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I had the opportunity to participate in an analyst briefing at Pantone in late February, and X-Rite President & CEO Tom Vacchiano took the time to speak with Senior Editor Cary Sherburne one-on-one with an update on X-Rite/Pantone strategy—where the company’s been and where it is going. Read more.
Printers are facing an increasing number of challenges due to rapid changes in the economy, technology and the marketplace. It is easy to get mired in viewing these changes as negative and the demise of an industry. However, for this article I will focus on the positive side of these changes.
With the industry suffering from a paralysis invoked by the economic crisis eyes will turn to drupa 2012 to see how the future will shape up.
FedEx Office recently announced that it would be accelerating investment in grand format printing services in selected centralized production centers to supplement its service offerings. The same release also reported that Boeing had selected FedEx Office as its print service provider of choice. WhatTheyThink Senior Editor Cary Sherburne talked to the company to learn more.
On February 2nd, Presstek announced the appointment of Stanley E. Freimuth as Chairman, President & CEO. Mr. Freimuth, who stepped into the role on February 13th, spent nearly 25 years with Fujifilm where he ultimately had responsibility for all Fujifilm U.S.A businesses. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke with Freimuth about his reasons for taking on the role and his expectations for the firm and the market.
In 2003, Clay Christensen and Mike Raynor published a bestselling book entitled The Innovator's Solution: Creating and Sustaining Successful Growth. The authors discuss how established companies need to create disruptions rather than being destroyed by them. Businesses must turn innovative ideas into disruptive products and services that will lead to long-term profitable growth. This article outlines key strategies from the book and provides an example of a retailer that has taken action to generate growth.
By exhibiting as a group at drupa 2012, the members of the PrintCity Alliance hope to present a continuum of solutions that visitors will find well adapted to the new realities of the print marketplace. Previews of some of their show offerings are here.
As the number of printing services declines; the number of printing services increases. You read that correctly.
This series by David L. Zwang focuses on current production inkjet products and their application in the market today. This series will run every 3 weeks leading up to drupa 2012. In this seventh article of the series, David looks at Screen, its production inkjet offerings and applications.
IDEAlliance® recently announced that attendee registration is strong for TechWeek, its week-long event series featuring the G7 Forum 2012, TechConference 2012 and XTech 2012 Seminars. Slated for March 12-16, 2012 in Rosemont, IL, the conference offers a mix of educational sessions, hands-on computer labs, and networking opportunities for media production professionals.
Good customer testimonials can help your business stand out in a crowd and enable more meaningful marketing. This article discusses the characteristics associated with good testimonials and explains how you can use them to differentiate your business.
The announcement that Jeff Jacobson, President & CEO of Presstek, was departing the company to take on a senior role at Xerox caught many industry watchers by surprise. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke with Jacobson to get the story behind the story.
At drupa 2012, the PrintCity Alliance will emphasize and promote the future of print from its usual location on the Messe Düsseldorf fairgrounds. Last week, some of its members gave a preview of what awaits visitors to Hall 6.
At the recent PODi AppForum conference, keynote speaker Ken Schmidt spoke passionately about the need to create a compelling message for your business – a message that connects emotionally with prospects and stands out from the crowd. Too often, Ken says that companies say what makes them great is quality, service and reliability when these items are merely givens - table stakes. And what’s worse, it’s a boring message that causes prospect’s eyes to glaze over. It eventually leads to competition based solely on price – and there go your profit margins.
Procter & Gamble, tablet computing, and the S&P 499... Dr. Joe ties them all together and comes up with urgency and entrepreneurship and something about backbones. He even includes one of those really cluttered charts that he's famous for. It's just another Dr. Joe column, but this one might rattle the common wisdom when it doesn't want to be rattled... again.
Technology on its own cannot solve your business challenges. It can play a part, it can enable your strategy, it can free up your labor but the real benefits of technology come from the people and the processes around it.
The SMB market provides an enticing, yet challenging, sales opportunity for print service providers. Today's small businesses are seeking partners to help them sell in the cross-media world. They want the solutions that integrate and automate marketing across print, online, mobile, and social media channels. This article cites survey findings and highlights industry examples of service providers and software solutions providers that are beginning to approach automated marketing via cloud-based solutions for small businesses.
Andy takes a look at three companies and their products that he feels will be major highlights of drupa.
Today, Epson launched its next generation, newly-branded 64” solvent printer – the SureColor S30670 is a four-color solvent printer (CMYK) using Epson UltraChrome GS2 ink. Read more.
An environmentally responsible approach to print production not only helps the energy intensive industry minimize its impact, it is also an essential business tool as will be widely demonstrated at drupa 2012.
Dscoop, the wildly successful HP digital printing users group, has added a new conference to its repertoire. Co-located with Dscoop7 being held in Washington D.C. March 22-24, the event, DSee, takes place on March 22, 2012, and has already sold out. Hear more from Dscoop board members and HP about this novel event.
e-Readers are definitely here to stay, so the printing and publishing worlds must change with the times. There will always be a place for hardcover and paperback books, but recent developments will demand a huge transition for book printers and publishers alike. How businesses adapt will determine who is left standing five years from now. This article provides an overview of the publishing landscape and provides examples of service providers who are changing with the times.
Now that the dust has settled a little on the acquisition of AlphaGraphics (AGI) by Blackstreet Capital and CEO Kevin Cushing’s unexpected departure, Art Coley, AlphaGraphics’ Interim President, talks to WhatTheyThink Senior Editor Cary Sherburne about the AGI perspective, future prospects and franchisee reaction.
