Quad/Graphics - Performance Through Innovation
Joel Quadracci, President and CEO:
If you look at what's going on with media over the last many years there's been this whole explosion of digital technology.
And that sort of brought about this whole question of media what's happening in media?
Is print dead?
Do shift everything to digital?
"Innovative People Driving Print" was our tagline.
But a tagline is just an expression of what the brand means today in light of what's going on around you.
We realize that hey we need to change the tagline to really reflect that it's about driving innovation no matter which way you're marketing.
The logo was the same.
This has been the same since 1971 which was really the beginning of what we call chapter one.
Building plants one brick at a time, one customer at a time, and becoming a formidable player.
We then entered into chapter 2 with the great recession but also with the explosion of digital media where we became a consolidator of the industry which expanded our know-how and expanded how we could help our customers in today's context.
The days of just being a printer are gone.
Innovation is about how to use this mobile device with print.
Things that we're doing with mobile can interact with packaging as well.
We have our own technology company.
We innovate better processes through better products on a printing press.
We innovate on distribution so that you all pay less postage.
QuadMed has been around for 20 plus years where we do all our own primary care for all our own employees.
Well today we have over 200,000 patients outside of Quad.
There's no finish line in business.
Well there is but you want to reach.
And my father used to say, where are we going from here?
I don't know, I'll tell you when we get there.
That's a very true statement because in this world you don't know.
It's changing so quickly.
But what you do know is you have to follow the innovation that you have, and the know-how that you've created, and look for the opportunity to use it in places you never thought you would.
QUAD/GRAPHICS: FINDING A BETTER WAY
You may not know the name Quad/Graphics, but you see and touch – and even hear and smell – our products every day. Quad prints many of the magazines, catalogs and direct mail advertising pieces you find in your mailbox. We also print the majority of the retail advertising inserts that ride along in your Sunday newspaper. Oh! And those paperboard cutouts and displays at the grocery store? We design and manufacture those, too. As well as oversized floor graphics, high-end packaging, scent strips on printed perfume ads, videos that leap to life off a printed page using a mobile app, and more.
In essence, Quad is in your mailbox, on your kitchen shelves, in your favorite retail stores, on your mobile devices … everywhere you are.
Quad/Graphics was founded in 1971 with a mission to do things differently and better. Because of that "can do" spirit, our company has grown from a scrappy little upstart into a leading global provider of print and media solutions. Today, in addition to being a proud printer, we also help our clients connect with you, the consumer, across a variety of media channels – delivering the personalized messages you want to receive, when and where you like to receive them.
The innovation that was paramount to Quad's survival in our early years remains our hallmark. Although we are a high-tech company, we succeed the old-fashioned way: through honesty, integrity, hard work, and putting people and relationships first. Quad's remarkable growth is a powerful testament to our inimitable values-driven culture, visionary leadership team and, above all, dedicated people – almost 25,000 employees worldwide who take exceptional pride in their work and are wholly invested in finding a better way for our clients, for our company, and for each other.
Working together with our clients, Quad is delivering on its promise of Performance through Innovation.
Quad Graphics Chairman, President and CEO Joel Quadracci describing the transformation in digital book printing.
Joel Quadracci, President and CEO:
The reading experience of a book, whether your child or an adult, it takes you to a different place and it allows you to expand your way of thinking.
It teaches you to think.
The challenge the book industry has is not that everything is going to the Kindle or the iPad, that's what a lot of people thought was happening, but you do have ebooks that have kind of leveled off quite a bit and print books continue to grow.
We print up 100,000 of a book.
Hopefully it sells, but it may sit in a warehouse for a long time and ultimately a lot of it ends up not selling or getting, you know, destroyed.
So what we're doing with our digital platform, I think is very unique and different than what we've done in the past.
Let's replenish as you need more.
They can start to get rid of warehouses.
They have hundreds of millions of dollars worth of inventory tied up in their warehouses at any given point around the world.
And so maybe it's not another run at fifty thousand, maybe it's Amazon got two orders today, it sold them out, so today, will print two more books that ship out tonight and get back into their supply chain right away.
And so the world is really changing into a just-in-time, you know, automated trigger, so that the publisher just presses a button, and it gets queued out to the press and off we go, and the press man just keeps it running, and the next book comes, the next book comes, and they're all different.
What Quad is very focused on is the concept of integrated, connected personalization that matters.
