Southeastern: A World of Change, Growth

Standing (from the left): Mike McGuire, account executive; Don Mader, president and CEO; and Jason Leonard, director of wide-format imaging. Seated: Marty Harris, SEP Communications; and Joanie Lotze, marketing manager.

Southeastern employees ply their trade in the company’s all-Heidelberg pressroom.

A close inspection of museum signage at the Blue Water Editions innovation studio is performed.

HP Indigo gear highlights the digital division.

Southeastern rebranded to ensure that its employees are united in terms of corporate direction.

How They Roll(fed)

Southeastern operates in two primary product theaters: packaging (specifically labels) and commercial printing. It has a strong foothold producing rollfed beverage labels, of which it will churn out five billion this year. Mader maintains that it is essential, as an independent competitor in the packaging market, to have a singular focus in order to be a leader.

The company takes a different tact with the commercial end, constantly evolving to address client needs. Products range from marketing collateral, direct mail, brochures and publications for verticals that include manufacturers, utilities, health care, travel, nonprofits and education, to name a few. Recent equipment and business acquisitions have helped grow the company into trending areas such as wide-format, personalized URLs, variable data and digital storefronts (more on them later).

Life is good for Southeastern; so good, in fact, that in mid-January, Mader broke out the cake and champagne a year early to celebrate. The actual occasion was the rebranding of the company, from Southeastern Printing to Southeastern, with the tag line “Complexity Made Simple.” According to Mike McGuire, account executive, the move was a by-product of a cultural revolution that had been developing for the past couple of years.

“We wanted to change the thinking of the employees—get everybody on the same team, thinking the same way, strategizing the same way and possessing the same values,” McGuire notes. “Once we started establishing that, it lent itself to the rebranding. This seemed like the right time to do it because of the changes we were making internally. Business has changed and we’ve become more than just a printer.”

The changes that transpired at Southeastern in 2012 alone are staggering and do, indeed, change the makeup of this not-just-a-printing company. Leading the winds of change:

• A new Blue Water Editions gallery and creative wide-format printing studio debuted in Port Salerno, FL, in May. This gave Blue Water, a 19-year-old fine arts printing and graphics concern co-located with Southeastern, room to breathe and showcase the works of 15 artists featured there. Sharing the fine arts location is a creative wide-format imaging offering, which provides specialty products to complement its litho client base, notes Jason Leonard, director of wide-format imaging.

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