Market: Print shops have a choice – adapt or perish

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It was less than a year ago that some rather unusual news broke in the industry: Steffen Tomasi, who had sold his Flyerline AG in 2016 and had originally planned to retire as Managing Director in 2023, was buying the company back without further ado. But there is more to tell about Flyerline, the company’s business model, the corporate culture and Tomasi’s personal view of the industry and its developments, as Tomasi explained at the Online Print Symposium 2024.

“We are not actually an online print shop,” said Steffen Tomasi at the OPS stage, who founded Flyerline in 2002. “Online is a channel – but we are more than an online print shop. We are a service provider, a print shop. With exports of just 5% – and most of them to Germany – and production in digital printing and, to date, offset printing. We offer graphic services, over 400 standard products in the standard range in the store, are very strong in product development, are broadly positioned in packaging, make trade fair stands, fullfilment in logistics and are also strongly positioned in digital commerce with closed stores and web-to-print solutions.”  Around 65 employees currently generate a turnover of CHF 17 million, almost exclusively on the Swiss market.

But Switzerland is no paradise either. Print volumes are also shrinking here, and the challenges are growing. Digitization is not an option, but an absolute necessity. With over 20 years of experience as CEO of Flyerline Schweiz AG and visionary concepts, Steffen Tomasi challenged the industry to boldly reinvent itself. He and his company are setting the best example: not only is production in Altnau initially exclusively digital, then both digital and offset printing in line with customer requirements and, since this year, purely digital printing again – the business model and the type of products have also constantly evolved over the years. After all, one thing is clear: if you don’t move with the times, you will be gone in no time.

“Corona was just a booster for developments that would have happened anyway: People are printing less and some things are no longer printed at all. Some printed items are simply no longer needed. And small print runs are not a trend, but a need,” Tomasi stated pragmatically and provocatively, and also pointed the way forward for print companies. It is important to take advantage of the opportunities offered by technology, to actively design offers, and to anticipate and fulfill market needs. “Our path as Flyerline is 100 percent digital and mass customization is our business model.” Mass customization should become part of the DNA, he said, and the opportunities offered by new technologies should be exploited. In the end, it boils down to a simple sentence: “Adapt or perish is the alternative,” explained Steffen Tomasi.

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Market: Print shops have a choice - adapt or perish
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Market: Print shops have a choice - adapt or perish
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It was less than a year ago that some rather unusual news broke in the industry: Steffen Tomasi, who had sold his Flyerline AG in 2016 and had originally planned to retire as Managing Director in 2023, was buying the company back without further ado. But there is more to tell about Flyerline, the company's business model, the corporate culture and Tomasi's personal view of the industry and its developments, as Tomasi explained at the Online Print Symposium 2024.
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Beyond-print.net

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