Really one to one, the right product per content to the right person at the right time, in a cost efficient way that can connect across multiple channels.
This technology allows you to do a lot more in terms of variability where the professor chose the content out of a whole masterfile of content then he can choose from because he wants to personalize his course directly to what he likes to teach.
200 pages and the next might be 500 pages.
And today it's evolved into, actually, high quality four-color images that can be variably printed on the fly.
I think the Quad secret sauce is, really it's about the culture that we have.
Using all the talent you have from different parts of the company and you pull them together to make a new opportunity.
And that's what we've done, and that's why we felt very comfortable making a very big play into our large investment in digital presses.
The whole world of variability along with the ability to kind of impact the supply chain is really going to dynamically change the industry in terms of how our books operate.
Books are here stay. They're not leaving.
MAILING INDUSTRY EXPERTS
A great deal of the innovation for which Quad is known focuses on product mailing and distribution.
As the hemisphere’s largest mailer of catalogs and magazines, Quad takes leadership responsibility on postal issues. Our company's publishing and marketing clients rely on us to get their printed pieces into the homes and into the hands of consumers – on time, in good condition and at the lowest possible cost. Thus, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is crucial to the success of Quad's business.
For most Quad clients, mailing and distribution costs are typically two to three times that of their print expense. Yet, printed mailpieces remain a highly effective marketing tool because they deliver results. In fact printed mailpieces deliver even better results when used in combination with other media channels. After all, no channel is an island; each influences and impacts the other. How many times have you received a print catalog or seen a magazine advertisement and then gone online to order a product or get additional information? That’s the power of printed mailpieces.
The USPS provides significant postal discounts for larger volumes of mail going to the same or nearby address. It makes sense: a high volume of mailpieces destined for an individual postal carrier’s route or neighborhood sortation level (the best possible sort level) takes the USPS less time to sort, process and deliver than mail presorted only at the 5-digital ZIP code level.
Quad is a pioneer in technology and processes to help marketers and publishers, even those with small mail volumes, minimize their total costs. The company has one of the most efficient and innovative printing, finishing and distribution networks in the industry, with state-of-the-art automation technologies, logistics and data processes to obtain the best possible postal rates.
Enhanced Interactive Print with Quad Graphics
Joel Quadracci, President and CEO:
Reading is a very casual and engaging experience.
One of the remarkable things about magazines, catalogs, and books is how adaptable they are and how easily we interact with them.
New technologies are also engaging and adaptable, and better yet can be used to make print interactive.
Interactive print extends the reader's experience by connecting printed content to mobile, to view a video, instantly purchase, or share through social media.
But many interactive print technologies require the reader to maintain device proximity to the page, unnatural, and for longer digital experiences, uncomfortable.
Actable interactive print changes all of that.
Now the interactive print connection is just like the rest of the reading experience, natural, casual, and engaging, an enjoyable brand experience.
Quad Graphics interactive Print Solutions provides clients with an integrated offering that includes interactive strategy, creative design, and robust analytics, to measure response and create engaging print-to-digital connections that drive business results.
The late Harry V. Quadracci, company founder, served on a USPS panel to share ideas for future direction as we approached the 21st century and digital communications were gaining momentum. Joel Quadracci, Quad’s current Chairman, President & CEO, and other Quad leaders have testified before Congressional committees and the Postal Regulatory Commission to ensure the USPS remains a practical option for Quad's clients. Quad also helps promote innovative technologies by participating in USPS pilot programs for products that improve mail efficiencies and costs, and contain interactive features such as QR codes and enhanced augmented reality.
Quad has twice received the USPS Partnership for Growth Award, honoring our long-standing commitment to driving technological innovation and supporting mail volume growth.
The Quad Postal Conference, now in its third decade, attracts marketing and publishing clients, representatives from the USPS, the Postal Regulatory Commission and other government agencies, as well as other stakeholders in the mailing industry. Three Postmaster Generals have participated in these thought leadership symposiums, including current PMG Megan Brennan.
Working together in strong partnership, Quad and the USPS are helping keep mail a viable, cost-effective solution for marketers and publishers.
ALL IN TIME
Read more about Quad’s heritage and contributions to the printing and mailing industries.
Come explore Quad’s journey during its first four decades-plus of existence.
