Archive for March, 2011

  • Finsbury Green grabs Vic government print contract

    Major win for environmental printer, Finsbury Green, which has entered into a long-term Enterprise Print Management contract with the Victorian Government.

    In order to deliver a fully independent solution, Finsbury Green’s print operations will not be included in the Victorian Government print panel. This commitment ensures total independence throughout the print procurement process and Finsbury Green encourages companies that wish to discuss supply opportunities to make contact as soon as possible.

    According to CEO, Peter Orel, (pictured) Victorian Government print buyers will have direct access to Finsbury Green’s online procurement application sourceit, which allows print buyers to engage directly with suppliers throughout the RFQ process and to play an active role in supplier selection and decision making.

    “We are delighted to add the Victorian Government to our growing list of clients and look forward to working together with the respective departments as well as their incumbent suppliers and agencies to implement our solution,” he said.
    “Given their departmental structure, each with individual and sometimes complex needs, our solution is a great example of the flexibility, independence and value that Finsbury Green can deliver to clients. This is achieved by consolidating and streamlining print related processes, while at the same time, allowing complete transparency to both client and supplier throughout the print procurement process.”

  • Industry legal wrangle: Beaver Press versus CPI

    Beaver Press takes CPI back to the Supreme Court tomorrow.

    Following on from last Thursday’s hearing, which was quickly adjourned, the case follows on from Beaver Press’ demise last year. Robert Francis was managing director of the company, and is one of the plaintiffs in the case against CPI. When contacted by Print21, Francis declined to comment on the nature of the case that revolves around the security of the extended credit of CPI to Beaver Press.

    It has been a challenging time for Francis, who was also involved with Goodcrowd, which this month entered into liquidation on the same day that the business was sold to Goodcrowd Integrated Communication. According to a spokesperson for CRS Warner Kugel, which is handling the liquidation, personal health problems, reduced sales margins and high debts were behind Goodcrowd’s fall.


  • Speak up together on carbon tax says innovation minister

    The need for the printing industry to speak as a single voice on government initiatives, including the Carbon Tax, was underscored at a recent meeting with the Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Senator Kim Carr.

    This was one of the Minister’s key messages at last week’s meeting of the Printing Industry Working Group (PIWG) held in Parliament House, Canberra. Printing industry representatives included PIWG Chairman, Scot Telfer, Printing Industries CEO Philip Andersen and national manager for policy and government affairs, Hagop Tchamkertenian.

    Telfer said that one of the Minister’s key messages was that the PIWG must use its multi-sectoral membership to draw together industry’s views about Government initiatives that may impact on the printing industry.

    “We welcome the Minister’s encouragement and will continue to represent the industry on major issues including the current carbon tax debate,” he said.

    During the meeting the PIWG outlined to the Minister its future work plan which includes:

    1. Development of a submission regarding the impact of Carbon Pricing on the printing industry.

    2. Developing tools to assist the industry to transition into the future.

    3. Developing information and tools that allows consumers to make informed choices when deciding between printed and electronic communication.

    4. Understanding the printing industry workforce and the identification of the workforce it needs in the future in response to a rapidly changing business environment.

    The Printing Industry Working Group has membership across the industry and includes the Printing Industries Association of Australia and Australian Manufacturer Workers Union. It was established by Senator Carr to be a vehicle for industry to bring forward issues of mutual interest to Government and industry.

    “As an industry it is important that we take this valuable opportunity to use the PIWG as a way of having our voice heard in a systematic, cohesive way,” Telfer said.

    For further information about the PIWG and its work, please contact Scott Telfer on 0413 382 528, Hagop Tchamkertenian or the Secretariat on 02 6213 6513 or email:


  • Rough road ahead for NSW printers

    The harsh reality of business conditions facing New South Wales printers was brought home last night at the Printing Industry Forum.

    First speaker, Stephen Michell of HLB Mann Judd pulled no punches in declaring that “your industry is in decline.” This statement set the tone for much of the evening as he listed the failure of well-known printers such as Scott Printing, Quality Print Group and Litho Print and also confirmed the fears regarding the advent of online communication and media.

    “The demand for printed material in the information and media sectors will come under pressure from online substitutes,” Michell said.

