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Happy 30th Anniversary!

Happy 30th Anniversary!

For three decades, Sign & Digital UK, which returns to Birmingham’s NEC on 28th-31st March, has been the country’s premier event for those working within the sign and display and, more recently, the wide format digital print sectors. 

This year, the show will be celebrating its 30th anniversary in some style and, with over 150 companies exhibiting, including several that are making their show debut, plus a selection of new and enhanced attractions, there will be lots for visitors to see and do.

 sign uk 2016 stand
sign uk 2016 stand2

The Business Theatre

Special show features will include the Business Theatre, which will host an extensive programme of free daily seminars, workshops and case studies, all of which are designed to help sign and print companies to identify new revenue opportunities that will enable them to expand and improve their product and service offering during the coming 12 months.

The seminars on offer will include More money, more customers, more focus’, which will explore how business owners can differentiate themselves in a competitive marketplace and add value for customers. Chaired by Colin Gilman,the Editor of Graphic Display World, expert panelists will include James Priest, Managing Director of Assured Systems and Tony Kenton, Strategy Specialist for It Has To Be Brilliant.

The ‘Where are the opportunities in wide format?’ session will discuss the current and future mix of applications available for those looking to forge a path in wide format printing. Combining real world insight and advice from experts working in the industry, current panelists include Ed Currer, Founder of Vinyl Impressions, Robert Long, Managing Director of Kingswood iOptus and Richard McCombe, Managing Director of Matic Media.  Barney Cox, the Editor of Digital Printer, will chair the session.

Opportunities for business growth and expansion will be further explored in the session Business Diversification: temporary pop-up and retail structures’. Run in association with the Shop and Display Equipment Association (SDEA), and chaired by the Association’s Director, Antony Behiels, the session will also field industry experts from Unibox and Tecna UK. It will examine how companies can benefit from this growing market by diversifying into the production of temporary or seasonal short- term retail structures and displays.

Another new seminar for 2017, ‘Business Diversification: soft signage’ will discuss how companies can enter this increasingly popular sector and will explore investment strategies, the use of existing equipment, floor space planning and the skills necessary for finishing. Presented by Grafenia, this session is ideal for businesses looking to understand the benefits of trade supply.

For those visitors seeking to grow and develop their businesses, the seminar entitled: A toolkit for growing your business’ and presented by Ed Currer, Founder, Vinyl Impression and Frazer Chesterman, Co-Founder, InPrint & FM Brooks, is a must-attend.

A session from Philips Lighting Intellectual Property on Wednesday 28th March will be useful for sign companies that make or sell illuminated signs that use LEDs, as they may, unwittingly,be making use of protected Intellectual Property in the form of patents.

David Catanach, the Director of the BSGA will return to present a seminar entitled Sign maintenance and planning regulation’, which will update visitors on the standards and regulations surrounding sign design and construction, as well as hosting a session detailing signmakers’ obligations under planning law.

Other seminars will include Accessing equipment to build your business – what are the options? hosted by Paragon Bank, Making the apprenticeship levy work for you’ presented by Charles Jarrold, Chief Executive of BPIF, Cover maintenance & service contract agreements’ from RolandCare, and ‘An investment in knowledge pays the best interest’, which will be presented by Joe Wigzell, Academy and Creative Centre Manager for Roland DG and provide an overview of the training options available for businesses.

As digital signage continues to take market share, a panel of experts, including Tech Resource and Michael Gietzen, Managing Director of the Identity Group, will debate Where physical meets digital’ and provide an insight into the opportunities for growth.

sign uk 2016 signmakers workshop

The Signmakers’ Workshop

The ever-popular Signmakers’ Workshop is also returning, and will feature practical demonstrations from expert signmaker Paul Hughes. These sessions will run each day of the show and will cover topics including the application of vinyls, vehicle liveries and wrapping, wall and floor graphics and the manufacture of signboards.

The Sign Trade Services Pavilion

In addition there will be two brand new features this year, the first of which was developed in response to 2016 customer feedback.The Sign Trade Services Pavilion is designed to showcase suppliers offering day-to-day items, including sign blanks and accessories, tool kits, fittings & fixings, built up letters and LED lighting.Participating exhibitors will include Archer Trade Signs,,Kunshan Yijiao Industrial Co., Latitude Mapping.  PowerPax Signmaking Tools, Signtrade Letters, and Welwyn Tool Group.

sign uk 2016

 The Creative Theatre

The second new feature is the Creative Theatre, where speakers will cover a range of topics, ranging from ‘Exploring interior décor’ and ‘Future materials: Creative, Cool and Commercial’,to ‘Creating effective advertising and branding opportunities with wrapping’and Understanding the benefits of variable data printing’.

