The Way Business Is Moving published by
Issue Date: June 2007

New printing company hits the ground running with two multimillion rand contracts

14 June 2007

A new company launched within the Bromide Technologies Group, Managed Print Solutions (MPS), has already signed two multimillion rand projects. The deals include a nationwide South African employment corporation and a national food and beverage company.
MPS was created both in response to the need for more transparent, affordable and effective printing solutions and in a move to capitalise on the advent of digital convergence. “Digital convergence is often thrown around in the IT market without much truth or value to it,” says MPS director, Barry Muller. “Hewlett Packard has, however, developed printers and peripheral components that are fully convergent with the existing corporate communications infrastructure, to the point where these machines interface seamlessly up to an ERP level. As a result of our partnership with HP, we are ideally positioned to revolutionise printing in South Africa, because it can for the first time be fully measured and controlled. Our first major contract was won based on an immediate saving to the client of 27% a year, keeping in mind that their printing costs run very deep into the millions.
“In fact, the savings would have been just under 40%, had it not been for the massive penalties that are involved with copier and printer contracts in South Africa,” Muller continues. “The inflexibility and non-transparency of these very same contracts will serve our growth well, as MPS is the first company that will offer clients a 100% transparent solution, based only on the printed page. The client will tell us when they want to print it, where they want to print it and how many you need, and we will implement and manage the technology to make it possible. More importantly – and this is crucial – we will monitor your printing costs on an on-going basis and make recommendations to keep the solution as cost-effective as possible.”
The company maintains that it will easily deliver a 20% saving on average to companies with existing printing contracts, or a significant increase in value and efficiency for the same amount spent.
“Very few companies in South Africa today know what their real printing costs are,” says Muller. “They know what their contracts cost, and the claimed cost per page upon which that is based, but research has shown that the majority of companies are spending 20% more than they should on their printing output costs.
“A few years ago, companies copied 80% of their documentation and printed 20%. Now that the ratio is 80% printed and 20% copied, copier suppliers have to quickly migrate into the printing arena, however they do not have the networking and IT experience and skills to arrive at a converged technology solution that offers full measurability,” he continues.
MPS is a member of the HP IPSS programme, which enables the company to both sign contracts for the supply and management of HP equipment, as well as to act as the fulfilment partner in contracts won by HP themselves. The company was designed to run on a lean base of core personnel, but has the full force of the Bromide Technologies Group – which is also an HP Gold Partner – behind it when needed. This translates into around 40 highly skilled IT engineers and technicians that are available when required, without burdening the company’s operating costs. Through Hewlett Packard’s alliance with SAP, CISCO, Microsoft, Intel and the like, their printing and related equipment will constantly be developed to continue contributing value as a seamless component of a company’s IT and communications infrastructure.
“Every machine has a duty cycle which, if exceeded, generally costs more in maintenance than to add another machine. Conversely, one machine too many or positioned where it is not needed is equally detrimental. While coming to a full understanding of a client’s business and their printing needs may take longer than the traditional sell-install-forget approach, it will deliver obvious long-term cost savings and operational efficiency improvements,” Muller concludes.

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