    Looking ahead, he predicted that small-to-medium-sized businesses will form the “second wave” of business failures. “New South Wales is going through a major clean out as I see it,” he said. “A lot of manufacturing is being cleaned out and those small businesses that have been struggling on for years are falling over.”

    Pictured: Telling it how it is (l-r) Paul Richardson, Stephen Michell, Tony Kabrovski, Mark Wilton, Peter Carrigan and Steve Crowe.

    If it all sounds too grim then Mark Wilton, industry consultant and manager of DES’ Pantone range consoled the audience during a panel with the news that compared to North America and Japan “we were lucky here.”

    Audience members often proved reluctant to divulge their own experiences. When moderator, Steve Crowe asked who had raised their prices recently, Kerim El Gabaili of Prografica was the only one who dared raise his hand.

    Fellow speaker, Paul Richardson of Lindsay Yates Group, a company which has undergone a massive transformation from a traditional printer to offering an array of services does not believe that prices will go up. Like Michell, he also gave a sobering prediction for the industry.

    “This year, I was optimistic about a strong year, but now I think it will be fairly lean all year through,” he said. “Business needs to re-jig to cope.”


  • Get smart at Schmart Marketing conference

    The Schmart Marketing Conference aims to impart marketing smarts from how to deliver the right message to the right person at the right time through to unleashing the power of Australia’s passion for social media.

    The inaugural Conference, which takes place in Melbourne on April 4 and in Sydney on April 6 will bring together a host of international and national experts to provide best practice and insight on multi-channel marketing.

    Graham Plant, executive general manager, PMP Limited said that the conference aims to demonstrate from those who know, the best way to integrate channels with compelling content.

    “Everyone’s familiar with offline and online marketing and exploring social media, the real power comes from integration of channels and consistency of message; using the right channel and the right message to the right customer,” said Plant.

    Speakers include: Jeffrey W. Hayzlett, celebrity CMO and author of The Mirror Test; Janine Allis, founder and director, Boost Juice Bars; Russel Howcroft, group CEO ANZ, Y&R Brands (Melbourne only); Todd Sampson, CEO of LEO BURNETT (Sydney only) and Amber McArthur, new media author, TV host and strategist.


  • HP hands Scitex distributorship to Alloys

    HP appoints the distributorship of its HP Scitex commercial printers and consumables to Alloys.

    CPI still maintains its distributorship for the industrail range for machines and inks as well as being a re-seller for commercial inks and machines after HP last year announced that it would take direct responsibility for the service and support functions for the industrial range, enabling CPI to focus solely on providing sales and marketing solutions to its customer base. Now, Alloys has been chosen as distributor for HP’s Scitex commercial printers, inks and medias and HP Designjet consumables.

    According to Shane Lucas, director of HP Graphic Arts South Pacific, the company was chosen for its commitment to HP. “Alloys has been very positive and shown very strong commitment to HP and our graphics portfolio through the process and I feel extremely pleased with the outcome,” he said.

    CEO of Alloys, Paul Harman, said that the deal will also mean hiring three new staff to service the market. “We will be applying all of our non-traditional distribution methodology to selling and supporting the product with the channel and will give this line the sort of specialist attention it requires. This includes appointing three further staff to address the aspects of this market.  We believe we will expand the number of opportunities that HP can be involved in with this product line," he added.


  • Local Canon crew get technical at Asia Pacific Cup

    Four technicians from Canon Australia and New Zealand will fly to Shanghai to compete for the title of Canon’s top technician at the upcoming Asia Pacific (APAC) Cup.

    Australian technicians Daniel Leong from Queensland, Paul O’Brien from New South Wales, David Newing from Victoria and Kiwi Ross Bredesen from Hamilton will participate in a series of practical and theoretical tests against other leading from China, Japan, Singapore and Korea.
    “The APAC Cup is like MasterChef for Canon technicians, but instead of replicating the snow egg, they’re troubleshooting business imaging equipment – it’s highly skilled, very competitive and a surprisingly interesting spectator sport,” said Peter Love, senior general manager services and support.
    “These guys eat paper jams for breakfast. It’s a way that Canon can demonstrate its market leading customer service and a way to provide our technicians with the opportunity to interact with colleagues from other parts of the world.”

