Monday, August 30, 2010

The Dukes of Digital: CGX is highlighted in August's Printing Impressions magazine

Consolidated Graphics made the cover of Printing Impressions magazine this month and was featured in the prestigious trade publication. It was a group effort, showcasing the work of the entire executive team and the significant progress that the company has made since its inception under the leadership of CEO Joe Davis.

Here are just a few of my favorite excerpts from the article, but be sure to check out the complete story, as it provides a solid snapshot of who CGX is and where the company is heading:

On emerge:

  • It is at the intersection of people and technology that you will find the kingdom of Consolidated Graphics, and emerge was just one way in which the company is 
building on its empire.
  • "One recurring theme I hear is that marketers and procurement people are starting to think more creatively about what they can do," Grohs says. "It's kind of a perfect storm, because we have all of this technology, digital equipment and the recession all hitting the industry at the same time. And, it seems that no one else is trying to take the lead and show people what can really be done. Our event was fresh, innovative and educational."
On sales and recruiting:
  • Saying that people are the most important asset at a printing company reeks of trite indulgence. But not for a firm that invests in a Leadership Development Program, an initiative that seeks out the brightest and hardest-working young men and women from American campuses nationwide to mold them into future CGX executives.
  • According to Michael Barton, executive vice president and chief administrative officer, "If anything, our expectations have increased because we realize that, as CGX grows, we'll need a large pool of talented people ready to assume the leadership roles that will become available.
  • Its sales force is constantly raising the bar in terms of cross-selling opportunities, with more than $100 million per year in such sales. Being able to sell the full capabilities of CGX—like its legendary stout balance sheet—is a given for its sales force.
On technology:
  • Davis points out that the 220 machines which grace the CGX network make it the largest fleet of digital presses in the United States.
  • Jon Biro, executive vice president, chief financial and accounting officer, notes that investments over the past two years have enabled the company to nurture what he calls the "world's largest digital platform."
On acquisitions:
  • "Our acquisition strategy isn't directly tied to geography or acquiring new capabilities," Cohen notes. "We look for the best companies, with the best leadership and the best customers, no matter where they happen to be. 
  • CGX's M&A platform is as robust as any, buoyed by ready access to capital and ready to stretch into a 27th state, though geography is not a requisite.
On innovation and progress:
  • For a major printing conglomerate, it boasts many of the traits shown by companies a mere fraction of CGX's size.
  • "It doesn't matter how big we get," Davis remarks. "The day we start thinking like a big company is the day we're going to die. We've got to stay nimble, stay flexible. We can't get caught up in big company bureaucracy. If we do that, we're going to lose what makes us so 

Thursday, August 12, 2010

2010 Annual Shareholders' Meeting Recap

The 2010 Annual Shareholders' Meeting just came to a close, and was a huge success. In a less than ideal economic climate, CGX has managed to strengthen its key differentiators (a strong balance sheet, a thriving training program, and state-of-the-art technology platform) to once again come out ahead.

The event attracted over 300 people with an assortment of ties to the printing company, and featured presentations from CEO Joe Davis, CFO Jon Biro, and EVP of Sales and Marketing Aaron Grohs, all of whom touched on the importance of technology in printing and a continued focus on recruiting top talent.

Each guest received a copy of the annual report (complete with QR codes and a digital version), the new Emerge publication, and a Printing Impressions cover story scheduled to release next week. There is no doubt that CGX is continuing to invest in its future, and has solid growth prospects, both organic and acquisition-based.

Following are a few photos from the event, which was a solid kickoff to the National Associates' Meeting, which will be held tomorrow through Saturday. For more images, visit our Flickr page.

CGX Annual Shareholders' Meeting Tonight

Tonight is the Consolidated Graphics annual shareholders' meeting. To most companies, this might just mean a conference call and maybe a slide show via webinar. For CGX, the annual shareholders' meeting is an event of it's own, one that kicks off the National Associates Meeting (NAM) and brings in top investors, bankers, customers, and employees of all levels to discuss the past year's progress and plans for the year(s) to come.

This year, as in previous years, a ballroom full of interested parties will network and share insight on Consolidated Graphics and the printing industry as a whole. The shareholders' meeting will be held at the Hilton Americas from 5pm to 7pm, with networking to follow.

For the two days following the annual shareholders' meeting, an inspiring, ambitious group of recent college graduates who represent the future of Consolidated Graphics. CEO Joe Davis started the Leadership Development Program back in 1992, and the award winning program has received numerous accolades for its ability to attract and retain top talent to the seemingly unglamorous printing industry. Sitting in a room with this intelligent, young group, one might wonder why they turned down various opportunities to work at a printing facility. However, once you hear stories of associates becoming leading sales reps and company presidents, you realize that at a company like CGX opportunity is endless, and your future is whatever you make of it.