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Out of state printers make biggest impressions.

Out Of State Printers Make Biggest Impressions

But Some Locals Present Innovative Challenges

The three commercial printing companies doing the most dollar volume in Arkansas are based out of state. One is even based out of the country. Officials at the largest, a branch of the Swiss company Ringier America located in Jonesboro, won't disclose a precise Arkansas sales figure for competitive reasons. They will say only that overall sales for 1990 total $665 million and Arkansas sales exceed $60 million. But that's enough to put Ringier ahead of The Standard Register Co. of Fayetteville, which ranks second on our list with sales of $59 million for 1990.

Ringier bought the old W.A. Krueger Co. facility in Jonesboro about two years ago. Krueger was based in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Despite heavy competition, Arkansas printers are not standing still. One has acquired an out-of-state company that is twice its size. Little Rock Printing & Stationery, with 42 employees and sales of 3.9 million for 1990, owns PM Press in Dallas with 70 employees and revenues of $7.5 million for 1990.

Hall Printers & Stationers of Hot Springs has a branch in Arkadelphia that sells office supplies and furniture.

Diversified Graphics offers turnkey printing services. Clients can get design and typesetting services, negative work and four-color printing all in one stop. Diversified even networks with firms that provide support services to the printing industry such as mailing services.

Adjusting To Technology

New technology and competition during the last decade have caused commercial printers to acquire new equipment and adjust their services to meet the needs of a rapidly changing market. Here's what some of them had to say about changes to their industry:

* Since computers talk to each other, companies don't use receiving reports, invoices, etc., so there is not as much need for forms.

* There is an over capacity in the market. There is more equipment out there than product to print. The industry is growing at 10 to 15 percent while the market is growing at 5 percent.

* People are replacing old equipment with faster equipment and that's part of how our capacity has grown.

* Due to recent postal increases, advertisers have cut their direct mail budgets.

* Because of the recession, there is a national downturn in advertising and less demand for advertising materials.

* When the economy starts to slide, people push harder to sell; consequently, printers do better in an economic slowdown.

In spite of the many challenges facing their industry, most printers interviewed for this article were optimistic.

Walter Simpson of Twin City Printing & Litho summed it up best: "Success depends on whether you get the right flow of work."

PHOTO : OLDER BUT BETTER: Four of Arkansas' largest printing companies were established in the late 1800s but they employ the latest equipment and techniques.
COPYRIGHT 1991 Journal Publishing, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Arkansas Business Rankings
Author:Gibson, Carolyn
Publication:Arkansas Business
Date:Apr 15, 1991
Words:466
Previous Article:Family-run business still prospering after 71 years.
Next Article:Pioneer Electric Inc.
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