Reflecting on Quad/Graphics, Worldcolor Deal
Not long after I began writing for Printing Impressions, the late Harry Quadracci called me to comment on one of my columns. During what turned into a long conversation, where we seemed to like one another, he related how he left the old W.A. Krueger Co. to found Quad/Graphics using money he borrowed against his house. That phone call was about 1982 and he went on to tell me that he had hired the great Michael Porter, PhD, the Harvard professor, strategist and author of "Competitive Analysis" and "Competitive Strategy"—the two definitive books on marketing strategy. Porter would visit Harry periodically and they would just talk, you know, brainstorm. Now, they call it “thinking outside of the box.”
I was astounded. For a small printer, at that time, to spend big bucks to simply talk with Michael Porter—one of my heroes—was baffling. I guess it paid off, and this deal will result in a lot of happy shareholders.
Harris DeWese is the author of "Now Get Out There and Sell Something." He is chairman/CEO at Compass Capital Partners and an author of the annual "Compass Report," the definitive source of info regarding printing industry M&A activity. DeWese has completed 100-plus printing company transactions and is viewed as the preeminent deal maker in the industry. He specializes in investment banking, M&A, sales, marketing and management services to printers.