Premier Paper is offering to fund membership of the IPIA for its active customers as part of a return to work support effort.
The IPIA has welcomed what it calls an “extraordinary step.” IPIA president Mike Roberts says: “The IPIA Council is both proud and excited by this generous initiative from Premier as it enables us to provide even more support to the industry as we face some of our most difficult challenges.” The IPIA has been active in eliciting government support for the industry, including ensuring that print could be considered an essential industry.
It has also produced a wide range of material explaining government policies and the actions that printers need to take to be compliant, how to apply rules on social distancing, furlough conditions and more. Premier Paper has supplied these to help its customers, opening its eyes to the effectiveness of the IPIA’s material.
This is noted by Premier marketing director Dave Jones, who explains: “During the pandemic, the IPIA was not only very proactive representing the print sector’s interests with the Government but also extremely efficient at providing timely information and guidance for its member community. We wanted to best support our customers’ return to work and decided that giving them a year’s free membership to IPIA’s Lite scheme would be of most value.”
This a £25 a month subscription offering printers access to core business support benefits, including discounts offered by external partners, lower rates for training, events and access to the Sourcing Bridge, its email based service matching suppliers with companies looking for their services..
In order to access other membership benefits, printers would need to upgrade to Manufacturer status. These are defined as printers “that can offer a service to buyers and resellers of print on a trade basis.” Costs are turnover dependent. Below £1 million, the rate is £60 a month; above this the cost is £85 a month.
The association’s membership numbers have remained resilient during the lockdown period, losing relatively few and no more than would be expected due to attrition and acquisitions. A number of companies had already renewed their membership before Premier tabled its offer. This is expected to boost member numbers.
Jones adds: “It has never been more important for print businesses to have a credible source of advice and information that they can rely on, and a platform where good ideas and experiences can be shared. The IPIA continues to provide opportunities to raise the profile of the print sector through its various events and creative initiatives, and it has also worked tirelessly over the last few months to support our industry through this turbulent time.”
Premier's sales teams will be presenting the value of IPIA membership and the campaign is already finding some success with printers already signing up. The move is part of Premier giving back to the industry, providing tools to help the customer cope with the crisis and stay in business to remain customers of the paper merchant.
This week the swathes of assistance move online with the IPIA producing a series of online educational seminars which began on Friday and continue this week under the Punchbackprint banner.
Some 80 delegates participated at the end of the week, from a cross section of the industry, with more than 250 registered for this week’s sessions already. There is still time to register.