Industry Coalition and HP Meet to Address MarketSplash Program

DES PLAINES, IL—May 11, 2009—The Graphics Communications Coalition for Open Competition announced that, based on productive meetings with key Hewlett Packard (HP) executives, HP has agreed to reconsider aspects of the implementation of its new MarketSplash® program, an online resource for small businesses including marketing materials, products, and design services.

The Graphics Communications Coalition for Open Competition includes representatives from franchise printing groups and industry trade associations NAQP, the National Association of Quick Printers, and NAPL, the National Association for Printing Leadership. The group was formed several years ago to protect a level, competitive playing field on behalf of both independent and franchise printing companies of all sizes.

Members of the coalition met recently with HP executives at their offices in San Diego to express their concerns about HP’s recently announced MarketSplash® program. The focus of the meeting was that MarketSplash® was being executed in a way that interfered with printers’ relationships with their customers. During the meeting, HP and the group discussed opportunities to work more effectively together, grow digital market opportunities and reconsider how MarketSplash® could be implemented. HP accepted the group’s input and agreed to revaluate their go-to-market strategy so that it continues to pursue its goal of enabling digital print while supporting its print service provider industry partners. HP committed to communicating their go forward strategy in mid May.

Coalition attendees at the meeting were:

• Carl Gerhardt, Allegra Network, Inc.- representing their Allegra Print& Imaging, American Speedy Printing, Insty Prints and Signs Now franchisees

• Gary Korn, AlphaGraphics, Inc.

• Richard Lowe, Franchise Services Inc. – representing their Sir Speedy, PIP and Signal Graphics franchisees

• Michael Jutt, Minuteman Press International, Inc. – representing Minuteman Press, Sign-A-Rama and EmbroidMe franchisees

• Steve Johnson – representing NAQP and NAPL members

Other members of the coalition include Joseph Truncale of the National Association for Printing Leadership (NAPL) and Robert Metztger of the International Center for Entrepreneurial Development (ICED).

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