Graph Expo Shines Spotlight On In-plants

Just two months away, Graph Expo is shaping up to be an in-plant manager’s dream. The country’s largest graphic arts trade show is putting a lot of emphasis on the in-plant market this year, with sessions, users’ groups and networking opportunities focused exclusively on in-plants.

“We believed the time was right to create a robust education track at Graph Expo to specifically address the needs of in-plant and corporate print centers,” explains Ralph Nappi, president of the Graphic Arts Show Co., which organizes the event. “Because these operations often cross segments, such as transactional print, packaging, mailing and fulfillment, and wide format, and our show brings them all together, we have a unique opportunity to provide for in-plants a variety of opportunities to get everything they need to be successful in the future at this year’s event.”

In a press release, GASC noted that some estimates place the number of in-plants as greater than the number of commercial print establishments, and they have significant purchasing power. A recent independent in-plant survey, GASC says, revealed that 78 percent of respondents said they would attend Graph Expo if there were strong in-plant education and segment-specific networking events. So that’s exactly what GASC is providing.

This year’s show will feature an expanded in-plant education track, with such intriguing session topics as:

  • Re-Branding Wizardry for In-plant Print Centers
  • Growth Strategies for Corporate/Education/In-Plant Print Centers
  • In-Plant Ingenuity: Building Your Company Inside Another
  • In-Plant Biz Development 101: ‘How-to’ Build Variable & Multi-Channel Offerings

One highlight will be a major panel discussion, coordinated by Rochester Software Associates (RSA), entitled “Empowered In-plants: Tell-All Success Stories from the Field.” Four in-plant managers will offer exclusive looks inside their operations and detail their success secrets. Participating will be:

  • Jimmy Friend, director of Printing and Distribution Solutions at the University of North Texas, winner of the 2012 In-Print Best of Show award.
  • Debbie Gallagher, senior operations analyst, Department of Administrative Services Publishing & Distribution Department for the State of Oregon.
  • Gene Voelker, manager of Supply Chain Business Services at Parkview Health, northeast Indiana’s largest healthcare provider.
  • Phil Larson, former director of AFPress and grafaccent at American Fidelity, now president of Shepherd Consulting OK.

The managers will also offer a frank look at what has been tried that did not work, their biggest challenges, budget dos and don’ts, and advice for other plants about how they can be successful. This session will be held on Monday, October 8, from 10:30-Noon. (For more information, visit RSA will also be holding its inaugural WebCRD Web-to-print user group during the show.

Additional Graph Expo sessions will cover topics of interest to in-plants, such as Lean Manufacturing, multi-channel offerings, social media strategies, color management, digital color presses, empowered leadership, cloud and mobile technologies, hybrid printing, growth niche markets and more.

In addition, the In-plant Printing and Mailing Association will be playing an active part at the show. The association is sponsoring an in-plant networking hub on the expo floor (booth 3461), where in-plants can mingle and compare notes from the show. IPMA will also hold certification exams on site. IPMA will offer a lunch and learn session (Room S102) on October 8, 12:00-1:30, covering Web-to-print, QR codes and more. InfoTrends’ Barb Pellow will moderate. Register and find more information on IPMA’s site, where you can also sign up for a free expo pass.

Graph Expo will take place October 7-10 at Chicago’s McCormick Place. For more information about the in-plant education track and other seminar sessions at Graph Expo, or to register for the show visit:

Bob has served as editor of In-plant Graphics since October of 1994. Prior to that he served for three years as managing editor of Printing Impressions, a commercial printing publication. Mr. Neubauer is very active in the U.S. in-plant industry. He attends all the major in-plant conferences and has visited more than 130 in-plant operations around the world. He has given presentations to numerous in-plant groups in the U.S., Canada and Australia, including the Association of College and University Printers and the In-plant Printing and Mailing Association. He also coordinates the annual In-Print contest, cosponsored by IPMA and In-plant Graphics.

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