Thinking ‘big’ sign of success for Global
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The entrance to Global Imaging’s WorkFlow Studio in Louisville was created using several printers and materials. The top one-third is a 15-foot wide banner made of Aberdeen direct fabric and printed on the PrinterEvolution Evo33 printer. The windows are covered with a perforated film made by Continental Graphix and printed on an HP L26500 Latex printer. The walkway was created using a nonslip material made by Asphalt Art and the HP L26500 Latex printer.
Global Imaging Inc. celebrated the grand opening of its WorkFlow Studio on July 12. The company can give demonstrations for the large-format printing equipment it sells, such as 10-foot wide printers, digital flatbed cutters, transfer presses for fabrics, a banner welding machine, and software and color-management technologies. Seen here is the Printer Evolution EVO 33.
One Louisville-based company knows what’s hot in the grand-format printing industry and for nearly 20 years has been connecting companies with the equipment they need to print what they want.
Global Imaging Inc. sells commercial, digital printers and accompanying products.
“We sell the printers and all the things that go along with the grand printer to make it work,” said Tara Lamb, co-founder and president of Global Imaging, such as laminators, ink, cutters and even the material on which large-format signs are printed. Global Imaging customers range from sign producers such as FastSigns International Inc. to product producers such as Pepsico Inc. (NYSE: PEP).
Lamb, along with her husband and business partner, Greg Lamb, started the company in 1995 in a 250-square-foot space in Boulder. Since then the company moved to Louisville and expanded. Global Imaging now employs 31 people and generated $15 million in revenue in 2011, Lamb said. In January the company signed a lease to double its space from 6,000 to 12,500 square feet at 2011 Cherry St., Suite 116, in the Colorado Technology Center.
The additional space houses a WorkFlow Studio. Global Imaging celebrated the grand opening of the studio with a grand opening celebration July 12. The company can give demonstrations for the large-format printing equipment it sells, such as 10-foot wide printers, digital flatbed cutters, transfer presses for fabrics, a banner welding machine, and software and color-management technologies.
James Kochevar publishes Sign @ Digital Graphics Magazine, a trade magazine for the sign and digital printing industry with a 27-year history and a circulation of 30,000.
“We are a nonbiased entity that reports on all things in the industry from how-to to product innovations ... anything that will help run their business smoother,” Kochevar said. He thinks Global Imaging’s workflow studio is a great idea.
“It’s an amazing opportunity,” Kochevar said. “It gives a shop owner the opportunity to come in and have a real hands-on experience with the equipment,” rather than visiting several different retail facilities or doing extensive online research.
Industry innovations, such as light-format printing, turned the industry on its ear, he said. High-quality images at a lower cost allow businesses to change signs more frequently and with less waste.
With customers spending from $10,000 to more than $1 million for the printers and ancillary equipment, a place to test things out is an investment Lamb believes will draw customers to Global Imaging. It’s the only such studio in the United States, Tara Lamb said.
“We have so much to show people,” she said. “Now they can come to one place and see it all.”
“They’ve dedicated a large portion of their shop in Louisville to this project,” he said. “I think it’s going to pay great dividends.”
It also fits the company philosophy of adding value to a customer’s business, Tara Lamb said. Matching the right equipment with the need gives customers the best bang for their buck. That’s a philosophy longtime customer Scott Snoyer appreciates.
“If they don’t have something that fits my needs, they won’t try to sell me something else,” said Snoyer, owner of Brand Imaging Group. The Tennessee-based company creates large-format graphics, architectural signs, fleet wraps and signs for special events, he said. It has worked with professional sports teams, movie studios and large retailers. Global Imaging printers come from a variety of well-known manufactures, Snoyer said, making finding a good match likely.
Louisville-based Omni Promotional Banners and Signs, part of Sport Star USA Inc., appreciates Global Imaging’s follow-up customer service. It purchased its first large-format digital print from Global Imaging, said Dave Skiffich, Omni Promotional general manager.
“You’re going to have hiccups with these big machines, and they’ve come through and helped us out on a number of occasions,” Skiffich said. His company produces signs, banners, flags, tents, and backdrops for clients. It often works in the sporting industry, with signs hung at the Ironman Triathlon and the Sea Otter Classic bike race, and planned to be displayed at the upcoming USA Pro Cycling Challenge.
Skiffich appreciates the attention to quality Global Imaging employees offer, too.
“They are concerned with your problems and are not going to give you the canned answers that some companies do,” he said.
Global Imaging typically provides installation and training on printers as well. It also manufactures a retrofit kit to update a specific older printer. The kit sells for $200,000 rather than the $600,000 a new printer can cost, Tara Lamb said.
The Lambs came from a photography background. Both worked at Mike’s Camera in Boulder. They embraced the transition to digital, based their business around the growing technology, and developed a real knack for teaching customers how to incorporate digital into their businesses.
“The secret to our success,” she said, “is reinventing ourselves and making sure we stay on the very, very cutting edge and at the forefront of our industry and then helping people integrate themselves in.”
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