With Christmas and New Year now just a distant haze in the rear view mirror, we’re back and ready to take on 2017 with a revitalised sense of passion and urgency. Throughout December we spoke to many clients about their business plans for 2017 and the energy / excitement they brought to our meetings was invigorating to say the least.

Looking back at 2016, it was a huge year for Kaizen Print, both for our customers and ourselves. We had some sizeable developments in our business and as our name suggests, the continuous improvement was key to our success in 2016 and will be paramount for 2017 also. So how did we do it?

Investment in new printing equipment

2016 saw huge investment into new equipment for our print facility. We added a second digital press to our print family and with the new press effectively being twice as fast as our original machine, we tripled capacity from a printing perspective. The speed of the new digital presses also presented new opportunities to speed up our finishing department and so we installed a third laminator as well as an additional wire binding machine. We upgraded or added additional equipment in all areas of our business to ensure that the growth in our business was matched with equal or more capacity.

Investment in an extended print facility

If you’ve been in the Kaizen office before and after our renovations, you’ll have seen the drastically increased and much more aptly laid out print and sales office. The purchase of our new equipment prompted (read forced) an extension to our building. The new digital printer we purchased didn’t actually fit in the building and so we utilised the remaining outdoor space, by building an extension to the print hub. We’ve doubled our print floor and already filled it with new equipment, but the layout is a much better use of space and much more efficient from a printing perspective.

A graphic design studio

In March of last year, we launched our stand alone graphic design studio, Kaizen Brand Evolution (www.kaizenbrandevolution.com). While we have always provided an extremely high quality design service here in Belfast, our studio was often overlooked for projects suited to our capabilities and skills. The stigma attached with a “printers’ in-house design team” was an issue we overcame with the development of our sister brand Kaizen Brand Evolution. Our design studio has it’s own marketing, it’s own brand values and a completely separate client base away from Kaizen Print. It’s exciting to look back over the past 9 months and how much the studio has grown and continues to grow alongside Kaizen Print.

Increased product range

Our core products will always be popular due to their nature, however in 2016 we saw a huge increase in more bespoke printed goods, particularly closer to the end of the year. Calendars were a huge success for us and we sold more this year than in any year previously. In addition to that, Canvas printing was hugely popular right across the year. In the coming year we’re aiming to expand our product range and reintroduce

What does 2017 hold in-store for Kaizen Print?

We’ve big plans for 2017 and the growth of our business not only here in Belfast but also further afield is our top priority. We’re recruiting heavily right across all functions to ensure we can meet our demand and aggressive targets we place upon ourselves. What we promise though, is to provide an ever better service and quality products that are great value.

Aside from this, we’re fast outgrowing our current production hub here in Belfast and are in the market from a second premises. We hope to add some even more cutting edge printing equipment to our business this year and will need the additional space to house it.

Overall there are some fantastic projects and plans underway within the entire Kaizen family and all will be revealed in coming months. However we can only achieve these goals and make plans with customers and so we’d like to take this moment to again thank you for your continued custom from 2009 to now and beyond.