Editor’s comment: Some sins are beyond redemption

Darryl Danielli
Monday, November 10, 2014

How long does it take to travel the road to redemption in print?

For Asia Pulp & Paper it seems to be a little over 18 months, although to fair to Aida Greenbury, the subject of this issue’s interview, she believes it’s a never-ending journey.

For the ‘new’ Kodak, which has just logged its first profitable quarter since emerging from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, it was a year, but again chief executive Jeff Clarke believes more needs to be done.

But what about a printing company that resurfaces after going into administration in a pre-pack led by its directors? How long before it’s forgiven for it’s perceived misdemeanours and how can it make good on the damage caused to its suppliers and, some cases, rivals?

In terms of reparations to the former group, the ball is firmly in the suppliers’ court: they can offer their forgiveness and continue to deal with the phoenixed company and try to recoup some of their losses or they can cut all links to the pre-packed company and take the moral high ground, but kiss goodbye to the cash, assuming it’s uninsured.

The latter is a ballsy move admittedly, but hopefully one (assuming it’s justified) that suppliers will have the confidence to increasingly adopt, now that the market is stronger.

When it comes to the damage caused to rivals, working on the assumption that part of the failed company’s problems were caused by unsustainable pricing, then in reality all the print company can do to make good is close their doors for good and release their capacity onto the market.

However, even that is unlikely to earn the forgiveness of the phoenixed firm’s peers, because in print it will always be seen as the greatest sin of all.

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