Big Changes at SGIA
At the 2018 SGIA Expo press conference held just before the show doors opened on Thursday, Ford Bowers, President & CEO of SGIA, noted that we are on the cusp of a new beginning for the association, and for the industry as a whole. “We are broadening our view of the industry,” Bowers noted. “We want to address the breath of the industry.”
Those changes come in several forms. First and foremost, this marks the last time this event will take place as SGIA Expo — in 2019 it will be reborn as PRINTING United, a bigger, better event that will bring together all facets of the printing industry under one roof.
Beyond PRINTING United, SGIA also purchased the Graphics of the Americas (GOA) show, in a deal completed this past summer. The show, Bowers explained, will take a hiatus in 2019 and will be reborn for the Latin American and Caribbean markets in 2020, reimagined to better serve those markets.
Moving forward, Bowers sees a strong advantage to collaborating and partnering with other associations in the print industry, leveraging the strengths of each to the benefits of all members across all segments. He sees convergence accelerating, along with more consolidation as both printers and associations look to find opportunities to come together.
As an industry, Bowers said, we are far too fragmented, with printers staying in narrow segments, and associations following suit, limiting the power and voice that can be brought to bear for things like legislative initiatives. “We’re pulling below our weight,” Bowers said. “Something has to drive us together to work more cohesively so we can address the issues for the next generation.”