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Warren Werbitt talks about Pazazz Printing and industry trends

Published on August 23, 2012

Warren Werbitt, Founder of Pazazz Printing - famous for his YouTube video Printing's Alive! - talks with Cary Sherburne about the business and thoughts on recent industry developments at drupa 2012.

Cary Sherburne: Hi, I’m Cary Sherburne, Senior Editor at WhatTheyThink. I’m here with Warren Werbitt, who is the Founder and Fisherman at Pazazz Printing in Montreal. Where did the Fisherman come from?

Warren Werbitt: Well, aside from printing being my passion, my other passion is fishing.

Cary Sherburne: Oh okay, I thought maybe it was like fishing for new customers or something like that.

Warren Werbitt: Always doing that.

Cary Sherburne: Always doing that? So maybe you could tell us, a lot of people are aware of your company because of your YouTube presence. You were an early adopter in that space. Congratulations by the way, that was great.

Warren Werbitt: Thank you.

Cary Sherburne: They were great. There’s at least two. There’s like six up there, right, now?

Warren Werbitt: There’s Printing’s Alive and Printing’s Alive 2.

Cary Sherburne: 2, okay.

Warren Werbitt: Maybe a third coming soon.

Cary Sherburne: Good, okay, we’ll watch for that. But maybe you could talk about how long you’ve been in business, how many employees you have, and so on to start with, so people have an understanding of where you’re coming from.

Warren Werbitt: Okay, a quick history. Started in 1992 with an old ABDick duplicator. Although, ABDick doesn’t seem to be around anymore.

Cary Sherburne: Presstek today.

Warren Werbitt: It’s Presstek today. Fast forward 20 years, because we only have a little bit of time to talk. Today we’re a multi-facet shop offering multiple solutions. Today you can’t just offer one thing, today you can’t be just the printer. If you’re just the printer, you will be out of business in a short time. We’re offering everything from digital with the iGen4, we have an Indigo 4500 for digital labels. We have two conventional Flexo presses. We have a 56 inch KBA UV press, which is my claim to fame, my glory and my real passion. It cost the most money. And then we have large format. And I think just between all of the different divisions we’re able to offer our customers what they need. And if I may, the real benefit is when we get the customer walking in the door, we don’t let them leave. We can maintain their brand identity through multiple steps trade, multiple platforms, and provide them with ease in getting what they need.

Cary Sherburne: So you’re really a hybrid manufacturing operation?

Warren Werbitt: Never thought of it that way, but I’m going to go back and change our title to hybrid shop, yeah.

Cary Sherburne: Okay, hybrid shop, yeah. Because you’re leveraging the benefits and the value of the digital side versus the traditional, conventional asset in Flexo. Digital, again, wide format, and toner, right basically?

Warren Werbitt: Correct.

Cary Sherburne: And so when a job comes in, you just have to decide which technology it’s going to go to, right?

Warren Werbitt: We make decisions when the job comes in on how fast they need it, what it’s on, where it’s got to be, and we try to give them the most economical value for what they need. But we’re really able to service them, period.

Cary Sherburne: And you’re sheet fed everywhere, pretty much?

Warren Werbitt: Primarily sheet fed. Started off as sheet fed, but the digital, like everywhere else, is growing.

Cary Sherburne: Oh, because if you’re doing labels that’s roll fed.

Warren Werbitt: That’s roll fed, exactly.

Cary Sherburne: Yeah, Flexo. So and then, in terms of looking into the future. Recently at Drupa 2012, we saw a lot of announcements around B2, sheet fed, ink fed, and toner both. Do you have any thoughts about that?

Warren Werbitt: My thoughts are that it’s all good. Hopefully we’ll have enough customers who are willing to pay the price to keep investing in all this great technology. The equipment they’re making today is better. It’s faster. Runs are a little shorter. And I really need my competition to understand their business and charge the price that they should, and not be a commodity.

Cary Sherburne: Right.

Warren Werbitt: If I may, we as a printing industry are service providers, like lawyers and accountants, doctors, and emergency plumbers, and we should get the price that we are entitled to for the investments that we make.

Cary Sherburne: Well, and those businesses go out of business and you’re left dealing with the price structures that they put in place, which is unfortunate.

Warren Werbitt: Us, in particular not. I believe that we should be paid for what we do. Now and again you’ve got to do a favor for somebody, but the norm is you need to make your money if we’re going to be in business.

Cary Sherburne: Yeah, that’s terrific. Well, we’ll look forward to volume 3 of Printing’s Alive soon. And thanks for being with us.

Warren Werbitt: Oh, it’s was my pleasure. Thank you.

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