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Sat, Mar

As ever-evolving digital print possibilities catch the imagination of more and more creatives you’d think everyone involved would be chuffed – but of course that’s not the case. After all, if more people in the ‘applications chain’ twig on to the fact that they can buy a printer and start churning out their own printed products, ‘professional’ PSPs aren’t necessarily going to benefit from what is undeniably a massive trend towards short-run/personalised/customised digital print in developing vertical markets. What’s your take?

Today is Data Privacy Day - the purpose of which is to raise awareness and promote privacy and data protection best practices. Given all the noise around GDPA I assume your data practices are now squeaky clean and up to date, but perhaps this is a good reminder to do any housekeeping!

How many 5m-wide inkjet printers do you think there are in the UK nowadays? How many more will buy one in the coming year? Well, we hope we can tell you with some degree of authority when the 2019 Widthwise Report is published in June. But first, we need all the country’s wide-format PSPs to provide the data! So please, if you haven’t already – go to https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/C83ZNBW and give us your input on 5m printers - and on a few other things. You’ll be rewarded with a stats-based analysis of the UK and Ireland’s large-format digital print sector. Thank you

A gentle reminder that we’re calling on all large-format PSPs in the UK and Ireland to take part in the 12th annual Widthwise survey so that we, in return, can deliver you a stats-based analysis of the sector to help you shape your business. The poll is live online – to get involved go to: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/C83ZNBW. Many thanks

A reminder that Printwear and Promotion Live opens its doors on Sunday. The event, at the NEC in Birmingham, continues until next Tuesday 22 January. There’s still time to register for a free badge apparently – go to: www.printwearandpromotionlive.co.uk. It’s the show’s 30th anniversary and the organisers are pulling out all the stops so go online to check it out.

Did you go to Viscom last week - and if so, did it live up to expectation? According to the organiser, aligning it with another two trade shows has been an effective move. Do you want broader breadth events, or more tailored ones?

As this is the first enewsletter of 2019 from Image Reports let me wish you a Happy New Year. Hope 2018 was a good one, and that this will be even better. As always, we’ll keep you up to speed with developments in the large-format print sector via this news-shot, our website and printed magazine. Once again, we’ll also bring you our annual Widthwise Report on the state of the sector – based on an analysis of the data provided by the UK and Ireland’s PSPs. The 2019 survey has just opened. Can I urge you to take part if you haven’t already done so. Go to: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/C83ZNBW

Well, this is me signing off for 2018. Wishing you all a very happy Christmas, and a prosperous New Year. Keep smiling….

Just thinking - this time next week it will be Christmas Eve and I’ll be on my way to family for a few days. The office will close down over the festive period, as many do. Will yours? Just wondering how many large-format print businesses will shut-up shop for any length of time beyond the prescribed Bank Holidays - and if so, whether staff get the time off as a ‘gift’ or whether it’s compulsory for them to hold over part of their annual holiday allowance to cover the shut-down?

What are your thoughts on the formation of the Sustainable Green Printing Foundation, a non-profit making educational arm of the long established US-based SGP? What its chair - Jonathan Graham of TE Connectivity - has to say about the need for the print sector to better connect with those greening their supply chains makes total sense to me. Do we need to do more in this vein in the UK?

No-one wants to think their company has a problem with unethical behaviour, but is it worth just taking the time to consider the issue given the findings of a new survey from Warwick Business School that shows nearly two thirds of the 1,000 workers polled have experienced behaviour at work that would “probably result in widespread condemnation” if the public found out. Maybe it’s time for all companies to rethink what is considered acceptable behaviour in the workplace.

At a recent meeting at its Swiss HQ, swissQprint announced it will present a new machine concept at Fespa 2019 in Munich next spring, and that it will announce further details in the new year. Just wondering if you find these ‘snippets’ of info. helpful?

So, Service Graphics is still investing quite heavily. Are you? The countdown to the Widthwise 2019 poll of large-format PSPs has started – it all kicks off at the start of January – and once we have that data we’ll have a much better inkling of how confident the sector is as a whole, and how it feels about spending. Meanwhile, if you’re treating your business to an early Christmas pressie, let me know.

Want answers to burning questions? Tell the organisers of the Sign and Digital show given they’re asking PSPs to get involved in shaping the 2019 event. Personally, I’d like to see them build upon the Mary Portas speaking coup they pulled off this year. Given most of you do work for high street brands, it was great to hear from someone with her vision, status and links to the big names on their marketing strategies – and to get a heads-up on where print is likely to fit within those strategies as time goes by. Would be great to get the same kind of insight from other key market sectors too don’t you think?

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