Company Founder Harry V. Quadracci’s enterprising roots date back to his paternal grandfather, Virgilio (standing behind the counter). Virgilio opened this Italian grocery store in Racine, Wisconsin, in 1923. Harry’s father – also named Harry and later called Harry Senior (shown second from left) – started his own printing business behind the store in 1930, marking the beginning of the Quadracci family’s printing heritage. Harry Senior worked after school and on weekends, printing jobs he solicited from local businesses. He called his business the Standard Printing Company.
When the grocery store went bankrupt during The Great Depression from having extended credit to customers who could not pay, Harry Senior helped repay the debt printing simple jobs on this press called the Belle City Queen. For every $20 print job he sold to his father's store creditors, he charged $15 and asked that the $5 balance be applied to what was owed. Today, the press stands in the lobby of Quad/Graphics’ corporate headquarters in Sussex, Wisconsin.
Harry Senior continued to operate his print shop until he and William A. Krueger founded the W.A. Krueger Company in 1934. The tiny two-man shop eventually grew to become one of the nation's largest publicly held printing companies. Harry Senior's son Harry V. Quadracci started working odd jobs at Krueger as a teenager. Pictured here in 1959, Harry (at left) and his brother Len help Harry Senior celebrate Krueger's 25th anniversary.
After completing his law degree at Columbia University, 26-year-old Harry joined his father at W.A. Krueger in 1962, working in a variety of management capacities, including general counsel. Through his experience there, Harry developed key management philosophies based on employee trust and empowerment – philosophies that would later be the foundation of his own business.
Disillusioned by the divide between management and employees at Krueger, Harry resigned to start his own company, one built on close, trusting relationships. With a $35,000 second mortgage on his home, capital raised from a handful of people who believed in him, and 11 co-founders who made a courageous leap of faith, Harry launched Quad/Graphics on July 13, 1971.
Their goal was to find “a better way” … of putting ink on paper, taking care of customers and, especially, taking care of employees and their families. Together, they agreed to build a company like no other. A company with a soul.
They set up shop in an abandoned millwork factory in rural Pewaukee, Wisconsin, just west of Milwaukee. The company’s survival hinged on a rented press, a borrowed binder and three rolls of paper.
Those first years were lean and contracts were few. But with perseverance, an entrepreneurial spirit and a passion for innovation — characteristics that continue to distinguish Quad from other printers — the fledgling company hung on. The company kept its single press going with jobs no other printer would take.
In January 1972, Quad ran its first job, Investormagazine. Fishing Facts, a full-color monthly, soon followed and became Quad's first national newsstand title. The magazine's inexperienced publisher often turned to Harry for guidance. When Fishing Facts was late with its pages, Quad employees knew they'd find Harry kneeling on the floor of the publisher's office helping with layouts.
Employees worked long hours and Harry was concerned about the time they were missing with their families. In 1972, he held the first employee picnic on the shores of his Wisconsin lake home. The employee picnic has been a tradition at Quad ever since, now entertaining tens of thousands of Quad employees and their families from coast to coast, as well as in Europe and Latin America.
The company founded its first division, Duplainville Transport (now part of Quad/Transportation Services).
Quad landed a contract from a highly respected publisher of art books. The Art of Walt Disney was Quad's first experience with high-quality, four-color work and gave the company instant credibility. The book sold 50,000 copies in its first year, which was almost unheard of for an art book.
The company added its second press in 1975, a new Harris Graphics M1000 web offset press that could print at up to 1,200 feet per minute. The press was a huge financial risk for the fledgling company. A makeshift time capsule was buried in the concrete pad where the new press would be installed. (No early photos of this press exist. Pictured here, Harry and employees celebrate the installation of the company’s third press, the M-3, in 1978.)
Quad established an Employee Stock Ownership Plan so that all employees can be owners, a core tenet of the company. Here, Harry (in shirt and tie) poses with employee owners on the pressroom floor.
One of the most brutal winters on record combined with desperate shortages of natural gas over the winter of 1976-1977. Many of the hardest hit states shut down schools and nonessential plants so there would be enough energy to heat hospitals and homes. That put one of Newsweek magazine's regular printers temporarily out of commission. Newsweek approached the upstart little printer in Wisconsin. Quad altered its press schedule to make room for the covers of Newsweek's February 7 issue. But a snowstorm prevented the publisher from flying in the cover film to Milwaukee. When Newsweek's associate production manager called Quad to apologize, he was astonished to learn that the cover was already on press. Despite the storm, a Quad employee had driven to Chicago to retrieve the film. Impressed, the newsweekly continued to award spot work to Quad.
