North America Joins the Revolution
FESPA Brings an Educational Twist to PSPs
FESPA Americas, co-located with Graphics of the Americas, held in Orlando, FL, at the Orange County Convention Center commenced with a champagne toast to welcome the European-based organization to North America. Notable highlights included the FESPA Global Business Forum and Wide Format Print Shop Live, which educated print service providers (PSPs) on the benefits of proper sales and marketing and wide format digital workflow, respectively.
The global business forum was held on February 24 and 25, 2011, offering seminars on business growth, communications, and sustainability. Speakers participated on panels held at the end of each segment to encourage audience participation. On the first day, Jeff Hayes, president, InfoTrends, provided insight on the direction of customer demands. Over 80 percent of those polled in a 2010 survey replied shorter turnaround is the largest request. Hayes also shared statistics on where the future success of wide format lies—52 percent said digital and 22 percent promotional print providers.
The theme of the forum focused on the PSP as an innovator, not an order taker. Showing clients all the capabilities of a print shop allows for a stronger relationship. Frazer Chesterman, managing director, and Marcus Timson, sales and marketing director, FESPA, noted in their opening presentation that our world is moving away from a production-type industry and towards a conceptual/innovative industry that revolves around creativity.
The second day of the forum focused on sustainability, primarily how PSPs can become “green” print shops. Stephen Goddard, head of sustainability, Hewlett-Packard (HP), shared tips and tricks on recognizing reputable green certification outlets. The Sustainable Green Printing Partnership (SGP) was also discussed. HP is one vendor involved in this program.
Paul Lilienthal, director, SGP, and president, Pictura Graphics, outlined the history of SGP, which certifies shops with different types of printing processes—not just digital. For those PSPs looking to gain access into the program, they must implement sustainable methods through products used to create print; workflow processes; basic methods in day-to-day business solutions such as energy consumption, landscaping, and even cleaning solutions; and monitor all of these changes using metrics. As of 2010, 27 printers were certified under SGP.
Wide Format Print Shop Live featured print jobs run on the show floor, with machine operators and product managers available for questions. Hardware from EFI, EskoArtwork, HP, and Roland DGA Corporation was found at the booth; with additional partnership from Caldera Graphics. Attendees were invited to submit PDFs and follow the pre- to post-press process; learning about color correction, printing, and software used to efficiently produce a finished graphic.
FESPA’s initial foray into the North American market with a trade show—last year’s event in Miami, FL was a summit—was a refreshing addition to the educational opportunities already available to PSPs in this area of the world.
Apr2011, Digital Output