Print is dead! Long live print!

In a world of digital transformation one could be excused for thinking that corporate printing is dead. Nobody prints any serious volume anymore, surely?

Well you might be surprised to learn that print is still an US$800bn a year industry and digital printing is growing by approximately $10bn a year according to latest estimates. To put this into perspective: the global CRM market is currently estimated to be a $40bn market, a mere minnow by comparison.

Despite this, the print industry has not really experienced any radical disruption for decades. Granted, print technologies have improved significantly, but the underlying business models have remained unchallenged. Until now that is....

Enter Gelato - Gelato is shaking up the entire industry and is making great progress against its ambition to be the largest SaaS-based printing platform on the planet. Those who know the corporate print industry have started to notice the work of Henrik Muller Hansen and his team of dedicated professionals. Gelato is best described as a hybrid organisation that has cleverly harmonised a number of concepts to build a killer proposition:

  • Software as a Service (providing easy, global access to marketing-approved printable assets that can be ordered on- demand via a B2B eCommerce platform)
  • Sharing Economy (assembling a global network of state-of-the-art print partners so that corporations can access affordable capacity without compromising on quality)
  • Billing and Logistics (a solution that solves the complexities of local delivery, billing and taxation)

So how does it work?

Imagine logging on to a secure portal and, based on your role and permissions, being presented with all the printable digital assets pertaining to your region/product interest. Imagine a system that supports an extensive range of printing formats so that your design partners have maximum flexibility when is comes to format and creative. Imagine a system that can facilitate access to translation partners so that content can be localised whilst adhering to brand guidelines. Imagine a system that then empowers the local user to push the content they need to print for delivery at a time and place most convenient to them. Imagine a system that can record all of your print transactions offering full visibility and transparency to your business of print-related costs. Imagine a system that can facilitate GDPR compliance for personalised digital printing, allowing relevant information to be managed in accordance with regulation.

So why is a concept like this important for a CMO or a CFO in today’s intensive digital world? Herein lies the answers:

  • Reduced admin time
  • Overall reduction of direct costs
  • Brand consistency and adherence
  • Streamline workflows
  • Significantly reduced shipping distances and customs costs
  • On-demand printing lowers volumes and storage requirements
  • Cost transparency and control
  • Improved Reporting
  • Environmental responsibility
  • GDPR compliance

Gelato estimate that companies have the potential to eliminate 90% of their print- related shipping distances and 50% of their print volumes. If true, these claims could have a significant impact on Marketing department budgets - perhaps releasing funds to invest in other digital transformation technologies - thus further reducing the need for print.

Gelato also claim that corporates who print centrally or in region can both benefit from the system albeit for slightly different reasons.

  • The centralised printing client can continue to manage content centrally, ensuring brand consistency and control, but at the same time can empower their local entities to call off the print demand when they need it. This creates immediate reductions in shipping and overprinting costs.
  • In contrast, the distributed printing client can regain control of their brand by ensuring that content does not become compromised as the content leaves the safety of the centre.

In short Gelato has a created a truly disruptive solution that has the power to change the face of corporate printing forever.

Uber is the largest taxi company in the world and they own no cars, AirBnB is the largest accommodation provider on the planet and they own no real estate, Amazon is the biggest retailer and they hold no stock. Could Gelato become the largest corporate print company on the planet for similar reasons? We think so.

We are so pleased to work with future-minded leaders such as Johan Rasmussen, Head of Market Communications at Lindab.

About the author
Steve oversees Marketing, Sales and Customer Success for Gelato Globe thus ensuring that customers get the best possible experience when interacting with our brand.

Before joining Gelato Steve worked as Regional Vice President at Salesforce where he and his team sold digital transformation and marketing technologies to enterprise customers. He has extensive experience of building globally scalable direct and indirect go-to-market strategies for telecoms and technology companies.

Before Software, Steve spent 8 years in Telecoms and 8 years in the Leasing industry. He is also a qualified Chartered Accountant.