Wednesday, July 14, 2010

ABC Imaging acquires Graphic Reproduction, San Francisco area industry leader

From a press release found on ABC Imaging's web-site:

ABC Imaging acquires Graphic Reproduction, San Francisco area industry leader
Washington, DC—July 12, 2010—ABC Imaging announced today that it has acquired Graphic Reproduction of Concord, CA.

Founded in 1959 Graphic Reproduction has a long tradition of being in the forefront of digital printing and reprographic technology. Like ABC Imaging, Graphic Reproduction combines innovative technology with core philosophies of high quality and rigorous customer service.

"We are pleased to have the opportunity to be the new owners of Graphic Reproduction," said Medi Falsafi, President and CEO of ABC Imaging. "Our two companies are very similar—we both value quality and we both want to provide our customers the best possible service with every job."

For ABC Imaging the acquisition adds three production hubs in the San Francisco area. The largest Graphic Reproduction location, in Concord, CA, includes extensive production capability. The facility can print a full range of products using small, large, and wide format digital printers; 3D printers; and specialty printing and graphic arts equipment.

"Graphic Reproduction offers many of the same products and services as we do," Mr. Falsafi said. "We were attracted to the fact that they have always looked ahead and are early adopters of new print technologies."

- - - - - -

Joel's comments:

In ABC's press release, it says that Graphic Reproduction (GR) was founded back in 1959. While I never met Walt Walker, founder of GR, I certainly knew of him and of his excellent reputation. In late 1981 when I first met Paul Koze (former CEO of BPS Reprographics in San Francisco) and asked him "who are your major competitors in the S.F. market", he replied that GR was.

There is, though, some confusion on my part about "GR." It was my understanding that Ford Graphics entered the San Francisco market (sometime around 1989-1991) by purchasing Graphic Reproduction. And, with that acquisition, "inherited" a nice staffed FM relationship with HOK Architects. But, if Ford bought GR back then, then how can ABC be buying GR now? I think my confusion has something to do with the Walker family. I think the story goes something like this: at one time, Walt Walker was in business with his son and wife. And, at some point, the business must have been split (son/wife together with one of the parts and Walt with his own part.) Ford bought one of the parts, now ABC is buying the other part.

Hey, there must be someone out there who knows the real story about the Walker family and the entity that Ford bought when Ford first entered the S.F. market. How about letting me know, so I can correct this post.

Wow, it looks like competition is going to heat up in the San Francisco AEC Reprographics market. Now, Ford Graphics (ARC), ABC Imaging and NRI, three of the top ten reprographics enterprises in the U.S. (if not in the world) are going "head to head" in that major market and all three companies are "major players" in the AEC OnSite (FM) business! (Note: that situation already existed before ABC's acquisition of GR, since NRI opened last year and since ABC already had two locations in the Bay area. What's changed is that ABC has acquired market share.)

[p.s. now that I've had a few minutes to think further (i.e., reflect back in time) about this, I do remember being contacted by a business broker about Graphic Reproduction, but I don't recall if I was still with Rowley-Scher Reprographics at the time (that would have been in 1988) or if I was already out of the business (that would have made it around 1990 or 1991). I remember signing a confidentiality statement and later receiving information about the acquisition opportunity. But, that's all I remember. Hey, it's been along time and I'm old! Also, if my mind is working a bit sharper now (probably not), I think that it was (a) GR that Ford purchased and, at the time, the other Walker owned business (or soon to be opened other Walker business) was initially called Walker Reproduction. If that is the case, then perhaps, after a period of time, the Walker name was replaced by the former GR name?]

No comments:

Post a Comment