EXPERIENCE, RESEARCH AND INNOVATION
Virax Borghi Italia was established as an individual company in 1906, as “Ditta Irmo Borghi”, a paper converting company based in Milan. In 1946 Irmo passed away and his son Ciro took over the activity. In 1972 Virax Borghi Italia was launched, briefly known as Virax, a name inspired by VIRAX brand, the heliographic paper sold by the company. The company has always operated within the paper converting market, specializing in processing papers and cardboards purchased from national and foreign paper mills. The paper industry is supported by an heliographic laboratory and a stationery shop, specialized in selling items for technical design.
Virax then began producing heliographic paper for the reproduction of technical drawings in various sectors (construction, mechanics, plant engineering in general).
In the 1950s, Ciro Borghi perceived the usefulness of introducing the heliographic system in the clothing industry: an innovation that allowed to obtain innumerable reproductions of the original drawing of a dress’ model: a really revolutionary idea for the sector. The first customer to embrace this innovation was the historic Italian textile company Marzotto. However, the cutting room in the clothing industry required a larger heliographic size than the one used in the technical design (160 cm for the cutting room, 120 for the technical drawing), that Ciro Borghi realized constructing a 2 meter coating machine, specially designed to produce heliographic paper for the cutting room of the clothing industry. Ciro Borghi, besides acting on the dimensions of the paper used, introduces other specific features: the use of a 55-gram support and a chemical formula that allows a faster reproduction, but with less contrast. All these innovative solutions by Virax also allowed significant production costs reductions. Ciro was a product researcher and innovator, a very active entrepreneur in the European market, where he was able to identify new products and he was the first to skillfully succeed in developping it in the Italian market.
When Ciro died prematurely in ’62, a transitory director managed Virax for about fifteen years, then the direction passed to Ciro’s son, Edoardo Borghi, who joined the company in 1977, and kept his family’s tradition, leading the company. In the mid-1970s, plotters for pattern drawing began to become more widespread among the clothing industry. The plotter is a mechanical marker, connected to a computer equipped with a special design program, which draws what is created through the computer, thanks to a print head or a refill. The heliographic reproduction system was more similar to that of a photocopier: copies were made from an original; the introduction of plotters allow customers to print as many originals as the necessary copies, reducing costs and environmental impact compared to the heliographic system. Virax, always ready to incorporate the needs of the market and its technological innovations, immediately began to produce also thermo-adhesive paper for plotter, building a machine to coat a special adhesive on the base paper.
From the end of the 1980s, automatic cuts began to be used in the cutting room and Virax invested in systems for perforating underlay paper and for PEHD film extrusion. To meet the growing market demand, in 1989 Edoardo Borghi establishes Admiral, a new company in the province of Teramo, that greatly contributed to increasing Virax’s production capacity. Currently Admiral is a subsidiary of Virax and is today the largest production unit of the Borghi Group. Admiral is soon joined by a commercial company in Germany, MPV, and in 2002, by a production and marketing company based in Romania, Roman Virax.
Virax, which until the early 1990s sold almost exclusively through retailers, also created its own sales structure in Italy, directly addressed to end customers, above all clothing industries. In the same years, the catalogue is completed with all papers, cardboards and plastics used for pattern drawing and cutting of the fabrics. In this period, the automatic cutting and the related consumer products also make their appearance in the furnishing sector, especially in the saloons, where Virax begins to operate successfully. In 2012, the company enters the digital textile-printing sector, starting to supply new customers, such as printing offices, promotion companies and sportswear manufacturers. Taking advantage of the great experience in the paper industry and the professionalism of its workers, Virax manages in a short time to be appreciated also in this new market, thanks to the quality of the offered products oand to the customer service.
In 2017 Admiral began producing a 3-layer biodegradable film for mulching in agriculture and in 2018 the extrusion plants went from three to five with the acquisition of a single-layer CMG extruder and a Macchi co-extruder (3-layer extruder), both for the production of PELD for packaging.