The 12-strong team at YPS joined the Roland DG network of approved dealers on 1 September. From its base in Killingworth, Newcastle, YPS will focus primarily on Roland’s TrueVIS range – specifically, its VG and SG series of printer-cutters.
According to YPS managing director Garry Brown, Roland’s focus on “training and inspiring youngsters” to gain skills and experience in print technology was a key factor in agreeing the deal. YPS already has partnerships with local schools to encourage pupils into print.
“It’s been about two years of Roland courting us for a partnership until we got to a point where we wondered when we should stop flirting and get down to it,” said Brown. “Roland has a clear focus on making sure there are young people coming into print with its academy.
“We are committed to making sure the skills are available for our customers as the industry continues to thrive. We have a very loyal customer base within the graphics, litho and screen print sectors, and being appointed as a Roland reseller is a natural progression for YPS.”
Roland’s VG and SG families are designed to integrate printing and cutting into the same device at sizes of up to 64in (1.6m). They include Bluetooth controls so devices, which run the newly developed TrueVIS inkset, can be managed from a smartphone or tablet.
Rob Goleniowski, head of sales for Roland, said that its partnership with YPS will “serve customers in the north of England and Scotland well” and said he looked forward to the “many successes” they hope to share.
YPS already distributes hardware from Mimaki, Vivid and Epson and consumables from the likes of Decal and Metamark to customers all over the UK, though Brown said 80% of its customers are in Scotland or the north of England. Customers include Gateshead-based decal and printed component specialists Gate7, and Edwardthompson printers in Sunderland.
On 8 November, YPS, celebrating its 10th anniversary, will host an open day on its premises bringing together its partner schools with customers both existing and potential.