PrintWeek Awards: SME of the Year - First 4 Print Finishing

Wednesday 19 October 2011

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First 4 Print Finishing continues to excel as a dedicated post-press company when many others have fallen by the wayside, and it has built upon the strong performance that saw it victorious in this category last year to win again in 2011.


It says investment is key and it has put its money where its mouth is, with six new saddlestitching lines, seven folding machines and the formation of a miniature folding and stitching department, all undertaken over recent years. These investments have taken the company from four to 80 staff, who man it 24 hours a day for both UK and EU print customers. This year, new records have been set, with the company’s largest-ever production run of 26m A5 booklets. The company also has an eye on helping its staff improve themselves and so has worked with City of Manchester College to enable its workforce to attain NVQ-level qualifications in print and mechanised binding. With the capability to produce 10m promotional items per day and with plans to invest further, it would be a brave pundit who ruled out an unprecedented hat-trick for the Lancashire company next year.

Commended – Plastic Card Services

Plastic Card Services narrowly missed out this time, although its ability to shine in the face of strong competition from China made it a close-run race for the judges. The company produces 50m cards per year for what is now an international client base, with exports going from zero to 25% of turnover over the past 12 months. With investment in new technology and progression with environmental policies as well, the Macclesfield company is clearly going from strength to strength.


  •  AJS Labels
  •  First 4 Print Finishing
  • Headley Brothers Digital
  • Plastic Card Services


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