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Mohawk Launches Reinvention Plan, Streamlining Paper Lines

April 10, 2012
COHOES, NY—April 10, 2012–At launch events held in New York over the last three weeks for customers and employees, Mohawk Fine Papers revealed its blueprint to transform its premium paper business to thrive in today’s digital world. In his presentations, Thomas D. O’Connor Jr., Mohawk chairman and CEO, outlined his vision for the future.

“Everywhere you read that print is declining, but the opportunities with the new digital technologies, or with what I would call ‘the new generation of print’, are great,” O’Connor said. “Technology disrupts, recessions clarify, and successful companies reinvent. That’s what we're doing right now.”

The New Mohawk: a Vision for the Future

Mohawk will focus its manufacturing exclusively on high-margin papers and products that will bring distinct value to the new generation of print customers, a unique positioning in an industry historically driven by volume and capacity.

The company will also develop strategic acquisitions and partnerships that successfully leverage its expertise and operational excellence.

Mohawk will continue to move closer to the end-customer across all business segments.

In discussing Mohawk’s progress over the last 24 months, O’Connor noted:

• Mohawk’s acquisition of Bravo in 2011. The digital specialty substrates business, he reported, offers significant worldwide potential.

• Last year, Mohawk created and launched an envelope business. In the past, O’Connor said, Mohawk relied exclusively on converters to produce envelopes made with its papers.

“Now, we’re making envelopes at the rate of 30 million per month,” he said. O’Connor explained that Mohawk is now better able to service its customers, fill an unmet need in the marketplace, and achieve substantially higher operating margins.

• In the consumer marketplace, O’Connor pointed to Pinhole Press, Mohawk's site for photo products launched in 2010. Pinhole products have been featured in consumer outlets such as Real Simple and Martha Stewart Living. This business, he noted, took 7,000 orders in the last six weeks of 2012. Pinhole Pro, a related offering to the professional photography community, was launched last month.

• O’Connor said Mohawk will continue to seek strategic partnerships with companies like business card company Moo.com, which differentiates its products with unique substrates like proprietary Moo Luxe. He also shared the example of Blurb.com, which now offers a high-end product line requested by its customers and advertises the use of Mohawk's legendary Superfine and ProPhoto papers to help sell its products.
 

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