Doug Grant, CEO of Westamerica Communications, Describes Opportunities Abound at SGIA Expo
The SGIA Expo is a worthwhile and exciting show for new and returning attendees alike. Just ask Doug Grant, CEO of Westamerica Communications, a Lake Forest, CA-based commercial printer who is attending the expo this year for his second consecutive year. Grant explains that although Westamerica Communications has been a commercial printer for more than 40 years, the move into wide-format display graphics is a relatively new segment for the 110-employee company.
“Last year was my first to attend the SGIA show, and it was eye opening for me,” he says. “My head was spinning by the end of the show — so many opportunities to explore. I was a bit overwhelmed by all of the equipment, technology and substrate options to consider.”
This year, he has come armed with a new, experienced leadership team that will help the company be more “selective and strategic” in how they approach the show, including the types of technology they will explore.
“I’ll be attending the show with my operations director this year,” he explains. “We’ll be reviewing the latest technologies in grand-format laser/CNC cutting systems and hybrid flatbed printers. I’m also looking forward to connecting with a few of my peer group members from across the country, who are also attending the show.”
Although SGIA Expo has always been the go-to resource for companies investing in the specialty imaging industry, it has become the source for print professionals in the industrial, graphic, garment, textile, electronic, packaging and commercial printing segments looking to expand their offerings.
“Like the saying goes ‘if you’re not growing you’re dying.’” Grant says. “Most of the commercial printers I know have already dipped their toes in the large-format waters — some more successfully than others. At Westamerica, we’re going ‘all in,’ and we’re investing heavily in both personnel and technology in order to ride the wave of wide-format growth. Like most commercial printers, our existing client base is already purchasing wide-format display, environmental or event graphics. So that’s the natural place to start. This show provides a wealth of information and resources to help a printer get started or expand their capabilities.”