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June 13, 2024

Bennett Graphics’ Commitment to Growth

Bennett Graphics’ Commitment to Growth
# Digital Printing
# Direct Mail
# Executives
# Flexible Packaging
# HP PageWide
# Innovation
# Labels & Packaging
# Large Format
# Leadership
# Leading visionaries
# Operations
# Packaging
# Publishing
# Team/Culture
# Technology
# Transformation

“Can it be done?” David Bennett and his team love asking that question, and their continual push to innovate has helped the trailblazing company thrive.

Bennett Graphics’ Commitment to Growth

At Bennett Graphics, the best ideas and projects often start with thought-provoking questions from clients such as, “What if …?” and, “Can it be done?” The company’s impressive team members are fueled by turning those questions into empowering solutions for clients.

Inside the firm’s headquarters in Tucker, GA, USA, President David Bennett has asked himself the same kind of questions about Bennett Graphics for more than 40 years: How can we best use our talent, technology and tenacity to help clients thrive? What benefits might new technology bring? How can we all rethink and reimagine the power of print?

David’s continual push for introspection and innovation has guided Bennett Graphics to impressive advancement and success. Every day, his team transforms ideas into reality, giving a wide variety of clients the results they envision.

An Extension of Their Customers’ Brands

Bennett Graphics was founded in 1968 as Bennett Brother’s Printing, and from the get-go, collaboration and curiosity have part of the company’s DNA. Employees are encouraged to experiment and view themselves as part of the creative process — to “test and see,” as David likes to say, and figure out ways to help clients perform better.

That pioneering, first-mover mindset has enabled Bennett Graphics to push technology limits and consistently bring new solutions to the marketplace, including digital print. The first production-model HP Indigo 10000 Digital Press in the world was installed at Bennett Graphics in 2013.

Today, the company is a recognized leader in digital, offset, large-format, UV inkjet and latex printing, but its value extends far beyond production.

For marketing executives, in-house creatives, agencies and others who value quick responses about new concepts, Bennett Graphics offers research, rapid estimation and ideation. For clients wondering about the possibilities for direct mail campaigns or odd product dimensions, the company offers design, prototyping and pilot programs. For marketers thinking about tactile features or foil, Bennett Graphics has a branded line of enhancements. Need to convey a story at the point of purchase through labels or flexible packaging? It’s one of the company’s specialties. Want every asset, image, finished good and data report at your fingertips? Bennett Graphics connects clients to that intelligence 24/7.

Investing in Production Inkjet: ‘A Big Step for Us’

“We’re always looking for ways to differentiate ourselves from the competition,” said David, who’s also chair of Dscoop’s global board.

Bennett Graphics’ 2023 investment in the HP PageWide Advantage 2200 Press is no exception. The decision to acquire the state-of-the-art press was driven by a desire to create a significant competitive edge and to explore new market opportunities.

“It was a big step for us,” David says. It’s the company’s first production inkjet press.

“When we initially moved into digital printing with Indigo presses a decade ago, we saw an opportunity to be more responsive to our clients while also improving our margins compared to traditional offset printing,” David says. “However, as digital printing has become more commoditized, we needed a new avenue to maintain our edge.”

The HP PageWide Advantage 2200 Press excels at handling lightweight stocks and running at high speeds, making it ideal for large-scale projects that require quick turnaround times. The press has increased Bennett Graphics’ capacity for growing direct mail work and high-quality publications.

“We’re not quite doing one-off books, but we might handle a hundred different SKUs in a day,” David said. “Because we can run everything in-line and finish it in one step, it’s incredibly efficient. Plus, paper for the web press is significantly cheaper than for the Indigo, and we don’t need to buy treated papers.”

Most customers are “platform agnostic,” David said during a panel at an HP event held last year in Corvallis, OR, USA (pictured below). “They just want to know their project is on time, looking good and on budget.” PageWide technology, he told the audience, is “allowing us to have different conversations with the clients we have, and to go to new clients that we never would have had the opportunity with before.”

Last week at drupa, HP announced that PageWide customers have printed an astonishing one trillion pages in just 15 years. The HP PageWide Advantage 2200 Press was one of seven presses to win an award at the quadrennial event in Germany, and it also won a Printing United Alliance 2023 Pinnacle Award for Technology.

The PageWide is allowing us to have different conversations with the clients we have, and to go to new clients that we would never have had the opportunity with before.”

Upgrading the Team for Maximum Impact

Recognizing that the introduction of advanced technology would necessitate a shift in operations, David also made significant changes to the company’s team structure.

He hired Richard Hawes as the new Vice President of Operations, bringing in his extensive experience with inkjet web presses. This expertise is crucial for managing the complexities of roll-based printing and ensuring seamless integration with the company’s existing systems, David says.

“Printing on rolls is a lot different than printing on sheets,” he says. “The finishing part dictates everything going backwards. We didn’t have the expertise in-house, so we brought in Richard, who has extensive experience in this area.”

Additionally, Bennett Graphics upgraded its data department and hired a new Vice President of Sales, Scott Ford, who has a strong background in direct mail. This move was also strategic, as direct mail represents a significant growth area for the company because of its higher margins and new revenue streams.

Looking Ahead and Embracing New Opportunities

David is optimistic about the future and the potential that the HP PageWide Advantage 2200 Press brings to Bennett Graphics. “There’s a window of probably five to seven years before this technology becomes more commoditized,” he said. “We’re aiming to make the most of it during this period by offering unique products and maintaining our competitive edge.”

His vision is clear: to leverage the full capabilities of the new press to drive business growth and set new standards in the industry. By continually investing in cutting-edge technology and upgrading the skills of his team, he’s positioning the company for long-term growth.

"Can it be done?"

David and his team will keep asking that question, constantly exploring new possibilities. “We’re always looking for the next thing that allows us to stay ahead,” he says.



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