For the second year, the Wide-format Summit is slated to be an exciting networking and learning opportunity for printers from across the country. To be held this year at PGA National Resort in West Palm Beach, Florida, July 25-27, the agenda is packed with a wide range of educational sessions and keynote speakers, plus intensive small group case studies and the opportunity to have 1:1 meetings throughout the event.
The Summit is an invitation-only hosted attendee model, meaning all participants must qualify to participate, which brings a different atmosphere from any other event in the industry. Every person there is motivated and actively looking to grow their business in the wide-format space, making for great conversations across the board.
“Wide-format has been called the ultimate convergence technology because of its versatility, and that’s reflected in the inquiries we’re receiving from executives who would like to be among our hosted attendees this year,” says Steve Duccilli, conference co-chair of the Wide-format Summit and vice president, Wide-format and Industrial Printing, NAPCO Media. “We’re hearing from wide-format specialists, of course, but also from other types of commercial printers, in-plant shops looking to upgrade their equipment, even some industrial printers who are stepping up their wide-format capabilities. We’ll have an interesting and very diverse group at the Summit this year.”
Agenda at a Glance
There will be a lot of content packed into the three-day program, but here are a few highlights to get excited about.
First up is the opening keynote from Marco Boer, president of I.T. Strategies. This year, he’ll focus on “How the Lingering Crises Are Amplifying the Benefits of Wide-Format Printing,” which will focus heavily on the current supply chain challenges printers across the industry are facing, along with other challenges like labor shortages — and some of the ways shops can work to start alleviating some of those pain points. Additionally, he will look at how the current situation, with the pros of rebounding vertical markets and the negatives of supply chain issues and labor challenges, play into wide-format’s strengths. There is opportunity for PSPs in this market despite the challenges everyone is facing.
And on the topic of labor, Adriane Harrison, VP of Human Relations Consulting at PRINTING United Alliance, will lead a session titled “The Future is Creating a Flexible Workplace,” which will take a closer look at the specific challenges facing COOs, plant managers, and other wide-format execs as they rethink how to staff their operations and fundamentally structure their workforces. She will also go into what it means to have a flexible workplace, and what steps shops should be taking today to make themselves more attractive to job seekers and current employees alike.
Ever wonder what today’s wide-format print buyer actually looks like — and what they’re looking for? Lisa Cross, principal analyst for NAPCO Research, will present “Who Buys Wide-Format: How, from Whom, and Why,” to answer some of those questions. She will dive into the findings of an exclusive new market study of brand marketers and other print customers, giving a clearer picture of what today’s buyers are expecting from both their finished prints and the shops producing them.
For those looking to expand into the textile space, Kristen Dettoni, owner of Design Pool, will present “To B2B or to B2C? That Is the Question for Your Textile Printing Strategy.” Dettoni brings a unique perspective, having worked in both the B2B and B2C spaces, so this session, which will take a closer look at some of the most lucrative textile opportunities for wide-format printers, will be highly informative, with ideas of what spaces to target for the most potential business growth.
To close out the event, Denise Gustavson, editor-in-chief of Wide-format Impressions and co-chair of the Wide-format Summit; and Andy Paparozzi, chief economist, PRINTING United Alliance, will cover “Where We Are Now and How We Plan to Grow into 2023.” This session will contrast the current print industry economic data with insights on the trends driving the industry forward, not only exploring the industry as it is right now, but where it’s going next, leaving attendees with the information they’ll need to plan for growth in the next 12-18 months.
And these are just a few of the sessions that will be highlighted throughout the event. “Our industry is facing a unique combination of challenges and opportunities right now,” Duccilli notes. “The vertical markets for wide-format printing that were so hard hit during the pandemic are rebounding and morphing in ways that open up exciting new business possibilities. But at the same time, printers are dealing with unprecedented issues in their supply chains and workforce, even as the competition in our space continues to grow. We’ll be exploring this dichotomy throughout our educational program.”
If you’re interested in attending this year’s Wide-format Summit, email email@example.com or visit www.wideformatsummit.com/attend/ to fill out the qualification form.
“We were thrilled to bring NAPCO’s unique Summit model to wide-format printing last year, and based on our exit surveys, attendees and sponsors were just as enthusiastic about the experience,” Duccilli says. “There really isn’t another forum in this industry that delivers the same combination of top-notch education, deep-dive networking, and open dialogue among all the constituents in the market. We are looking forward to seeing you there.”