PRINT 09: Fast Presses, Slow Show
TO BE FAIR, the sorry state of the economy made it almost impossible for PRINT 09 to be a rousing success. Show floor traffic was so slow on the opening day (Friday), it was speculated that someone forgot to flip the sign in the front window at McCormick Place from "closed" to "open for business." And one had to question the logic of conducting a long, weekend-wraparound show on the first week of pro football season, when no one (it was presumed) would be coming to Chicago, let alone spending.
The truth of the final analysis pertaining to PRINT 09—as any adept fence walker will tell you—is somewhere in between. And, as any statistician will try to explain, if you have one foot in a bucket of ice and the other in a raging fire...on average, you should be comfortable. Ah, the middle ground can be a dangerous piece of real estate to choose.
Truth of the matter is, some of the 680 exhibitors' booths were hopping on Monday and Tuesday (one exhibitor even reported success on Friday). One vendor told of selling two machines off the floor, and not caring what happened the rest of the show. Yet there were other smaller booths in both the North and South halls that were colder than Soldier Field in December. Overall, more than 18,000 print professionals from 94 countries attended the show.
So was PRINT 09 a success, even giving it a partial pass for being in the wrong economy at the wrong time? In fairness to the promoter, Graphic Arts Show Co. (GASC), the show must go on, even in the worst of circumstances. GASC certainly did its part in offering incentives for vendors to bring heavy equipment and in trying to attract visitors through a personalized marketing campaign targeted at specific market segments. Outside of dumping the Friday opener, there was probably not much that could have been done to make the event substantially better.
- Agfa Graphics
- Canon U.S.A.
- Eastman Kodak Co.
- EFI, Jetrion Industrial Inkjet Systems
- Epson America
- Fujifilm Graphic Systems U.S.A.
- GTI Graphic Technology
- InfoPrint Solutions
- Mitsubishi Lithographic Presses U.S.A.
- Océ North America, Production Printing Systems
- Presstek Inc.
- Ricoh Corp.
- Xerox Corp.
Bob has served as editor of In-plant Impressions since October of 1994. Prior to that he served for three years as managing editor of Printing Impressions, a commercial printing publication. Mr. Neubauer is very active in the U.S. in-plant industry. He attends all the major in-plant conferences and has visited nearly 170 in-plant operations around the world. He has given presentations to numerous in-plant groups in the U.S., Canada and Australia, including the Association of College and University Printers and the In-plant Printing and Mailing Association. He also coordinates the annual In-Print contest, co-sponsored by IPMA and In-plant Impressions.