No matter what is happening to other print industry metrics, M&As are trending up. This can be to the advantage of many printing companies seeking growth or a path to staying in operation.
In this sixth article of the series, David looks at Fujifilm, its production inkjet offerings and applications.
Andy Tribute takes a look at Langley Holdings which recently acquired the manroland sheetfed division.
In today’s market, data-driven personalized marketing has never been more important. Every buyer has his or her individual needs, preferences, resources, and behaviors. Since it is virtually impossible to cater to each customer’s individual characteristics, marketers attempt to group customers into market segments by variables they have in common. This article provides a discussion of service providers that are using market segmentation to improve their business results.
Cary Sherburne, WhatTheyThink’s Senior Editor, had a few questions for Allegra’s Carl Gerhardt and Mike Marcantonio about this acquisition. Here’s what they had to say.
There’s a notable gap between consumers’ understanding of QR codes and their willingness to use them. A company called SpyderLynk has a solution aimed at helping image-based mobile marketing to fulfill the potential that has eluded QR codes.
“Printing using movable type” has turned into “printing using movable data”. It has been almost eight years since Bernhard Schreier, CEO of Heidelberg, paraphrased Gutenberg’s invention to describe the transformation of the industry. And data has been moving ever faster, in ever more directions, ever since.
In December, WhatTheyThink’s Senior Editor, Cary Sherburne, joined a number of her press and analyst peers on a visit to Fenske Media in Rapid City, South Dakota. In this article, she shares details about the event and includes an exclusive interview with Tom Fenske, one of the four brothers that own and operate the business.
Rumors that AlphaGraphics was on the blocks proved to be true when the company announced it had a new owner. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke to CEO Kevin Cushing to get the story behind the story for our readers.
In December 2011, John M. Bernard published a book entitled Business at the Speed of Now: Fire up Your People, Thrill Your Customers, and Crush Your Competitors. The book states that the ability to understand emergent issues and act upon them with appropriate speed will mark the difference between the winners and losers. This article provides examples from the book and explains how they can be applied to the printing industry.
Océ Business Services introduced Océ PrintExpress, an online print and distribution service that augments its Managed Print Services offerings. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne speaks with Océ Business Services and its partner, Mimeo, to get the scoop.
The digital printing industry looks to Caslon and PODi for insights into what’s next and what will be profitable in the future. Here are a few of the exciting opportunities we see emerging plus some red flags to watch out for.
The big news of the past few days has been that Kodak has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the USA. The announcement from Kodak was not unexpected as the company has been having financial problems for some time, and had appointed a specialist consultancy company late last year to evaluate bankruptcy protection options.
Dr. Joe is back and he admits he was wrong. There's a season for everything, it turns out, but not the same ones there used to be. He explains how to be a hit at cocktail parties, and then wonders why we should care about economic forecasting, if at all. Sounds like he's been away from the WhatTheyThink pages a little too long...
Kodak will continue to advance its graphic communications business as it tries to emerge from bankruptcy, treating its digital printing, plate, and workflow operations as keys to survival and future success.
Jeff Hayzlett’s second book, Running the Gauntlet, is out, launched January 3rd. Read what Senior Editor Cary Sherburne has to say about the book and the SnapTags it incorporates.
Across all industry segments, marketers are challenged with understanding how to effectively leverage cross-media communications and build out effective campaigns. This article explains how Darwill has transformed its products and services into real customer value in the non-profit and association markets.
Web-to-print provider Aleyant profiled one of its customers in a recent press release that caught my attention. Thinking this was an innovative print service provider who had launched a niche holiday application, I contacted them to see what they do the rest of the year. Not a print service provider!
One of the areas where major future business growth is seen is in newspapers adopting high-speed inkjet printing as an alternative or replacement for offset printing. The various press vendors all specify newspapers as a key business area for them for the future. Yet when one looks at the market newspapers have just not moved in any way to adopt the technology.
Technical innovation and customer care are the main ingredients in the recipe for growth at Cathedral Corporation, which now aims to accelerate its expansion with the well-planned acquisition of another printing firm. President and CEO Marianne Gaige describes her objectives in this interview.
Latex ink jet ink technology was introduced by Hewlett-Packard in 2008 for wide format graphics printing applications, and after an extended period of beta-testing and an economic recession it went mainstream in 2010. During the last 18 months in particular unit placements have continued to gain strength, now totaling over 10,000 placements wordwide at the end of 2011.
It’s a brand new year and a great time for predictions about what the future holds for the production printing market. This article outlines InfoTrends’ top seven predictions for 2012 related to digital technologies within the printing industry.
As printing companies move towards environmentally friendly processes and products they must sort through the misinformation in the marketplace. This article helps to educate the printer on what to look for in pressroom chemistry.
This series by David L. Zwang focuses on current production inkjet products and their application in the market today. In this fifth article of the series, David looks at Ricoh, its production inkjet offerings and applications.
On December 7th, HP announced the acquisition of print MIS provider HiFlex. WhatTheyThink Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke with HP to understand more about this acquisition and how it fits into the HP portfolio. You may be surprised to learn where the acquisition is reporting within the HP organization.
On April 15, 2010, President Obama announced his intent to nominate William J. Boarman as the 26th Public Printer of the United States. Following that announcement, WhatTheyThink covered the long, and ultimately unsuccessful confirmation process, revealing a number of problems with the nominee. Apparently more problems have arisen and his nomination was returned to the President. Read more.
There will always be a printing industry, but it will be different than it used to be. Typesetting did not go away; it just moved to a different place.