Quad/Graphics Shuts Down Atlanta, Dickson, TN, Plants
SUSSEX, WI—Quad/Graphics revealed that it is closing its direct mail facility on McCall Drive in Atlanta on or before Feb. 1 and will shutter its Dickson, TN, retail insert plant on or before March 15. Both moves were announced by the printer in letters sent out to suppliers.
In one letter, David Blais, executive vice president of global procurement and platform strategy, told suppliers that the Atlanta facility's presses were in need of "significant, costly upgrades to remain productive and competitive." The plant itself carries an expensive lease, is 50 years old and is much too big for Quad/Graphics' purposes, he added.
Also, given that Quad's commingling capabilities are concentrated in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, it didn't fit into the company's geographic scheme. Work being done in Atlanta transitioned to the company's other direct mail facilities, according to Claire Ho, Quad's director of corporate communications.
The decision is not a reflection of the company's direct mail fortunes. Ho points out that Quad/Graphics has invested nearly $70 million in bolstering its direct mail platform during the past four years and will invest in additional platform enhancements this year.
The loss of Gannett's USA Weekend supplement and a reduction in the circulation of Parade magazine were among the variables that factored into Quad's decision to end operations at Dickson, TN. Those two publications represented about one-third of the plant's total volume.
Blais said that Gannett's decision to cease publication of USA Weekend effective with the Dec. 28, 2014, issue was unexpected.
"Sunday magazines represent a large percentage of the Dickson plant's total volume and, after careful consideration, we have determined there is no way to replace this lost work," Blais wrote. "Therefore, it does not make sense to continue operating the Dickson plant."
The Atlanta plant closure will impact 100 employees while the Dickson closure will leave about 115 people out of work. Ho said that employees will be given the opportunity to transfer to other facilities within the company's chain.