Conspicuously absent at this year’s On Demand Show was a T/R Systems booth. A meeting room, located at the rear of the show floor, took the place of the traditional T/R Systems stand. Katie Munich, recently appointed Vice President, Marketing, explained that T/R is an OEM vendor and has significantly changed its marketing strategy during the last few months.
Similar to EFI (her previous company), T/R Systems’ MicroPress is represented in six other booths at the On Demand Show, and still another booth (Canon) at the adjacent Premiums show. Supporting the various vendors may have stretched T/R’s personnel resources, but the concept certainly eliminated any show floor confusion. If T/R had its own booth, then confusion and message conflict may have ensued. By adopting the no-booth approach, T/R successfully supported their distributors and were able to do what OEMs should do best—support the distribution channel, allowing each company to sell its solution based on individual merit.
Gone are the days of going it alone, by working with distributors, partnering and supporting the channel, T/R Systems are effectively and successfully providing a scaleable, mid range printing solution, and achieving significant market penetration. The MicroPress front end driving Canon engines, the Heidelberg 9110 and Ricoh’s Aficio color series constituted the big MicroPress news at this year’s On Demand, giving credence to T/R’s goal of the "MicroPress becoming the universal server".
Their other big news centered around T/R Systems’ Digital StoreFront™, a fully automated server/software solution that simplifies print job submission, proofing and quoting over the Internet. An enhanced Digital StoreFront module offers automatic integration to a PostScript printer/copier. A new feature is Advanced PDF, offering PDF conversion of a broad range of applications with embedded fonts and graphics like Quark XPress. Also new is a business card application which allows users to create up to six business card templates, allowing customers to enter data, preview and place orders on line. According to Munich, "Fifty percent of the Digital StoreFront installations are non MicroPress customers."
Subsequent to 9-11 and its inherent business slowdown, T/R Systems are cautiously optimistic about product acceptance and garnering significant dealer mind share. Business is improving and their position is very solid.