By Olivia Cahoon
Part 2 of 2
Digitally printed fence graphics are flexible, durable, and undisturbed by wind or rain. They are an ideal promotional opportunity for constructions sites, retail centers, parking lots, universities, and sport stadiums.
Founded in 1989, OAI is a full-service supplier of Visual Branding Solutions with locations in Miami and Tampa, FL. It is a minority-owned enterprise, certified by the National Minority Supplier Development Council.
The company began with one employee in a 200 square foot work space. Michael Garcia, CEO/president, OAI, says he utilized his experience in sign painting and screenprinting to begin the business. He then contracted with sign companies and screenprinters to supply computerized vinyl graphics.
By the mid-1990s the shop expanded to custom blank banners and painted billboards with clients like the FL lottery, Seagram Southern Division, and Southeast Bank Central Florida. Today, the print service provider (PSP) operates with 60 employees in a 40,000 square foot work area.
The PSP specializes in advertising specialty items—billboards, décor packages, design, installation, pole banners, production, and signage. It serves several markets including conventions, corporations, dimensional signage, events, out of home and transit, retail, sports properties and facilities, trade shows, and venues.
OAI noticed a rise in demand for fence branding, specifically used for advertisements, businesses, campaigns, events, new buildings, and services. Some of its first jobs were for school properties like sporting fields and soon this escalated to graphics for professional stadiums.
OAI’s stadium graphic clientele includes Atlanta Stadium, Cotton Bowl, Gator Bowl, Houston Stadium, Jacksonville Stadium, Orange Bowl, Outback Bowl, Pro Bowl, Raymond James, the Superbowl, and Tropicana Field.
The shop uses Ultraflex Systems, Inc. media and Agfa Graphics’ Duratex Standard Mesh for printed fence graphics specifically because of price and quality.
Ultraflex offers UltraMesh Plus, an eight ounce coated polyester scrim mesh banner material. It allows 37 percent airflow through the banner. It is intended for buildings, stadiums, and fence wraps. It may be printed on one side using solvent, eco-solvent, screenprinting, latex, and UV inks using mesh kits. It is available with a PVC backer in 126- and 196-inch widths.
OAI uses EFI Matan 4QW, Matan iQ, and VUTEk UltraVu 5330 printers. Garcia says the shop has used the printers for over ten years. “We decided to purchase this brand over others based on performance and market reviews.” The Matan devices offer white ink printing capabilities, which is an added benefit especially when printing to windscreen material for fence graphics.
The NFL Demands Signage
OAI was approached by the National Football League (NFL) to increase profitability for televised events by creating a fence graphic for a total fan experience both inside and outside of each stadium. They requested bold and bright graphics to attract attention.
Graphics were printed on Agfa’s Duratex Standard Mesh, which is an eight ounce, lightweight mesh designed for windy areas. The mesh weave is intended to minimize wind resistance and allow air to pass through the material. It features a uniform pattern, tough tear resistant base, and can be grommeted or sewed. Garcia says the material was chosen for this job because of its wind flow and stability characteristics.
A total of 14,000 square feet of material was printed on the Matan printers. “We profiled the colors on the Matan and preferred the production speed,” shares Garcia. From job submittal to installation, it took seven business days to complete.
The final application was reinforced with hems and grommets and installed with zip ties. Garcia says the only challenge the shop experienced was receiving the artwork on time given the volume of printed graphics.
According to Garcia, “this job stands out because the shop designed, built, and produced all the graphics for a national account.” He says OAI continues to work with the NFL.
Print shops like OAI offer digitally printed fence graphics that are breathable and attractive. The material used in this application must be durable against wind and rain to ensure professional and appealing displays. These graphics provide marketing opportunities for construction sites, retail, sports arenas, and universities.
Aug2017, Digital Output