The Good Fight
Unfortunately, printers—"laser, ink-jet, double-sided, color and black-and-white"—were the punch line of the joke. In a fictional press conference, incoming CEO Tim Cook commented that "the release of upcoming Apple products such as the iPhone 5 would be postponed for at least four years so the company could throw all its time and resources into the creation of high-quality printers for the home and office."
Funny? Yes. But also very telling about the public perception of the print industry. Technology is (and will continue to be) a formidable opponent for traditional channels of communication such as print.
This is especially evident in the continuous forms market, which appears to take a hit each year. Nevertheless, while these forms may lack the high demand they once had years ago, they remain relevant. According to Darrell Westhoff, sales manager for Pittsburg, Kansas-based Ace Forms, mail processors and large processing centers particularly have a need for these products. Ace Forms is committed to fulfilling their requests, and Westhoff believes the company's 40-year history gives it a competitive advantage in the continuous sector.
"We have offered a full line of continuous forms in the most popular sizes," he said. "We can produce up to six color, UV forms in press sizes 14", 17", 20", 22" and 24" and the multiples of each size. Value added features include barcoding, card carriers, integrated labels, pocket forms, cross web glue and jumbo numbering."
Established in 1913, The Flesh Company, headquartered in St. Louis, is another company that understands the value of continuous forms. With approximately 42 percent of its business consisting of continuous forms, The Flesh Company produces printed rolls, continuous multiple part, carbonless and security applications among other types.