    The four technicians from Canon Oceania were selected following a five-round competition based on both theory and practical tests on Canon business imaging technology. They beat more than one hundred of their local colleagues to proceed to the next round.
    The four finalists will fly to Shanghai to compete against eighteen of their regional colleagues on 18 May.

  • SWUG winners print it again

    Winning newspaper sites at Single Width Users Group awards line-up for back-to-back celebrations in Tasmania.

    This year’s Single Width Users Group annual awards for newspaper production saw a re-run of last year’s results with the same two sites taking out the major awards.

    As in 2010, the big winner at this year’s award ceremony, held at Hobart’s Wrest Point convention centre over the weekend, was the Fairfax Media North Richmond site which took home both the Art Roller Shield for Best Overall Print Quality, won for its production of the Illawarra Mercury newspaper, and the Coates Australia Shield for Best Four Colour Newspaper which it won for production of The Land newspaper.

    The third major award produced another back-to-back winner in the category of Best Coldset Commercial Publication, presented by Flint Ink, which went to New Zealand-based Horton Media for its production of NZ Aviation, the same publication with which it won last year.

    The awards night capped off a busy weekend for more than 200 delegates from 41 printing sites around Australia and New Zealand who attended this year’s conference. Highlights included the traditional Friday night welcome function – a cruise up the Derwent River – sponsored by Kodak, and the Saturday night site visit to the local Davies Brothers print site, home of the Hobart Mercury newspaper.

    Key topics covered by the conference included the latest developments in UV printing and digital inkjet printing as well as proactive maintenance, environmental auditing and OH&S.

    Guest motivational speaker was renowned Australian axe man, David Foster, who demonstrated in dramatic fashion what can be done to a lump of wood apart from turning it into paper and printing news on it.

    Pictured: Bob Lockley, SWUG president (left) and Anthony Payne (right) congratulate Mike Horler from Horton Media NZ on winning the award for best coldset commercial publication two years in a row.

    Art Roller Shield – best overall print quality
    Highly commended – The Advocate – Examiner Print Centre (Goss Community)
    Runner-up – Australian Financial Review – Davies Brothers (KBA Comet)
    Winner – Illawarra Mercury – North Richmond (manroland Uniset 70)

    Coates Australia Shield – best overall four colour newspaper
    Highly commended – Australian Financial Review – Mandurah (manroland Uniset)
    Runner-up – Shepparton News – Newsprinters (Goss Community)
    Winner – The Land – North Richmond (manroland Uniset 70)

    Flint Ink shield – best coldset commercial publication
    Highly commended – Riverine Herald Real Estate – Newsprinters (Goss Community)
    Runner-up – The Eagle Summer 2010 – Print Leader Tamworth (Goss Community)
    Winner – NZ Aviation – Horton Media NZ (Goss Community)

  • More huffing and puffing over carbon debate

    Following James Cryer’s commentary last week on carbon calculators, Paul Nieuwhof Printing Industries general manager for Western Australia and national environment manager and Hagop Tchamkertenian Printing Industries national manager for policy and government affairs offer their thoughts on the matter.

