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Fri, Nov

You know the saying “If you’ve got it, flaunt it”. Well Displayways is doing just that with its new printed graphics flooring application.

This spring Image Reports conducted its eighth annual Widthwise Survey of wide-format PSPs. Here’s an overview of the key findings ahead of the full Widthwise Report 2015 which will be published alongside the next issue of the magazine.

KEY FIGURES:

78% said they expect their wide-format turnover in particular to grow in 2015

48% said their wide-format margins are better than those in other parts of their business

47% said they expect to buy a new digital wide-format printer in the next two years

30% said planned investment would enable them to move into new markets

57% plan to add/expand their design service in the next year to meet customer demand

55% said they have no major technical issues

57% plan to recruit in the next two years

Image Alchemy, a technology company that develops and supplies digital printing solutions, is seeking crowdfunding for a refillable large-format ink cartridge that its MD, Paul Banks, believes will revolutionise the inkjet market.

When first interviewed for Image Reports, the then 23 year-old Stuart Maclaren had set-up Your Print Partner in Lincoln just eleven months beforehand, and having spent £70,000 on his first output device - a Mimaki direct-to-textile printer - he was predicting a first year turnover of £600,000.

Jo Bostock from the Forum of Private Business explains how you can improve your business's credit rating.

You’ll probably think of ithastobebrilliant.com as Brilliant Media, or just plain Brilliant, or maybe you won’t even know it at all, which is understandable as its founder Simon Tabelin has “wanted it to be the industry’s best kept secret to lend it that air of exclusivity”.

Towards the end of 2014 Barking-based Precision Printing took a controlling stake in Sunderland-based large-format PSP First2Print and became a partner in YourWalls.co.uk, a bespoke printed wallcoverings operation that that officially launched this January.

So what’s the thinking behind the move into large-format by the still privately owned, £15m turnover company led by high profile CEO Gary Peeling. I asked him!
By Lesley Simpson

A new system of Shared Parental Leave (SPL) means parents with babies due on or after 5 April 2015, will be able to take time off together or independently, to care for their child. The concept is simple but the regulations governing the new system are complex and likely to be challenging for employers to administer. Here Emma Capper,?associate at legal firm?HillHofstetter, talks you through preparations for that first request.

Neil Felton, Fespa CEO, provides a heads-up on the early data collected as part of its Print Census launched last May. Any surprises so far?

What’s the shape of the global wide-format printing community - its size, business performance, growth prospects and key areas of development and investment? That’s something Fespa hopes to answer at the Fespa 2015 show in Cologne this May, when it will release the top line findings of its Print Census launched last May, and when a full analysis will be available to members of its associations.

For those of you considering making more of foreign markets in 2015, Peter Kiddell of Fespa UK Association and the GPMA (Graphics, Print and Media Alliance) explains what help is at hand.

When it comes to staff, the adage ‘you get what you pay for’ is apt. But it’s not all about money. On the back of news that Apple and Facebook are offering to freeze eggs for female employees in an effort to attract more women, we share some of the less obvious employee reward schemes.

Callprint is on the acquisition trail, and looking for companies with large-format print and project management capability, with a turnover in excess of £3m, and with room to grow. Callprint itself, formed in 1992 as a repro and print operation, currently employs 170 staff at 20 branches and has a turnover of over £12m. Its intention is to grow sales to £25m in the next two years. I met with MD Steve Cheek to find out what part wide-format plays in this strategic development plan.
By Lesley Simpson

Octink CEO Will Tyler was once a commodity trader. Though he had what he calls ‘an epiphany’ at 20 and left that scene to join his father Tony Tyler in the sign business he’d started back in 1962 as Allsigns, being financially savvy has stood the son and heir in good stead to lead the company that he inherited on his father’s sudden death in 1994. Then it had a turnover of around £380,000. Now it’s around £15m. And that doesn’t include any income from its sales/project management offices abroad, that he expects “will dwarf what we’re doing now in terms of turnover in the next two-to three years”.

The corrugated industry is booming. All the figures say so. And there’s an opportunity for wide-format players to get into the market – but only if they do so in the next 12 months. After that, it will be too late. So says Steve Wood, marketing manager, corrugated display and packaging, Fujifilm Speciality Ink Systems, who accepts that his focus is converting the packaging convertors from analogue to digital inkjet – or at least invest in the technology as a complementary process to fill a growing demand for shortrun, bespoke, retail ready packaging modules, quickly, efficiently and profitably. Sounds a no brainer – if you’re in the packaging game. Or, if you have brands as customers - ones you could offer such a service to. And therein lies the opportunity.

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