Bradley Group managing director Peter Bradley has certainly had an action-packed 2017, including the group's first M&A deals and the setting up of a new site. Looking ahead to 2018 he's hoping the industry can make greater efforts to attract young talent into print.
What’s at the top of your Christmas wish list this year?
A rebound in the pound! You forget how much we buy from Europe until the exchange rate makes it more expensive.
What trend do you think 2017 will be remembered for?
For us as a business it would be the LE-UV, I know it’s not new but it’s new for us. We also had the first Heidelberg LE-UV press in the UK.
What do you think will represent the single biggest opportunity for printers in 2018 and why?
Unfortunately, I think what represents the greatest opportunity is also the biggest threat for printers, the continued consolidation of the industry for those left. The market is still over-supplied but I think by the end of the year there will be less people again.
What do you think will represent the single biggest threat for printers in 2018 and why?
What’s the one thing that the industry should do more of, or do better, in 2018?
One thing the industry should do more of in 2018 is collaborate. I believe one way David can beat Goliath in this industry is if David is willing to collaborate. What does the print industry need to do better? Attract young and bright people into the industry, whilst it’s good to have experience, it’s hard to see where the next generation of print business leaders are coming from.
What was your biggest disappointment in 2017?
I think all printers will be in agreement with the rise in raw material costs being the biggest disappointment. It promotes instability for all.
What was your highlight of 2017?
The opening of our brand new plant in Liverpool. We now have nearly 40 new staff in this branch and we’re still growing! Entering the M&A sphere for the first time, we learned a lot and created the Bradley Group. On a personal highlight being added to PrintWeek Power 100 as the youngest entry, it is good to be recognised by peers in the industry.
What are your hopes for 2018?
Continue to grow our business profitably and responsibly. Meet more interesting characters along the way.
What was the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
Whether you think you can’t or whether you think you can, you’re right. I think Henry Ford originally said this.
What was the most important thing that you learnt in 2017?
The importance of human capital. Getting good people around you is imperative. Anyone with a cheque book can buy equipment, building a team is much more difficult but more important.
What if anything will you do differently in 2018?
I will try and be more patient.
What’s your favourite Christmas cracker joke?
I went to a Zoo the other day but it only had one animal and that animal was a dog… it was a Shih Tzu.
What was the best Christmas present you ever received?
A motorised off road go-kart for me and my three brothers, what could go wrong? That or my first Manchester United shirt.
Are you making any New Year's resolutions? If so, what?
Be a better planner.