Thinking outside the box

  • Recipient: Sheen Legend Packaging (operating as Beneco Packaging and
  • Region: Scarborough
  • Total funding allocated: $100,000
Ms. Carol Jiang with the new sheeting machine.

Thanks to the funding provided by FedDev Ontario through the Women Entrepreneurship Fund, we have been able to expedite our process improvement and efficiency measures. Ultimately the WEF contribution has supported us in capturing a greater share of the packaging market while allowing us to be more agile.

Carol Jiang,
President, Sheen Legend Packaging

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Cereal boxes. Skin care packaging. Boxes that open like books, revealing the latest gadget carefully nested in protective packaging.

How many of us, in our rush to get at the contents, give any thought to the technology behind the box?

Carol Jiang does.

She is the president of Sheen Legend Packaging, one of the Greater Toronto Area's leading packaging companies. Sheen Legend is proof that when you build a better box and meet the demands of an increasingly creative, time-pressured and environmentally-aware client base, your markets grow.

Since she launched the company in 2004 with limited resources, customers and suppliers, Ms. Jiang has grown Sheen Legend into a leader in the mostly male-dominated packaging industry, with two facilities totalling 90,000 square feet of production space.

Sheen Legend's unique capabilities are made possible largely through the adoption of advanced automation equipment and software to modernize and streamline the order process. Walking through the modern facility in Scarborough, Ms. Jiang and Donald Fang, Sheen Legend's Executive Advisor, explain how this works.

"When customers submit orders online, our graphics experts use advanced design software and computer-aided design (CAD) tools to review the projects and provide a 3-D model for approval. The computer-generated graphic is then printed onto cardboard that goes to Sheen Legend's state-of-the-art die-cutting machine, and any excess pieces are removed. After being mechanically folded and glued, the completed project is ready to be sent to the client. For most packaging companies, the process from order submission to delivery will take four to six weeks to complete. We can do it in 15 days."

In recognition of her success and ingenuity, Ms. Jiang was profiled by Chatelaine and Profit W100 as one of Canada's top female entrepreneurs in 2014 and 2015 for her bold vision within the packaging industry. Not to mention, Profit 500 Canada also recognized Sheen Legend as one of the fastest growing companies in Canada from 2013 to 2019. Ms. Jiang attributes the success of Sheen Legend to the network of good relationships she has fostered over the years with various stakeholders, and especially her suppliers and her team.

"It is easy to start a business. It is much harder to keep it running," explains Ms. Jiang.

Using the $100,000 contribution from FedDev Ontario provided through the Women Entrepreneurship Fund (WEF), Sheen Legend purchased a new sheeting machine that is significantly reducing waste and increasing productivity. It also gives Sheen Legend the capacity to accept custom cutting orders from other companies, providing an additional revenue stream.

In Ms. Jiang's view, FedDev Ontario's support is "inspiring for a woman entrepreneur" and gives her company a much-needed boost. Every dollar in government funding leverages company resources for additional projects and increases Sheen Legend's competitive advantage.

As they continue to grow, the company is expanding their international sales network and is working to tap into the niche market of low-volume orders.

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