Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Copier & MPS Industry Fighting Over the "Last Sheet of Paper"?

The Copier industry continues to evolve, and it seems all of the major manufacturers or at least most of them are making the necessary changes to become more than a "copier manufacturer".  If you're an avid reader of the industry blogs, and articles many pundits are predicting the doom and gloom of ink and paper.  I'm told and I've read that the next generation of office workers won't require paper, copiers, printers, fax machines or scanners. The next generation of office workers will be paperless.....due to Andriod Smart Phones and the proliferation of Apple IPADs and related tablet devices.  There's a great article here from my pals at gap intelligence.

But just recently there seems to be a war of the words, a recent article by Lou Slawetsky, CEO, Industry Analysts, Inc stated this "What happened? Managed print (or, MPS, or MDS, or OPS, or etc.) was to have been the strategy off the millennium. A market with a triple digit growth rate. The ability to lock in your account for three to five years. Gross margins of more than 50%. A natural conduit for the placement of MFPs supplied by your primary vendor. A continuous revenue stream. A stepping stone leading from managed print (or managed printers) to managed IT services. Easy sales, huge upside. Sales reps love the comp plan. MPS is a great plan that benefits both the dealer and the imaging system vendor."  you can read the rest of Lou words of wisdom here.

Personally, we had a poll running on the Print4Pay Hotel forums for about a year.  The Poll asked dealers if  "You're now selling Managed Print Services "Your Thoughts Now".   Almost 70% responded that they were not happy with the profits and or if they had to do it over again, they would not.  I just thought I'd get this out there while we transition to what I read today.

Today, saw a blog post from Ken Stewart titled The Six Promises of MPS on MPS Insights.  Ken states "While I can attest to the fact that the thorns of learning a new business model can be quite painful, all indicators point to one simple truth: MPS is a business model proven to be successful by many providers".  But even more interesting is the statement that "MPS can be used at the core stepping stone to IT related services".  I agree, the company I work although we are not really and MPS provider however we a re making the transition to IT Managed Services.

Here's what I see...paper will not just go away, I do believe that the general office use of bond paper will decline, but I also believe that niche Color Printers/MFP's and Imaging Presses will become more prevalent in the future.  These niche systems will allow for these Color Printers/MFP's to print on a wider variety of media, thus allowing more companies than ever  to be more creative with  printing smaller runs of customized marketing materials. I also believe that there are still many pages/clicks to be captured by Color Printers/MFP's. Take a trip to Relyco's web site and there's a treasure trove of medias that will work with Color Printers/MFp's.

Does it seems like we're all fighting for the last few  sheets of paper? Will paper go away, yup. Are the predictions of doom and gloom for paper premature, yup. 

-=Good Selling=-


Anonymous said...

Paper will never die completely, IMHO. I guess there will always be a need for printers and copiers, but you are right, it will be less in the future.
Great blog

Regards NCT

Anonymous said...

Paper will never die, but we will start to print less. So i agree with you.

Regards NCT

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