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Daniels Printing--Passing the Torch

February 1999
Daniels Printing communicates—and flourishes—without limits, generation after generation.

By Erik Cagle

FORGET ABOUT Fenway Park and the Red Sox, the Patriots and Cheers, or even the Kennedy clan, for that matter. No, to find a truly enduring institution in the state of Massachusetts, one needs to look at one of its most successful, long-running businesses.

Long before anyone had ever heard of the Babe Ruth Curse or Frasier Crane, there was Abraham Daniels. And while community staples come and go, the name Daniels (three generations after Abraham) and its corresponding reputation remain a fixture in commercial printing.

Armed with a new logo, Daniels Printing is entering the new millennium with a new mantra as well: "Communicate Without Limits—Anyone, Anywhere, Anytime, Any Way." A fitting philosophy for the 119-year-old company and a sign of the times, as this printer's role continues to evolve into one of an information and communications provider.

The family torch is now being carried by Grover Daniels II, the president and CEO—and the founder's great-grandson.

"Because we've been in the business since 1880, it has given us the opportunity to watch our customers' needs change over time," Daniels says of his company, which realized $67 million in sales for 1998. "We would have been blind not to embrace the digital age. We have invested and made some very good decisions in adding products and services to our core business that we think are going to evolve over time.

"Communicate without limits . . . Our corporate mantra is to deliver that message to our customers and to the industry as a whole," he adds. "Our industry has an obligation to take a leadership position in enabling customers to communicate without limits. If we don't, we will be outmaneuvered and outsold by other, possibly undercapitalized, companies which might convince customers that it's better to deal with them than their printer. Printers, in general, have an obligation to communicate this to their customers to truly win the market battle over who should manage and deliver customers' content. At Daniels Printing, we're in a position to do that."

Daniels Printing has been winning the market battle for more than a century. In 1880, Abraham Daniels opened a printing business next to Jacob Wirth's, one of Boston's oldest restaurants. He had spent his early years leading a goat cart throughout the city, conducting door-to-door sales and deliveries of what he had printed the previous night. He slept when he could, mainly on weekends.
 

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