    In response to James Cryer’s piece, James like many other people could be forgiven for viewing the various carbon calculators around the place with cynicism. There are plenty of them out there, but they are certainly not a precise science and they probably don’t need to be anyway. There are clearly defined boundaries of where scope one, two and three emissions are measured and in time everything we use will come with a disclosure of the carbon footprint. 
    The debate at the moment is enough to do anyone’s head in and especially printers who get the diatribe about printing using paper which destroys trees and takes away the planets lungs. Time will catch up with all those who currently downplay the significance of the carbon footprint issue. If the world continues being concerned with the level of carbon in the atmosphere, then there will be a cost associated with such emissions in everything we produce, sell and purchase.
    What we would say to James is that the world’s scientific community overwhelmingly acknowledges the rise in Green House Gases (GHGs) and that it is related to human activity. Carbon Dioxide (CO2) is the major GHG being emitted by human activity and it also serves as the unit of measurement. There is consensus that too much CO2 and other GHGs are polluting our thin atmosphere and whether we like it or not they constitute another form of pollution.  If the debate is one of, is CO2 the guilty party, well we have to take the word of the scientific community on that unless we are convinced that they are all part of some global conspiracy.  The same scientists would tell us that standing around the Fukushima nuclear plant would not be a good idea at the moment and who would argue with that. 
    CO2 emissions are measured in parts per million and we have no doubt that scientists can measure the CO2 emissions from a tonne of coal when it is burnt. If we think the scientists can’t measure the parts per million in the atmosphere of this weightless gas then one can only wonder how we ever landed men on the moon or developed the silicon chip not to mention our advances in medicine.    
    We know how much CO2 (roughly) it takes to produce 1kWh of grid energy, 1MJ of propane/butane, 1L of petrol and 1L of diesel. We are not measuring emissions, but the use of energy which is measurable and can be converted to CO2 equivalent.
    Is there a difference between the emissions of various printers? Our guess would be if you removed the best and the worst from the sample then probably not. With the introduction of a carbon tax we suspect that more of them will be looking to reduce their emission through efficiencies and other means. But in the absence of a calculator, what are we proposing to use when we are obliged to identify our carbon footprint?
    In regards to pursuing the CO2 footprint over the supply chain, there are already clear parameters as mentioned earlier in the various scope one, two and three emissions.  What many people in the paper and printing industries would feel somewhat aggrieved by is the fact that the carbon counter starts when the chainsaw hits the bark and there is no recognition of the carbon captured by the massive and increasing plantations feeding the paper industry. The term used is “additionally” and if we could change that then we’re sure we’d all be happier as an industry. 
    What’s to be done next?
    The first crucial step of any business is to mitigate its carbon emissions by becoming more efficient and reducing its energy use. With the Federal Government proposing to introduce a price on carbon from 1 July 2012 in the form of the proposed carbon tax, businesses will have a financial incentive to reduce their overall carbon footprint. Offsets are a second best option, in that what you can’t reduce, you aim to offset. The voluntary offset market has been under the microscope and it has not been as successful as one would have hoped. At one end of the spectrum it is highly politicised, and at the other end highly commercialised. Research into the voluntary carbon offset market a few years ago showed that administration costs can vary from between 5% to 35% and the cost per tonne of CO2 from $13 to $35. 
    James is right in that there are aspects that a carbon calculator won’t pick up and he cites the example of junk mail.  Whilst we would acknowledge that there are some issues with junk mail and litter, that part of the industry has implemented measures to reduce the problem. Advertisers wouldn’t continue using this form of printed material if it didn’t deliver the results for them. In the end, it may have a relatively small CO2 footprint too. If people don’t want it, they can show their preferences by placing appropriate notices on the mail box, and if they do want to receive it, then it is like newspapers, mostly placed back into recycling.
    A recently released life cycle assessment of the contribution of newspapers, magazines, photo books, books, and advertising leaflets to the climate impacts of consumption by Finnish households shows a small impact of approximately 1%. The biggest climate impacts of consumption by Finnish households were attributable to housing (28%), food products (16%), and transport (13%).

    Tony Duncan’s survey indicated customers don’t value environmental performance over price. Yes James, no surprises here and that would pretty much go for most things people buy.  But with the expectations of triple bottom line reporting there is a requirement for printers to demonstrate their sustainable practices to government purchasers and large corporates. The twist is that none of these major buyers of print want to see a shift in the price point but are all very quick to tell their own customers of the need to bear cost increases when they see fit. Frustrating, but what can you do?
    Carbon neutrality could well be a fad. That is why Printing Industries is helping the industry with initiatives like Sustainable Green Print to help industry members understand and reduce their carbon footprint. Also, a lot of the directly attributed carbon in the printing plant comes from electricity usage. And we all know that a carbon tax will increase these prices. Understanding the details of this issue now will help printing businesses put long term carbon reduction strategies in place to help mitigate these cost increases.
    Carbon measurement is unlikely to go away. If approached as a waste reduction strategy printing businesses will not only save money but also will be able to report the emissions they control to meet future reporting requirements. Government policy focus is on carbon and carbon reporting forms the foundation for benchmarking and reduction targets. While the printing industry continues to work successfully to address a large number of other environmental issues, these often tend to be industry specific. As an industry we can choose to ignore these facts and hope the problem goes away or we can start on a journey of understanding how carbon affects our business and what measures we can take to reduce its effect. To understand we need to be able to measure, as this provides us with the necessary benchmarks for ongoing improvements.

