Wednesday, November 30, 2016

PlanGrid - now nearly 5 years old - impressive progress!

The very first post we did on the Reprographics 101 Blog about PlanGrid was on March 9, 2012, so, almost five years ago.  Here’s a link to that post:

Today, when one visits PlanGrid’s web-site, and looks at the “about us” information, one will notice this – very impressive – information:

After an initial seed rounding of funding amount to $1.1 million, PlanGrid completed two additional rounds of funding – raised $18 million in May 2015 (led by Sequoia Capital) – raised an additional $40 million in October 2015 (led by Tenaya Capital).  That’s some serious funding!

And, just as impressive, look at PlanGrid’s “outside board members”:

Carol Bartz – Former CEO of AutoDesk
Ben Boyer – Managing Director of Tenaya Capital
Douglas Leone – Managing Partner of Sequoia Capital
George Hu – Former COO of

Tracy Young is one of the original founders of PlanGrid and she continues on in the CEO role.  Hat’s off to what looks like an extraordinary success, so far.

Real Estate and Construction - Looking quite healthy per Federal Reserve's most recent BeigeBook Report

Real Estate and Construction
Residential real estate activity improved across Districts. Reports about existing- and new-home sales were mixed, but most Districts noted a slight to modest increase during the period. Residential construction was up in the Cleveland, Atlanta, Chicago, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Kansas City, and Dallas Districts. Home prices grew in many Districts, including Boston, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Atlanta, St. Louis, Kansas City, and San Francisco. Philadelphia reported that the strength of the single-family market is in high-end housing. In contrast, Kansas City reported that sales of low- and medium-priced homes continued to outpace sales of higher-priced homes. Dallas reported that the sales of lower-priced homes remained solid. Home inventories were generally reported to be low or declining and restraining sales growth. Boston, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Richmond, and Minneapolis reported low or decreasing inventories. Reports on inventory levels varied in Atlanta, while inventories held steady in Kansas City.
Commercial construction activity moved higher in the New York, Cleveland, Richmond, Atlanta, St. Louis, Kansas City, and San Francisco Districts. In contrast, Minneapolis noted a slowing in commercial construction. The Boston, Richmond, Minneapolis, and San Francisco Districts reported increases in leasing activity, while Philadelphia noted a lull in nonresidential leasing growth compared with the prior period. Dallas reported leasing activity as mostly unchanged. Commercial sales activity continued to be robust in Minneapolis and grew modestly in Kansas City. Ongoing multifamily construction has been steady at a fairly high level in New York. Multifamily construction varied in the Atlanta District and slowed somewhat in Richmond, Minneapolis, and San Francisco.

Bank of New York Mellon increases its position in ARC Document Solutions

This note appeared on on Nov 30, 2016

“Bank of New York Mellon Corp raised its position in ARC Document Solutions Inc. (NYSE:ARC) by 34.6% during the second quarter (of 2016), according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 482,285 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 123,880 shares during the period. Bank of New York Mellon Corp owned 1.02% of ARC Document Solutions worth $1,876,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

SURVEY RESULTS: A/E/C Plan Printing Survey and A/E/C Plan Printing Equipment Survey

Surveys completed; survey results and accompanying article (i.e, my comments about the survey results) are now up on the APDSP web-site (link to article on APDSP web-site):

Link to complete survey results – A/E/C Plan Printing Survey:

Link to complete survey results – A/E/C Plan Printing EQUIPMENT Survey:

To those Reprographers who took the time to do so, thank you for participating in our two recent surveys!

Just a couple of comments about the two surveys.  (Note: these comments could not be included in the comments I wrote-up for the survey-results article I wrote for the APDSP web-site, since these particular comments were viewed as “politically incorrect” for the APDSP web-site):

Politically incorrect comment #1:
Due to anti-trust concerns, associations (such as the APDSP) do not like to post articles on their web-sites or comments in their newsletters that speak to the issue of “pricing”.  Here’s a comment about pricing that was “deleted” from the comments that I wrote up for the article on APDSP:

As to pricing (same or different), “color” vs. “b/w”, only 5 respondents out of 53 reported that they are offering the same price for both color and b/w output (4 respondents said they are doing this, but only for certain specific customers.) I expect that to rise in the future…..  (I base this expectation on what I’ve been told about the “cost” difference on an HP PageWide XL, “color output cost” vs. “b/w output cost”….. not a significant difference in cost, so I’ve been told.)  12 out of 52 respondents said they think some of their competitors will flat-rate pricing (same for color and b/w) in the future, and another 17 respondents (out of 52) said they think that is possibly coming.

As to those who do charge different prices for color vs. b/w plan printing, the “premium” for color appears to be all over the place.  34 out of 49 (so, a substantial majority of) respondents are charging a premium of 200% or more.  The rule I expect Reprographers are following, pricing-wise, is to get as much as you can for as long as you can.  Why would you not?!!”

Politically incorrect comment #2:
As one who conducts surveys from time to time, I must admit that it is rather frustrating when a large number of firms do not participate in the surveys.  A comment about that:

“91% of respondents indicated that they offer an Internet-based planroom service.  Based on the responses to “which planroom do you use”, it is apparent that ReproConnect is the clear leader, at least for those who participated in the survey.  [Note:  it is always possible that ReproMax and RSA members decided to completely boycott our survey.  I did reach out to the head dudes at each enterprise (Rick B and Kevin H) to ask them to point their members to the two surveys I posted; based on the fact that not a single respondent indicated the use of DFS (ReproMax’s planroom), the only reasonable takeway, I think, is that not a single ReproMax member participated in our surveys.  Inasmuch as I was one of the original founders of ReproMax (then called ReproCAD), some might think that a boycott would PMO. Not.]”

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Sepialine appoints Bob Paschal as Channel Development Manager

Paschal’s position will strengthen relationships with equipment manufacturers and dealer networks

San Francisco, 11/15/2016 - Sepialine announced today that Bob Paschal has joined the company as Channel Development Manager. Paschal comes to Sepialine from Konica Minolta, where he worked as the Program Manager of their wide format division. Previous to Konica Minolta, Paschal worked with several equipment providers, including ARC, NGI and Alabama Graphics.
As Channel Development Manager, Paschal will be responsible for developing sales channel programs to promote Sepialine’s wide-format-focused products, Argos and Printerpoint. Paschal will create and nurture programs for the sales teams of companies like HP, Canon, Konica Minolta and KIP.
“Bob’s experience working within both manufacturers and resellers of wide format equipment with be a great asset to Sepialine” says CEO Jeremy Evans. “He understands both sides of the aisle. We are looking forward to him opening new doors within our channels to increase awareness of the great products we offer.
In addition to developing programs within the OEM channel space, Paschal will be working closely with dealer networks like ReproMAX and RSA to understand the needs of their members, and create programs that align with network sales initiatives.
“I am very excited to be on the Sepialine team,” says Paschal. “Sepialine is a unique company with a fantastic value proposition. We have great brand awareness in the AEC space but I believe there is plenty of room for growth in the vertical as well as expansion outside in areas such as wide format graphics. I think what we bring to the table is unparalleled. Can’t wait to see what the future holds.”
About Sepialine

Sepialine is a San Francisco-based technology company, specializing in print-related software. Formed in 1998, Sepialine creates applications to solve the needs of imaging technology providers and their customers. Sepialine’s partners include HP, Canon, KIP, Konica Minolta, Ricoh, Xerox and more.