Archive for July, 2014

July 30th, 2014

Checking In: A Year Later, Keith Gray Setting Sales Records

Covenant Printing was a commercial offset printer doing just over half a million in sales serving colleges, churches, non-profits and others when Keith Gray joined the AlphaGraphics Network in June of 2013.

Screen Shot 2014-07-30 at 2.46.17 PMKeith and his wife, Michelle, were looking for an acquisition, and Covenant was interested in selling the business. Now, the Grays have acquired Covenant and relocated it to a 6,000-square-foot, full-service AlphaGraphics Business Center in their Ft. Worth-Arlington, Texas territory.

“We inherited all of the offset printing equipment and added a full digital printing suite,” Gray says. “The AlphaGraphics brand has allowed us to have a conversation with existing customers about the expanded capabilities, and it’s really starting to drive sales – our May was up about 65 percent year over year, and we are on target to hit nearly $60,000 in sales in June.

When the company’s top client found out that Covenant had been acquired, they looked into AlphaGraphics and asked to meet. They were doing workshop materials fulfillment in-house, and the demand on their staff’s time was out of control. Keith’s AG crew was able to take on the project, and now the conversation has shifted to other ways to grow the business.

Keith says another non-profit client called on a Tuesday needing 500 conference booklets designed and produced in less than 24 hours. The 16-page piece was graphic intensive, and even required a perforated tear-out card – but they got the job done. Now they’ve ordered 15,000 postcards and envelopes, and the brochures have become a recurring project.

“It’s all about making it happen, establishing relationships and building on those victories,” he says. “There’s a lot of loyalty to be built simply by making it happen for our clients.”

More often than not, customers are looking to AG not only to deliver a print job, but also to drive the creative side of a project. For example, a local title company wanted a leave-behind piece that would catch attention, and Keith came up with branded bubble gum labels that delivered the message: “Going the EXTRA mile.” The company has now become a Top 5 client.

Keith says he could have just purchased Covenant, since they were an independent printer, on his own – but if he had, he would have been in “major trouble.”

“If I didn’t have the structure that AlphaGraphics offers, I couldn’t have made it. The support has been phenomenal,” he says. “They haven’t coddled us, but they have provided the training and systems and processes that have put us in a position to grow the business. I know the power of the AlphaGraphics brand is the number-one reason why our biggest client is still with us is. We definitely chose the right team.

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