John Bobbitt, Former CGX/Western Litho President, Named President of McCormick Armstrong
WICHITA, KS—January 21, 2015—After 20 years at the helm of McCormick Armstrong (McA)—one of the nation’s largest privately held printers—Chairman and CEO Jake Shaffer has hired John Bobbitt to take over the role as president of the company. Bobbitt will have day-to-day oversight of McA’s printing, direct mail, catalog, fulfillment, distribution, and other brand management operations. Shaffer will continue as chairman and CEO of McA, while devoting more of his time to its related companies: the agribusiness magazine High Plains Journal in Dodge City, KS, and On Point, a printer of specialty products and high-end coffee table books in Kansas City, KS.
Bobbitt brings to McA nearly 35 years of experience in printing, direct mail and political consulting. Prior to running his own political consulting firm in Houston, he served seven years as president of Media Solutions, a printing and fulfillment company. Additionally, he spent 24 years with the Consolidated Graphics (CGX) Western Litho plant in Houston, ultimately becoming president of the company.
"This is an exciting time for McCormick Armstrong, as well as for me, personally," Shaffer said. "All three of our companies are on the cusp of explosive growth. Finding a successor like John Bobbitt—someone who has run a highly profitable multi-million-dollar printing business for decades – lets me move away from the daily operations at McA with confidence. I know that both McA’s leadership and business plan are in absolutely capable hands. I’m eager to focus more attention to our other publishing and printing businesses and, perhaps, take a vacation for the first time in years."
McCormick Armstrong was founded in Wichita as McCormick Press in 1901, making it one of the oldest continuously operating companies in Kansas. McCormick Armstrong, High Plains Journal and On Point are all family owned entities.
"Jake’s integrity, loyalty and sense of commitment to the family business is one of the key reasons I came to Wichita," Bobbitt added. "Privately held companies operate with a value structure that lets them treat employees like family—and that breeds trust. You don’t see that in publicly held companies these days. Common sense values and trust shape our business philosophy and our customer relationships, and that makes McA exceptional in the industry today."
Another factor that drew him to Wichita, Bobbitt said, was the chance to participate in a community bouncing back from a recession.
"Coming from Houston, I understand how difficult it is to bounce back from an economic downturn," he noted. "I see a lot of vision in the Wichita community, and a let’s-get-it-done spirit. I want to be an active participant in a company and a community that is working together to rise above this recession and flourish once more."
Bobbitt says too many people are ringing the death knell for printing, given the explosion of the digital age. But, he affirms, print is very much alive and well, with billions of dollars being spent on print.
McA has full printing and in-house mailing capabilities, including a five-unit Goss M600 and prepress technology. The company holds a G7 quality certification and is an FSC-certified printer.
Being in the geographic center of the country, McA can print and deliver materials and anywhere in the country with minimal mailing time.
Bobbitt plans to expand the McA sales force across the country, all the while putting more emphasis on digital printing for local accounts.
"We have the best web press around, but we recognize that not everyone in south central Kansas needs huge print runs," Bobbitt noted. "With our digital system, we can be equally as efficient for smaller print runs. Variable printing that can be customized for each recipient is also hugely attractive to many local customers, and we’re going to be very competitive in that arena."
Source: McCormick Armstrong.