CEO Reflects as P.A. Hutchison Marks Major Milestone
Like most family printing companies, I do know it started in a garage 100 years ago, basically in letterpress as a commercial letterpress printer. In the '40s and '50s when offset came around, my grandfather, who was a second-generation [head of the company], was a photographer and was really excited about offset and halftone, and he ushered in the offset stage. We remained a commercial printer until my father, in the '70s, as computers started taking off, took the company in the direction of books and manuals. So there have been three pretty big metamorphoses of P.A. Hutchison in 100 years.
EXTRA: Can you give our readers an idea of the company's growth since it first launched?
HUTCHISON: ... We're on our fifth facility. Its first commercial storefront-type space was about 1,000 square feet, and we're over 150,000 square feet today. We have about 135 employees. And a lot of our growth has happened in the last 10 to 12 years. We've tripled in last 10, so it's a nice cherry on top to reach 100 while you've accelerated growth through some pretty tough economic times, and in an industry with overcapacity to be able to grow that way healthily.
EXTRA: What is the biggest change you've seen in the book manufacturing business since you've taken the helm of P.A. Hutchison?
HUTCHISON: ... Uncertainty. In the current market, I sense a lot of uncertainty from the competition, from our customers-both from the economy itself, from digital alternatives and everyone trying to figure out what the final direction will be for the next 20 years.
EXTRA: What are the biggest challenges you are facing now, and how are you addressing them?
HUTCHISON: I think, with our competition, dealing with the overcapacity issue is one of them, and we're trying to strengthen our sales team; we've doubled the size of our sales team in last 12 months.