Cactus Graphics’ new PrintIQ MIS went live this week after several months of development. The investment is intended to open up new revenue streams for the Dover-based printer.
Richard Archer: “When we started Cactus we wanted more revenue streams”
The new MIS has enabled Cactus Graphics to open its services directly to consumers via a Vpress online storefront; the new system will likewise streamline the ordering process for its existing B2B customers.
Cactus’ commercial director, Richard Archer, told Printweek that with the new system the firm would soon be able to take orders 24/7.
“The MIS is going to speed up the process; you won’t have individuals dealing with one panel or one post, we’ve got a conduit for someone to come in and order something without any human interaction.”
Being only a few days old, there remain a few wrinkles to iron out, a natural process for any new MIS, according to Archer.
He said: “You can plan, and set it up, but you basically have to put your boots on and jump in to find all the bugs.”
The MIS has just been one of Cactus’ recent investments targeting new customers.
In late September, the firm bought a new Mimaki UJF-6042 MkIIe UV LED flatbed from reseller CMYUK.
The new Mimaki features the ‘kebab’ attachment, which has allowed the company to win extra business by printing on a variety of cylindrical objects such as pens, signage poles and bottles.
The additional capability has helped Cactus to target corporate marketing departments frustrated by long lead times from overseas printers, or customers without much storage who require items on demand, according to Archer.
The firm’s growth plan will likewise see it move in December to another site in Dover, and set up an in-person store for consumers.
“We took the view when we started Cactus that we wanted more revenue streams in,” said Archer.
Hence, he added, the online B2C e-commerce, the shop front, and the new Mimaki. This diversification – both in product and in customer pool – has come on top of previous investments like the firm’s Kongsberg CNC cutter and 2.5m wide format Agfa Anapurna UV printer, both installed in 2020.
Cactus has nine staff covering print, design and installations.
Archer said: “We’re lucky that we have litho minders that have gone into digital, and the skill set has crossed over through the years; but then we’ve coupled old skill sets with bringing in new employees that are straight out of university or college.
“It’s quite a deprived area, so the more we can invest in new talent in the local area, [bring them] into the business and give them experience from our experienced employees, it’s a great dynamic.”