Going for growth
Moving from paid employment to the world of the self-employed can be a daunting prospect, but for Glenn Wrigley it has also meant the realisation of his ambition to move from the city to the Cornish coast.
Now, seven years following his life changing decision to re-locate and establish his own print company, Print-2-Media, Glenn is reaping the rewards of his entrepreneurship with the help of a DYSS X7-1624C digital cutting machine from AG/CAD.
Glenn relocated to Liskeard near Plymouth and started his business with the aid of a single Roland XC540 printer and just one customer, but by using both his extensive industry experience and the contact list he had compiled, the business soon began to blossom. Initially specialising in the production of outdoor signage for agricultural events in the South West, Print-2-Media soon progressed to the provision of signs and graphics for the shows’ exhibitors too and, in order to keep pace with its growing workload, it gradually acquired a series of Fuji, Roland and HP large format printers with a maximum print width of 1.5m by 3m and four employees.
Glenn remembered: “The business grew organically, with the diversity of our printer line-up enabling us to print onto all types of media and to produce everything from stickers and posters, through to point of sale materials and shop signage. However, since our location was restricting our growth ambitions I decided to employ a web designer and, as a result, over 60 percent of our business is now conducted on-line, via our website, something that has been transformative. Nowadays, only 20 percent of our work is locally sourced with the remaining 80 percent being placed by trade customers and re-sellers nationwide.”
Since the company’s workload includes the production of Foamex, Dibond and acrylic signage, it wasn’t long before it needed a more robust cutting solution than that provided by its vinyl cutting machine and accordingly, Glenn reviewed the various CNC cutting options on offer, before settling on a DYSS X7-1642C with K-Cut vision system and KASEMAKE software, which he purchased from AG/CAD last February.
The results have been astonishing, with the machine’s arrival immediately eliminating the company’s sub-contracting costs, while also reducing lead-times and improving product quality.
Glenn continued: “Previously, we were unable to cut precision shapes or forms and couldn’t cut Dibond or acrylic at all, but now we are able to produce mobile Dibond photo booths, something that would have previously been impossible. Similarly, the stickers that we produce in batches of 50 to 300, several times per week, which used to take five hours to cut by hand, are now completed on the DYSS in a mere 20 minutes, representing a time-saving of more than 15 hours.”
As Print-2-Media wanted to cut everything from Dibond and acrylic, through to corrugated cardboard, AG/CAD suggested it made use of the three tool station ‘Super Head’ that accommodates routing, knife, creasing and kiss cut tools, which are selected automatically without the need for manual intervention. This enables the router to create ‘location holes’ for the K-Cut Vision system if required, while the knife and creasing tools can be used to produce the corrugated boxes. The K-Cut registration system will pick up any pre-defined point and orientate the work according to the datum points, thus ensuring that every job is 100 percent accurate and free from operator error.
Whilst Glenn agreed that the K-Cut Vision software and Super-Head tooling station were primary factors in the DYSS machine’s favour, he was equally impressed by the machine’s build quality and the KASEMAKE CAD software suite. He observed: “The KASEMAKE software was another defining USP. It is developed in-house by AG/CAD and was fine tuned to meet our precise requirements, which included the design and production of our own packaging materials, something that enables us to both reduce costs and storage space. Furthermore, we can ensure that every box is the correct size for the end product and that we present our work in the best and most professional way possible.”
Print-2-Media has also been making excellent use of the in3Denvironment modelling software feature within KASEMAKE, which has enabled it to produce virtual exhibition stands for customers to approve. Glenn commented: “When customers can see either photo-realistic images or a walk-thru’ video of a stand concept they have a much clearer idea of how the finished job will look. As well as helping at proofing stage, this facility has actually also provided us with a great sales tool that has helped us to win new business.
However, the best advantage of all is the fact that Glenn estimates that since it acquired the DYSS, Print-2-Media has increased its monthly turnover by a staggering £3,000-£5,000!
He concluded: “The DYSS was a big but necessary investment, which has helped us to expand both our customer base and the type of work we do – since its installation our business has grown by 20 percent – which will help to ensure that the machine has a payback period of less than two years. Right from the start, AG/CAD was very receptive to our needs, and the excellent levels of service and support we have received, combined with the features if the DYSS, means that we wouldn’t look anywhere else if we need another machine in the future.”