  • ***Ascent Partners: What’s your game plan for Q4 and beyond?***

    We’re now into the red time zone of Q3 FY 11 and many will find they are many goals behind compared to last year, and that this year will mark another loss. Others will enter the final quarter full of confidence – sales are good, they are making good money and their game plan is working.

    Either way the end of the third quarter is a great time for reflection – about what went right and what went wrong in the last three quarters. What needs to change to make the final quarter’s performance better? What changes can, and will, be made to the game plan?

    One of the most important elements of the last question is the “will” component. Many see the writing on the wall, but don’t make the changes. They can make the changes, but few follow them through with action.

    This is not surprising. We are all creatures of habit.  It’s how you’ve done business for the last 20 years –It’s “how we roll around here”.

    But using the football analogy, the game has changed, and it keeps changing. The game evolves, and better business models are being developed all the time.

    So inaction is not an option.  Here are some things to do at the end of Q3:

    •    Compare end of Q3 results to previous years – sales, GP, profitability, staff numbers and top 10 client mix. 
    •    Do some forecasting to how you will finish up with these. 
    •    Ask yourself, “is this an adequate return on your time and your capital investments?”
    •    Look at the trends

    That should be a very simple exercise. 

    The vital question that follows is “what you are going to do with knowledge of that data?”. For those where the trends are bad, obviously there is an urgent need to ask “what can you do to turn things around?”

    It’s at that point that most struggle to come up with the game plan, many because they lack to real objectivity in analysing the data and then deciding what to do about it.

    That’s why it’s a great idea to get someone outside the business to guide you. From a financial perspective, that may be your accountant, from a business planning perspective, perhaps someone in the industry who knows what’s happening in the industry, and can help develop the game plan, that can deliver the results you require.

    It may well be that the resultant game plan is about exiting the industry or about selling the business. That may result in the very best financial outcome. It is here that Ascent Partners can help:

    •    Appraising the business

    •    Helping develop a “game plan” to exit or improve the business

    •    Helping to market / and or sell the business

    Alternatively, do the basic appraisal of the business’s FY 11 performance, as detailed above, yourself. And then decide on a game plan for the final Quarter of FY 11 and beyond. It’s a great time to reflect and plan, and for many a great time to develop a new game plan.   

    For further information on our appraisal and new business sales services, ring Richard Rasmussen on 0402 021 101 or visit our web site at



  • GAMAA gets social at speaker program

    Mag Nation founder, Sahil Marchant and printer-turned-MSP David Minnett speak to GAMAA members about the role of social media in print.

    Merchant, founder of the magazine outlet chain, Mag Nation, and a marketing consultant to B2B and consumer brands, spoke about the impact of social media and how companies are using this medium to brand build and communicate with customers.

    In his presentation he touched on some key points including the statistic that 40 percent of those 34 years and under check Facebook first thing in the morning, often from bed. But the fastest growing demographic on Facebook are females over 50 years.

    Pictured: (l-r) Sahil Merchant, Ian Martin and David Minnett.

    He said social media was “neither a fad or a revolution. It is just a different way of communicating. It is like TV – when it was launched it was something new and exciting, today it is part of life.”

    David Minnett of Group Momentum also spoke of his experiences in transforming the company from printer to MSP. “Making the shift to MSP forced us to look at everything we do – branding, company profile, the language of marketing versus a production platform. It took us two years to evolve from a PSP to an MSP, to build up the credentials, to talk the talk,” he said.

    According to Minnett, a pivotal moment was winning the AAPT account. “We pitched an idea to them, ran a trial and after a month they moved all their direct marketing and EDM (electronic direct marketing) to Group Momentum,” he added.

  • Sculptor turns Yellow Pages into work of art

    One household’s trash is another artist’s treasure for Long-Bin Che, who has carved out a new use for the Yellow Pages.

    According to culture blog, Holy Kaw! artist Long-Bin Chen transforms telephone books into works of art, giving new life to the outdated telephone directories.

