Carol Stream, Ill. – With the baseball season winding down this month and playoffs looming, a few teams are poised to make a run for the championship. And in many ways, Team Concept Printing and Thermography (TEAM) is enjoying its own championship season. Located in Chicago’s western suburbs, the Carol Stream printer recognized its 20th anniversary and is celebrating the recent arrival of an important piece of new equipment that is expected to help continue fueling the company’s success.
Known by customers and trade professionals for producing high quality printing with incredibly tight turnaround times, TEAM completed installation of its new MGI JETvarnish 3D Evolution the week before Labor Day. Built for high volume production, it gives TEAM license to take the special effects and finishing side of their business to new levels.
MGI will exhibit their machine at PRINT 18 (booth 1611), September 30-October 2 at McCormick Place in Chicago, and Team Concept Printing representatives will be on hand to explain all the benefits it has to offer.
“The JETvarnish 3D Evolution is a one-of-a-kind machine,” explained owner Tony Rouse, who serves as TEAM’s President and CEO. “It takes an already printed piece and greatly enhances its appearance. During the last recession, many people dropped their print budgets and bought the cheapest printing available. Now it has come full circle and people are once again finding value in how a premium printed product can showcase their business. We are growing fast and now is the right time to add this machine.”
Rouse has a history of making the right call. Growing up in the Chicago area, he studied printing during his high school years at vocational school and got his first job at Business Cards Tomorrow, a trade printer, in 1985. He learned the business, saved enough money and started TEAM by renting 8,000 square-feet of space in nearby Addison in 1998. Three years later, he and business partner Vince Manini, TEAM’s Vice President, built their current 60,000 square-foot facility. They now employ 70 people and count on a temp staff of 20 others for special projects and overflow work.
“I think the reason for most of our success is our employees. It starts with service and never saying no to anything,” says Rouse. “We understand we need to be competitive with our pricing, but we have found that in most cases, an equal split of a fair cost, outstanding service, and producing an excellent product is the winning formula for us. We have a very diverse customer base and our product line is extremely diverse as well. It has helped us tremendously in what we have to offer the marketplace. That said, it is crystal clear that our employees are the reason for our success.”
Rouse believes it is just as important to support great employees by giving them the right equipment to produce spectacular work. In the last three years, TEAM has done so with new state-of-the-art equipment for the large format commercial and digital sides of the business, as well as in the bindery and finishing departments.
“Ninety percent of our business is with print brokers. We do everything – from business cards, mailers, post cards, greeting cards, calendars and invitations, to booklets, brochures, catalogs, menus, publications, signs and banners, and packaging – for advertising agencies and designers to produce custom marketing materials,” he said, indicating that 98 percent of TEAM’s business is for clients east of the Mississippi River.
“We have many customers that date back to when we first started our business 20 years ago. They have been with us the entire time because they understand our commitment to excellence and our nearly round-the-clock service. Investing in new equipment with the latest and best technology is part of our continued success plan.”
A walkthrough of the clean and well organized facility provides the proof. On the offset side, the UV six-color Komori SX29 press is the newest of a brigade that includes 2- and 4-color Heidelberg and Ryobi units. TEAM also houses several Presstek presses. Rouse says he bought the SX29 largely because the ink dries immediately so work can be sent to the bindery department right away. “It runs up to 50,000 sheets very quickly and is a total workhorse.”
He points to the Kodak NexPress 3200, which has made TEAM’s short run digital side more cost effective since adding the machine 1-1/2 years ago. A pair of Canon machines, an HP Indigo, and two Ricoh Pro C7110X presses also reside in the digital area, which prints a good amount of the short run work that will then be foiled, 3D UV varnished and embossed. That is where the MGI JETvarnish 3D Evolution factors into the equation.
The new machine applies spot UV coating as a top layer to make digital and offset prints more visually appealing. It highlights raised and defined areas or adds tactile 3D effects, even more so when combined with inline hot foiling for a wide range of applications including higher profit luxury packaging, photo books and everything in TEAM’s wheelhouse.
“Adding the MGI JETvarnish 3D Evolution satisfies the requests we have received for more specialized thermography printing,” concludes Rouse. “It runs at a greater speed, which is very important for our 22-inch by 40-inch work, and can handle more substrates. Adding this machine fits with our belief of investing in state-of-the-art equipment to give our customers what they need. By doing so, I know we will continue on our path for greater success.”
Production manager Terry Wiersma programs the new JETvarnish 3D Evolution at Team Concept Printing.