The turning point for Quad came in September 1979, when Newsweek awarded a multi-million-dollar contract for most of its Midwest work. The popular national publication was sold on the company's innovation and can-do attitude. Like its first work for Newsweek, Quad owed a lot to the flukes of Mother Nature. A January 14, 1979, blizzard dumped almost two feet of snow on Milwaukee and closed the airport. Newsweek's plane was waiting in Arkansas to get the film to the plant. Quad's presses and stitchers sat idle as the crews anxiously awaited the film. Undaunted by the blizzard, Finishing Vice President Frank Arndorfer, who had a pilot's license, found an open airport and rented a single-engine prop plane. He located another Wisconsin airport where Newsweek's plane could land. The two pilots landed one after another on the runway and exchanged the package of film. Newsweek was on press within a few hours.
One factor influencing Newsweek's five-and-a-half year contract was Quad's commitment to invest in groundbreaking page binding and mailing technology. Although it was a financial risk, Quad purchased a new binding machine (known as a saddle stitcher) that used a rudimentary computer and scanner to apply labels to covers in ZIP code order. That saved labor and got Newsweek into the mailstream sooner.
Newsweek launched Quad's national reputation. Within short order, Quad also gained contracts for Time and U.S. News & World Report, making it one of only a handful of companies to print all three of the country's major newsweeklies.
Quad launched QuadTech, the industry's first research and development subsidiary. The division specializes in automated control systems for press (shown here) and finishing equipment.
Company Founder Harry V. Quadracci launched Camp Quad in 1980 to teach clients about catalog and magazine production. Since then, thousands of clients have attended the unique educational experience. Today's Camp Quad is a marketing thought leadership symposium for marketers and publishers to share best practices in communicating across print, digital, mobile and other rapidly evolving media channels.
Quad started up its first perfect binder in 1980 (pictured here). Instead of stapling (aka stitching) pages together, perfect binding glues the edges along the spine, with a finished edge like a book. The result is a more polished, upscale look.
To celebrate Quad's 10th anniversary, Company Founder Harry V. Quadracci and Quad managers staged a surprise for the 800 employees and guests at the annual holiday party. A rousing takeoff on the popular Gilbert and Sullivan comic opera "H.M.S. Printafour" featured playful lyrics that traced Harry's humble beginnings and the company's rise to success. This surprise performance became a holiday party tradition known as the Management Revue, which always culminated with the singing of the company song, “Quad/Graphics Blue.” According to Harry: “All year long you perform for us. Tonight we perform for you.”
On the company's 10th anniversary, Company Founder Harry V. Quadracci urged employees to "think small" – still a guiding mantra today – and never lose sight of what fueled the company's growth: close personal relationships with clients and with each other. That year, the tradition of recognizing employees as company founders was established to mark the then-monumental achievement of 10 years in business. An enduring tradition, employees with 10 years of service to the company are admitted to the Founder's Circle and honored with a Founder's ring, similar to Harry's, pictured here.
Even after 10 years in business, Quad realized few people in the publishing world had yet to hear of the small Wisconsin printer. So, the company launched its first advertising campaign with a poster asking, "Where in the World is Pewaukee?" a parody of the famous Saul Steinberg 1976 classic New Yorker cover showing New York City as the center of the world. The ads, which ran in the New York Times and other publications, put Quad's hometown on the map and played a key role in increasing the company's business.
Quad debuted inline inkjetting on its Finishing equipment to print addresses on mailing labels. Using 1980s dot-matrix printing technology, tiny droplets of ink were jetted from small apertures to create an image formed of overlapping dots. Today, Quad is still at the leading edge of inkjet technology (pictured here) which enables publishers and marketers to turn their data into highly personalized messages – even one-on-one communications – with consumers.
From day one, Quad has believed that ordinary people could do extraordinary things when given the tools to succeed. The company invests in education and career development programs to help every employee grow, personally and professionally. Education is the fuel that powers Quad's legendary innovative spirit.
A press room education program began in 1982 to help employees more rapidly advance their skills and career. The following year, the program was expanded and eventually morphed into an entire division called Quad/Education. Company Founder Harry Quadracci especially enjoyed teaching employees print technology (pictured here). Believing in people and giving them the resources to grow are enduring Quad values to this day.