    Phone books have copped some serious flack in an internet age. Last month, PMP CEO, Richard Allely, even predicted that the White Pages will cease to exist. “The White Pages is a sunset business – it’s not if it will cease, but when,” he told Print21. “I don’t see White Pages as something that will be around for a long time.”

    Oh well, we’re sure Long-Bin has plenty of use for them. See below (images from Holy Kaw!):


  • ISO take up still to take off

    Relaunched Colour Standards website reveals that only 38 Australian printers are ISO 12647-certified.

    The new-look website, which went live last Friday, was driven by Luke Wooldridge, who came on board as chairman of the TC130 committee last year and has since been actively working to raise the group’s profile.

    Wooldridge believes that this is the first time in the world that such a list has been made available to the public and will significantly influence and inform print buyers. “The reason behind this is that we feel it’s very important to promote standardised printing in Australia,” he said.

    “These printers deserve the recognition for their efforts in gaining certification, and this website now provides a central point of reference for all buyers of print that need to acquire ISO standards-based product.”

    Pictured: setting the standard, Philip Andersen, Luke Wooldridge and Grant Churchill at Printing Industries to announce the launch of the website.

    Top of the list is three NSW printers: Hannanprint; Offset Alpine Printing and SOS Print+Media which have each paid $297 pa for premium listing. For Michael Schulz, director of SOS, it was important to be a part of the list as interest in standards grows. "There are more and more people looking for colour standards," he told Print21. "We have made a fair investment in certification and we can see that it’s worth it."

    The list very much reflects that the big end of town are those who have embraced ISO standards most. The one major player not listed is PMP, Australia’s largest printer which, according to Wooldridge, self-certifies rather that using Ugra or Fogra.

    Wooldridge anticipates that the number of listed printers will grow with the website updated quarterly. “It’s quite a small number – we’re hoping it will increase,” he said. “ISO certification is not overly expensive and those who don’t take the leap will be struggling with clients.”

    A series of advertisements in magazines which target print buyers, such as advertising agencies, is planned to raise awareness of the website.


  • Heidelberg softens up with MIS buyout

    Heidelberg moves further into MIS with the acquisition of Belgian software specialist, CERM.

    Heidelberg plans to launch and sell CERM’s existing portfolio of management information system for commercial and label printing worldwide and to integrate it into the Prinect production workflow. Management information systems are used to manage all the commercial processes of a print shop.

    The purchase marks the second major development for the German offset giant after recently announcing a digital partnership with Ricoh earlier this year which will see Heidelberg sell Ricoh’s latest color digital press, the Ricoh ProTM C901 Graphic Arts Edition – Ricoh`s high speed color digital press with Ricoh PxPTM Chemical toner, as well as appropriate future production printing offerings in Ricoh’s pipeline.

    According to Marcel Kiessling, member of the Heidelberg Services management board, developing its MIS offering to the marketplace is a natural progression. “By acquiring CERM, a well-known software specialist in Western Europe, Heidelberg is expanding its portfolio of management information systems,” he said.

    “We aim to present a fully integrated MIS solution with central data management in combination with our Prinect print shop workflow at drupa 2012 and start the worldwide roll-out step by step.”

    Former owner and now managing director of CERM, Tom Musschoot, said that the company would continue to serve all its existing customers. “As part of Heidelberg, we will be able to extend our business to a truly global level,” he added.


  • Letters, feedback, get it off your chest: 30 March 2011

    One woman roars over the language of guest speaker, Stacey Currie, at this month’s Heidelberg Women In Print, while another reader congratulates the use of iPads at university.

    Re: Heidelberg helps women win in print
    I was one of the women at the Sydney event who complained about an excessive use of bad language and the closing comment that pushed the Women’s Movement back twenty years.

    As a volunteer mentor for business development in places like Redfern, Waterloo and parts of Western Sydney I can assure you I am no stranger to the odd swear word or ten.  I have no problem with inappropriate language in moderation but the Currie speech was over the top.  The closing comments including “I love working in a male-dominated industry cause I love men” and “I plan to write a shit load of books” were just cringe-worthy.

    What about those of us who have slogged away in that male dominated industry for twenty years or more who have been at the pointy end of that discrimination?  Do we shut up and say nothing?  We can do at that work but in an event hosted for women surely we have the right to speak up and feel confident that our feedback will be treated with some respect.

