Otto Künnecke GmbH Engineers New System in Card Personalization to Improve Productivity

Otto Künnecke GmbH is a supplier of data-driven machine solutions for applications that provide, process and pack custom, personalized high-security products. In 2018, the company earned the prestigious International Card Manufacturers Association’s (ICMA) Élan Award of Excellence in the Best Supplier/Vendor New Product, Service or Innovation Category for its CardKiosk.

The Élan Awards are the only industry-wide awards for card manufacturing in the areas of card design and development, as well as supplier and personalization innovation. They celebrate the pinnacle of card design innovation, security and technical achievements in the industry.

“Being presented with an Élan Award by a panel of judges, who are industry experts, shows that we understand the engineering needs of the market,” said Carl Otto Künnecke, CEO of Otto Künnecke. “This award demonstrates what a strong team we are, and we feel encouraged to continue innovating new products and services.”

Based on Otto Künnecke’s Card Inspection Sorting System (CISS), the award-winning CardKiosk contains a modular input for blank or personalized cards with an optional quality assurance element, a storage system where up to 5.600 cards can be stored one by one, as well as output components where cards can be sorted, sequenced or packaged.

Otto Künnecke’s CardKiosk is truly an innovation and has introduced a completely new system to the card industry. It closes the gap between the CISS and the automatic vault document commissioning sorting system. This new system improves productivity, reduces the risk of manual errors and lowers labor costs for running small batches. It is also completely modular, upgradeable, and it can be integrated into existing CISS or quality assurance machines.

When discussing Otto Künnecke’s reflections on the company’s Élan Award, Carl said, “Ideas create solutions—if you have that spirit, anything is possible. It may sound a bit strange, but we like it when the requests of our customers are difficult. That’s what makes our work challenging and exciting and unlocks possibilities that we didn’t know existed.”

Otto Künnecke has won three Élan Awards, which the company credits with helping them secure new business opportunities. Their most recent innovation, the CardKiosk, provides a fully automated storage, sorting and grouping system, which offers three unique features:

● The CardKiosk can be used as a sorting system before personalization in the vault—different card types can be placed in the machine, where they are stored—one by one. Any sequence of output can be created, so that each card can have different artwork to prepare rainbow decks. Using the CardKiosk before personalization allows the perso machines to perform better with a higher throughput by mixing jobs instead of running small batches.

● The CardKiosk is movable like an ATM machine and can be used in the vault, the personalization space or in both areas where it serves as a storage system. Using it as a mini-vault inside of production, the CardKiosk reduces the operating hours of the main vault and speeds up the personalization process.

● When used after personalization, the CardKiosk can re-sort, sequence or regroup the cards in a variety of ways, which allows for larger runs during personalization.

With a focus on coordinating machines and software, Otto Künnecke supports customers with solutions across all areas of IT. They produce personalized, high-security products such as ID cards, passports and credit cards. The company also provides solutions for other industries in which individualized products are safely and efficiently processed in secure connection to databases.

Want more industry insider insights or a glimpse into global card trends?
For three decades, ICMA has represented the interests of the card manufacturing industry—which includes manufacturers, personalizers, issuers and suppliers—as its leading global association.

ICMA maintains several industry-leading training and education programs about card manufacturing for members. These include the Advanced Card Education (ACE) designation and the web-based Card Industry Training & Education (CITE) programs, which provide information on key areas of the industry, as well as online tutorials and webinars on specific topics from card industry experts and leading industry suppliers.

ICMA also provides reports on the card market and on personalization and fulfillment statistics to keep members informed of emerging trends and changing standards.

The organization hosts three conferences each year. The main event is the Annual Card Manufacturing & Personalization EXPO and the other two conferences are CardTREX North America and CardTREX Europe.

To learn more about the benefits of ICMA membership, click here.