Quad's "can-do" attitude has led to many industry firsts. Frustrated by the lack of consistent, high-quality inks, the company launched its own ink-manufacturing operations, Chemical Research\Technology in 1983. Today, Quad is one of the largest ink manufacturers in the nation.
Quad launched its Administrative Training Program (now called the Corporate Training Program) in 1983. Harry envisioned the program as a "graduate degree in printing" for future company leaders. In the early days, the group was small enough that Harry often invited them out to his house to take a break from their demanding work schedules. (Pictured here, program members and graduates calculate how many people can fit in a hot tub.) Having fun is, in fact, a corporate value. By 2015, almost 1,000 corporate trainees have participated in the program and alumni serve as leaders in every area of Quad’s operations. Even current Chairman, President & CEO Joel Quadracci (Harry’s son) is an alum.
In 1983, Harry and his unique management style captured the cover of Inc. magazine – and the imaginations of its readers. With “Management by Walking Away,” employees are empowered to problem solve and develop essential leadership skills.
Keeping employees healthy always has been a priority at Quad. The company built its first onsite fitness center in its original Pewaukee, Wisconsin, plant in 1983. Today, the company has fitness centers in multiple printing plants.
The Windhover Foundation, established in 1983 and funded today by the Harry V. Quadracci family, supports a variety of nonprofit ventures. Pictured here, Harry and his wife Betty Ewens Quadracci enjoy an exhibit at the Milwaukee Art Museum. In addition to arts centers, other beneficiaries of the Windhover Foundation include hospices, women’s programs, libraries, playgrounds, parks and arenas.
Quad was first named one of the nation's top employers in 1984, when it was included in the book, The 100 Best Companies to Work for in America. The company has made repeated appearances on the list since Fortune began its annual ranking in 1987.
Although its future was far from secure, the company expanded rapidly across the United States and globally, investing in the industry’s most advanced equipment and technology. Quad broke ground on its Saratoga Springs, N.Y., plant, pictured here, in 1984. It was the company's third plant and the first one on the East Coast, giving Quad close proximity to major population centers. Time magazine began rolling off the presses when the plant opened the following year. Today Quad has almost 70 facilities across the United States, Europe and Latin America.
Quad earned Newsweek's Printer of the Year Award for the first time, a designation the company never relinquished. Time, Inc., also has honored Quad with its Printer of the Year award numerous times.
Playboy Enterprises President Christie Hefner joined Quad to celebrate the startup of Playboy magazine, with a monthly print run of 6.2 million. The magazine was finished on a perfect binder, which glues pages together along the spine. For the first time in Playboy history, the centerfold model did not have staples across her navel.
To woo the Playboy contract, Quad invested more than $50 million in gravure presses and other new equipment. Gravure print technology uses engraved copper cylinders that lay the ink directly on the paper. Gravure creates a more brilliant image, particularly on delicate flesh tones – a vital consideration for Playboy. To house the gravure operation, Quad bought an empty canning factory in Lomira, a small Wisconsin farming community, and then completed a series of expansions. Today, at more than 2 million square feet, the Lomira plant is the single largest printing plant under one roof in the world.
Noted feminist Gloria Steinem, who printed Ms. magazine with Quad, started up the presses at the Lomira plant grand opening. When a reporter asked her how she felt about printing her magazine on the same presses as Playboy, she responded, "I think it is only fitting that the same presses that print the poison also print the antidote."
The company founded Quad/Creative, an in-house design group, now part of BlueSoho, the company’s integrated marketing and technology firm. For many years, Quad/Creative was run by the late Betty Quadracci, a co-founder of the company.
In 1986, Quad debuted the industry's first multi-mailer – a machine that combined magazines from multiple clients into a single huge mail stream, which would then qualify for postal discounts. This technology breakthrough enabled even smaller mailers to qualify for postal discounts. Today, Quad clients producing letter-sized mail, magazines and catalogs benefit from the multi-mail program, which is better known as co-mail solutions.
Quad began printing Architectural Digest in 1991. The company’s capabilities afforded the publication the sophisticated, upscale look for which it is known. Here, Company Founder Harry V. Quadracci (left) celebrates with Architectural Digest executives as the first pages come off the press.
Company Founder Harry V. Quadracci took a bold approach to improving the quality and cost-effectiveness of employee healthcare by founding QuadMed, a provider of onsite primary care services to employees and their families. Rather than being a purchaser of health insurance, the company now is an investor in employee health and productivity. Today QuadMed provides workplace health solutions for employers across the country.
