Printing Impressions

You will be automatically redirected to piworld in 20 seconds.
Skip this advertisement.

Advertisement
Open Enrollment | Subscribe to Printing Impressions HERE
Connect
Follow us on
Advertisement
 

Binding Matters

March 2000
BY T.J. TEDESCO


Different operating circumstances require different business strategies. For example, three trade binderies in three different states each have different plans and methods of doing business. Who's right? Maybe, they all are.

In today's rough and tumble graphic arts world, excellent performance is not optional. To successfully compete over the long haul, companies must consistently say what they do, and do what they say. Yesterday's recipe for success—service, quality and fair prices—is just the starting point. Carefully evaluating business factors, such as geographic location, customer attitudes toward outsourcing, management strengths and weaknesses, and company core competencies, is essential. Then, implementing the right game plan that capitalizes on real strategic advantages is where the rubber meets the road.

Bookbinding Specialist
Located in Woburn, MA, a Boston suburb, 45-year-old Seaboard Bindery specializes in three main postpress product lines: adhesive binding, mechanical binding and saddle stitching. Seaboard Bindery is a regional competitor that rarely reaches beyond the New England states, eastern New York, New Jersey and southeastern Canada.

Frank Shear, Seaboard's president, acknowledges readily that his company is a niche player serving the bookbinding needs of printers in the Northeast. Seaboard Bindery offers non-core services, such as folding, cutting, drilling and laminating, to support the company's bookbinding niche. The company will occasionally convert fold-only or laminate-only jobs, but this type of non-core business is not aggressively sought out.

In the Northeast, there are binding companies with broader product lines than Seaboard Bindery, but the market is large enough to accommodate both the specialists and the generalists. Shear believes that being first to market with new product offerings is a distinct competitive advantage. As proof, he cites these examples: Seaboard Bindery was the first New England bindery to use PUR glue—strong enough for difficult-to-bind products—and to license both Otabind and RepKover lay-flat adhesive binding methods, giving clients a lower-cost alternative to mechanical binding. These investments have given the company its adhesive binding "triple play."

Although perfect binding is still a core product for Seaboard Bindery, lay-flat and PUR adhesive binding methods now account for a large portion of the company's business.

In addition to adhesive binding, Seaboard's two other core processes are mechanical binding and saddle stitching. The company is committed to growing these markets and recently bought new collating equipment and an in-line, automatic-feed drilling unit to boost capacity.

Under One Roof
Half a continent away, in our nation's Heartland, lies rapidly growing, Des Moines, IA-based Finishbinders. Unlike Seaboard Bindery, Finishbinders doesn't compete in a large graphic arts community. Because of the vast distances between commercial centers, and the impracticality of shipping work-in-process too far, Finishbinders has chosen to offer an under-one-roof, buffet of services.


 

Companies Mentioned:

COMMENTS

Click here to leave a comment...
Comment *
Most Recent Comments: