PUBLICATION PRINTING OUTLOOK --Challenging Issues
"These actions have been taken in response to the prolonged downturn in advertising spending, which has driven lower page counts and created excess capacity at Cadmus and throughout the industry," says Bruce V. Thomas, president and CEO. "We decided that we cannot wait for conditions to improve and we chose not to chase less attractive volume with even lower prices. We believe that, in this market, the responsible decision is to rationalize capacity and to redeploy assets and resources into the STM (scientific, technical and medical) journal and other markets where we see growth."
On the positive side, the company is still investing in the market. It recently announced the completion of a multi-year project to consolidate the organization's periodical back-copy storage and fulfillment operations into a single 200,000-square-foot site in Hurlock, MD.
This secure, climate-controlled facility is said to currently serve approximately 160 publishers representing 1,200 titles with more than 12 million copies in inventory. A Web-based order entry and inventory access system is also in development.
"We are seeing a strong trend on the part of publishers to outsource back-copy storage and fulfillment services to reduce their capital investment and administrative overhead while, at the same time, responding more quickly to their subscribers, members and customers," Thomas says.
While the top executives of these leading publication printers may have similarly meager expectations for the market outlook in 2003, each of their companies is finding opportunities by getting to know the needs of its customers.
Tailor Made for Growth
Publication printers looking for a growth opportunity might want to explore the market for custom magazine production services. Consider these market statistics provided by the Custom Publishing Council (CPC) in New York City:
* Last year, 13.2 percent of the average corporate marketing budget was spent on custom publishing, up from 11.1 percent the prior year. Forty percent of companies plan to spend more on custom publishing next year.