Aaron Smith

AS AN economically unstable 2008 gives way to a poten- tially more tumultuous 2009, printers from the Sunshine State to Washington State are tightening their belts, digging in and preparing for the worst. Even the firms that forged through the mess and found success, including those named as 2008 Fast-Track Firms, are hoping for a better new year.

by chris bauer Some might not give a printing company launched in 1910 by a man with no arms much of a chance to succeed. Yet that is just how Fort Worth, TX-based Branch-Smith Printing got its start—and the company continues to keep a strong hold on its loyal customers and its own rigorous standards of performance and quality. Branch-Smith founder Aaron Smith managed to do what some would call impossible—including writing and typing with his toes and starting a successful printing business.David BranchAlthough company founder Aaron Smith was born with no arms, he learned to write and type with his toes and worked

FORT WORTH, TX—Branch-Smith Inc. recently completed a expansion, adding more than $2 million in equipment. The move is expected to double sales in its Printing Division by the end of the year 2000. During the first half of 1999, Branch-Smith has reconfigured its printing plant and created what officials say are more efficient work processes. Newly installed equipment includes an eight-color Heidelberg press and new CTP prepress equipment. David Branch, Branch-Smith's chairman and CEO, notes, "We are excited that our Printing Division's market focus on bound products has created such success and demand. These enhancements will enable us to improve our response to current

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