of the size. The plastics industry in particular is now under serious pressure to reduce single use plastics with more and more consumers demanding better green credentials from the businesses they support. One UK based company has decided the time is right for change when it comes to cardboard packaging, not least with the drinks industry.
Not only have Flexi-Hex created an innovative packaging system that can be easily recycled, they’ve created a flexible packaging solution that meets the needs of keeping its contents safe whilst looking incredible and unlike any other packaging on the market. In this ‘Meet the International Scottish Gin Day 2020 Sponsor’ feature, we caught up with Sam Boex, co-founder of Flexi-Hex, to learn more about what inspired him and his brother Will to literally think outside the box.
What’s your name and what do you do?
I’m Sam Boex, the Co-Founder of Flexi-Hex. My twin brother, Will, is the other Founder. I’m more of the creative one coming up with design concepts and taking them through production to finalised products. While Will has led the company’s growth from day one, taking charge of logistics, manufacturing and development. It’s a great balance.
What exactly does Flexi-Hex do?
Flexi-Hex provides creative eco-packaging solutions which have a high impact on businesses and a low impact on the environment. The patented Flexi-Hex sleeve was designed with a honeycomb structure that is flexible, strong, and compact but most importantly is made from 100% recycled paper, is biodegradable and compostable.
The innovative design of the protective sleeve is incredibly robust, giving brands that use our packaging the confidence that their products will be delivered in one piece. If you’re curious to find out just how protective paper can really be, head to our YouTube page to see our 4-metre drop test with an unopened bottle of Prosecco here!
Other key features include the sleeve’s elasticity, which allow it to mould around bottles of different shapes and sizes as well as its compatibility, saving space and money for shipping and storage. We also think it’s pretty attractive, adding value to any product enclosed within and becoming part of the unpacking experience for the customer.
Can you give us a brief history of Flexi-Hex?
Flexi-Hex dates to 2018 when my brother and I, being keen surfers, were getting increasingly concerned with the amount of plastic pollution we were seeing in the ocean and on our beaches. I had received a delivery of a new surfboard, packaged in a vast amount of plastic, and just thought there must be a better solution. With our backgrounds in design, we started working on what is now a patented sleeve design.
After launching with the surfboard product, we quickly saw the potential in the adaptability of the sleeve and how it could be applied within a variety of industries. We developed a bottle packaging solution specifically for the drinks industry that really took off, while other customers used the sleeves creatively to protect fragile products ranging from candles and pottery to mirrors and chocolate Easter eggs.
With this rapid growth, to date we have now removed 621km of bubble wrap out of the packaging industry, roughly the same distance as London to Frankfurt – a stat we hope to continue and exponentially grow!
What does it mean to be a sponsor of International Scottish Gin Day?
Like ISGD, we’re fairly new on the scene so we’re excited to support a fellow start-up with similar values, as well as a day that highlights the incredible people and products seen in and coming out of Scotland. It’s a fantastic reason to collaborate with like-minded brands and raise visibility of pioneering Scottish Gin companies.
What are some of the most exciting projects you’ve ever worked on?
This is a tricky one! Every project we’ve worked on has been exciting – we love looking at designs currently in mass-use within the packaging industry and coming up with alternative, environmentally-friendly solutions. Over the summer we’ve been developing a 6 and 12 bottle protective case which we’re launching in September for the drinks industry. This really completes the full range for bottle eco-packaging, is something we’ve enjoyed working on and are definitely proud of.
What are your plans for the next 12 months?
Our hope is to lead the transformation of the protective packaging industry through innovative design and in turn, significantly reduce the impact on our environment. We’re looking to convert more drinks companies to plastic-free packaging as well as continue our growth into new markets.
Alongside launching the new bottle cases this autumn, we’ll also be revealing a new product more suitable for smaller fragile items more commonly found in cosmetic, electronic and homeware industries. And, by the end of the year, we’ll be introducing a surfboard box that complements our board sleeves and creates an end-to-end solution for this sector.
Finally, beyond our products, we hope to be a source of information for both trade and consumers, providing awareness of the continued threats to our marine environments and the alternative solutions out there.
How will you be celebrating International Scottish Gin Day on Saturday 24th October?
We’re planning to partner up with some of the Scottish Gin brands already using our packaging and spreading the word through some fun marketing activity. I’m sure we’ll also have our own celebration in our office down in Cornwall, toasting to our friends up north!