    On my table alone there were women who represented more than 75 years in the industry collectively.  We too look for mentors, women with actual runs on the board who can inspire us to continue in our efforts to do well and be successful despite the male dominated environment.

    I’m fairly certain that whom ever passed on our comments to you did not provide our full feedback as it was constructive with suggestions on other speakers they might like to contact for future event.  The article was a cheap shot not worthy of your publication or Alison Stieven-Taylor, a better journalist than that.

    Most disgruntled customers say nothing, do nothing and never come back.   If that’s as good as it gets and equality and language no longer mean anything in an industry built on communication then women of merit need to rethink their career choices.

    Very disappointing on all fronts.

    Colleen Godsell


    My wife was inspired by her story. The people who complained should get a life and were probably jealous.
    Congratulations to Miss Currie.
    Ross Campbell


    Re: Science students experiment with iPad in textbook shake up
    This is a fantastic initiative. I do believe this will be the beginning of something far more beneficial for students. Along with the materials, students would be able to access medical papers online as needed in class.

    Thanks for posting this article.

    Ibi Szentirmay   

  • Tony Abbott pops in to Paragon Printing

    Canberra’s Paragon Printing received a visit from opposition leader, Tony Abbott, who predicts the business’ annual electricity bill of $180,000 would increase by about $40,000-$50,000 annually under the proposed carbon tax.

    Along with Shadow Minister for Climate Action, Environment and Heritage, Greg Hunt, the two visited the Canberra printer last week ahead of the state election. Abbott said that the increased prices that would have to be passed onto print customers would not diminish print demand, but would instead see more imported print from China and similar overseas suppliers.
    "This is an industry that suffers fierce import competition. So, not only will the price go up for consumers but tax payers’ jobs will be exported overseas," he said.
    Printing Industries national manager for policy and government affairs, Hagop Tchamkertenian, said the Association had written to the Prime Minister and other senior government ministers, as well as the independents serving on the Multi-Party Climate Change Committee, voicing its concerns over the proposed Carbon Tax.
    “We have urged the government to ensure that the printing industry, which is exposed to international competition, is not disadvantaged by the introduction of a carbon tax. This is crucial, as any carbon tax induced cost increases will reduce the competitiveness of the printing industry resulting in potential carbon leakage," he said.
    Hagop said preliminary assessments on the possible impact of the carbon tax shows that it could affect a range of cost areas.
    “Besides increased energy costs, other cost impacts could include increased raw material costs for paper and other consumables, freight and transport, and petrol,” he said.
    Printing Industries has prepared an issues paper on the carbon tax issue which outlines possible impacts on the industry and makes policy recommendations to ensure that the printing industry’s economic viability is not impaired. The issues paper will shortly be distributed to members for comment and feedback.
    “Our industry members are distributed across every region and electorate of Australia, a fact that the Government needs to appreciate when considering the economic impact of the proposed Carbon Tax," Hagop said.
    View the doorstop interview transcript with Abbott at Paragon Printing here.

  • Opus Print Group moves into the UK

    Cliff Brigstocke’s Opus Print Group crosses the border and enters the United Kingdom, with plans to move into North America.

    The group has formed strategic alliances with two British printers, Hobbs the Printers and MPG Books Group as part of the plan to better service global and Asia Pacific region customers.

    According to David Hobbs, owner of Hobbs, partnering with Opus was a way of keeping up with the changing world of print. “The development of strategic alliances around the world can only be a positive step,” he said. “I’ve known both Tony [Chard of MPG] and Cliff for a number of years and believe we can work together to achieve common goals.”

    Chard believes that the alliance provides clients with a cost-effective manufacturing platform. “I am delighted that MPG Books Group, the largest independent book and journal manufacturer in the UK, is part of this alliance.”

    The expansion is only the start for Opus, which last year moved into Asia. Brigstocke said that the group is now looking to further expend its global capacity with a strategic alliance in North America.

    “Negotiations are advanced and we expect an announcement in the near future,” he said. “When combined with our existing China partner, Hung Hing, this will round out our global capability, unmatched in our specialist markets.”