Visitors that have an interest in the retail sector will be interested in two seminars that specifically relate to this area of operation.  The first is  ‘Creative retail sign solutions’, which will explore how trends can be translated into cutting edge branding and design to maximise the customer experience and feature Steve Spackman of Sign 2000, Michael Geitzen, Managing Director of Identity Signage & Printing and David Fagg of John Anthony Signs, while Katie Waters, Head Designer at, will present ‘Latest trends: understanding the customer expectations and experience in retail’and examine some of the latest trends influencing creative solutions.

Other highlights will include theDo’s and don’ts of colour management’, which will be hosted by Jan Edgecombe, Managing Director of Revolution Digital and Giles Bristow, Digital Support Manager Antalis, and will seek to outline the importance of colour management, lighting, RIP profiles, calibrating and profiling amonitor.

Two sessions dedicated to wayfinding. Sian Kelly, Chair of the Sign Design Society, will present a seminar entitled ‘Understanding the art and science of wayfinding’, before joining a quartet of speakers who will discuss‘Innovation in directional and wayfinding signage’, and will use a variety of case studies to illustrate how sign design and wayfinding works in practice.

Finally,Creative solutions with digital (LED) signage’ will explore the latest creative and technological approaches to digital signage, and is thus perfect for those signmakersthat are looking to diversify their services into this area. Speakers will include Josh Bunce, CEO of Inurface Media,Danny Adamson, Group Managing Director of Stocksigns and David Fagg, Sales & Marketing Director for John Anthony Signs.

The Adobe Theatre

That evergreen favourite, the Adobe Theatre will be back with five daily sessions that will include ‘Creative Cloud Mission Control’, which will be highlighting the functions of the Bridge CC; Making Colour Simple, which will demonstrate the efficacy of the Adobe Creative Suite; ‘Ask Adobe’, an interactive session designed to enable attendees to discover many of Photoshop CC’s most useful new creative features; ‘Two are better than one’, which will cover InDesign CC and Illustrator CC and lastly, ‘Teach me Video’, which will explain how users can make effective promotional videos with Adobe Premier Pro CC.

The Corel Theatre

That other regular crowd pleaser, the Corel Theatre, will also be making a welcome return to the show and will be presenting a series of workshops, that will kick off each day with  ‘CorelDraw Graphics Suite – An overview of new features’, which will illustrate how this software provides users with everything they need to express their creativity, whilst also offering new tips, tools and techniques. This will be followed by ‘Variable Data Printing withCorelDRAW’,a tutorial on the creation of a CDR file that’s suitable for data printing and ‘Wilcom DecoStudio with CorelDRAW Graphics Suite’, which explains how users in the apparel, promotional items and embroidery sectors can use its to visualise and design garment printing, embroidery and appliqué and finally,CorelDRAWSurgery , which provides tailored advice for particular projects.

signlab theatre

The SignLab Theatre

Presented by CADlink Technology, which has been developing specific software solutions for large format design and production for over 25 years, this series of seminars, which runs through the full three days of the show, is designed to help SignLab users to achieve the best results from their software.

The seminars include ‘Getting to know SignLab’, which highlights the package’s key features; ‘Maximising Print, Print and Cut workflows in SignLab and Digital Factory’, which will cover the software’s new features, including automated contour cutting, PDF underbase, step and repeat, job colour replacement and easy colour adjustments;’SignLab v10 Highlights’, which reviews the key features in the latest release; SignLab speciality packages’, which are designed for use with the ‘in the box’ RIP software of Roland and Mimaki printers and ‘SignLab Tips and Tricks’, which offers advice on useful shortcuts and tool usage.

Sign & Digital UK 2017 takes place at the NEC, Birmingham on 28th-30th March 2017 and is free to attend for visitors.For further information on all aspects of the show visit:

TrueVIS SG-540

Win the TrueVIS SG-540  

Roland DG is inviting visitors to its stand (Stand H30) to enter a competition that offers them the chance to win a new TrueVIS SG-540, the latest model in Roland DG’s series of TrueVIS Print & Cut devices.

Visitors will be able to enter the competition by completing one simple sentence: ‘With a TrueVIS SG-540, the future of my business would start here because…’. The most inspirational and enthusiastic entries will be included in a final draw, with the winner announced after the show.


One lucky entrant will win the TrueVIS SG-540 with full installation and on-site training carried out by a member of the Roland DG team. The machine will also come equipped with a one-year RolandCare warranty to offer ultimate peace of mind, plus a choice of two, one-day courses offered by the popular Roland DG Academy. With the full package worth over £12,000, the SG-540 is sure to bring both profitability and vibrant print quality to the lucky winner!

The TrueVIS SG series, the latest generation of Roland DG’s integrated Print & Cut devices, delivers an increase in productivity of up to 60 percent, compared to previous models. Offering economical and high-quality printing in vibrant CMYK TrueVIS Ink, the SG series is the ideal way to build a versatile business.

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