The Windhover Scholar Program was established to provide financial assistance for employee's children for whom a post-secondary education might be out of reach. The program is funded by the Windhover Foundation, which is supported by the Harry V. Quadracci family. Kayla Kuehl (pictured here at her college graduation with her father) is one of the thousands of young adults who have been able to fulfill their educational goals with help from the scholarship program. Kayla's father Steve worked for Quad for 36 years, retiring in 2014 just as Kayla accepted a full-time job at Quad after graduating college. Many generations of families work at Quad, reinforcing its family feel.
The company launched Quad/Photo in 1990. Quad was one of the first commercial printers to offer digital photography services. Today, Quad has multiple photo studios across the country, including dedicated client studios.
Wisconsin's then-Lieutenant Governor Scott McCallum, Company Founder Harry V. Quadracci and Harry's father (aka Harry Senior) celebrated with kids at the 1991 daycare opening at Quad's Sussex, Wisconsin, headquarters. After his retirement, Senior enjoyed rocking babies and reading with tots at the daycare center. Quad also has onsite daycare at its Lomira, Wisconsin, plant.
Quad's beloved environmental spokesgoat, Gruff, debuted in 1991. A natural born recycler, Gruff’s trademark “Be a Gruff ... Recycle Stuff” logo and his bleating about all things green remind employees about the importance of the four R’s – redesign, reduce, reuse and recycle – both at work and at home. Quad has always believed that what is good for the environment is good for business. The company partners closely with environmental groups to serve as a catalyst for community action.
The “Quad Blues” uniform was instituted company-wide in 1993 and is worn by everyone from the newest new-hire to the Chairman, President & CEO. Quad Blues are a visual symbol of Quad's egalitarian nature, uniting employees across all divisions and reminding them that “we all put our pants on the same way.”
1996 - 1998
Quad established a Latin American presence with the purchase of a substantial interest in a commercial printer in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1996 and another in Sao Paolo, Brazil, in 1997. The following year, Quad expanded to Europe with the purchase of an equity stake in Winkowski, located in Poland. Quad became 100 percent owner of Winkowski in 2008 and rebranded the company as Quad/Graphics in 2012.
Quad purchased 325 acres of pristine forest and wetlands to establish Camp Quad, an educational and recreational nature center in Southeastern Wisconsin for the enjoyment of employees and their families. On Earth Day 2009 the company announced that it donated a conservation easement to Tall Pines Conservancy to ensure the land will remain undeveloped and continue to serve as an environmental showpiece for generations to come.
After a pursuit of more than two decades, Quad signed a contract to print National Geographic. The current and former governor of West Virginia, the local high school band and hundreds of cheering employees at Quad's Martinsburg, W. Va., plant attended the celebration. The highlight was a typical Harry V. Quadracci kind of surprise: National Geographic editor Bill Allen, dressed in safari gear, and Harry dressed in his Quad Blues, rode into the cheering crowd atop an elephant. With its storied history dating to 1888, awe-inspiring photography and "windows on the world" content, the publication is considered one of the top prizes in magazine printing.
The Quadracci Pavilion at the Milwaukee Art Museum, designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, opened in 2001 and immediately became Milwaukee's foremost icon. Harry and Betty Quadracci kicked off the museum's capital campaign with their generous $10 million donation.
When Company Founder Harry V. Quadracci unexpectedly passed away in July 2002, many thought the company would collapse without his leadership and mega-watt style. Harry was, after all, an industry legend. But Quad persevered – and prospered. Employees are Harry’s legacy, and carry forward his dream.
In a seamless transition, Harry's brother Tom, a company co-founder, assumed the role of President & CEO.
Quad opened its Oklahoma City gravure and web offset plant in 2003. It was the company’s first plant west of the Mississippi River and, at more than 1.1 million square feet in 2015, remains the largest print-production facility west of the Mississippi.
Quad was awarded the American Forest & Paper Association's 2005 Business Leadership Recycling Award in the large business category. The AF&PA cited Quad's numerous educational, innovative and cost-effective programs and partnerships to ensure recyclable paper waste from operations is captured and placed in the highest grades possible for recycling.
Quad believes that safety is as much a value and part of its culture as quality and productivity. In 2005, the company initiated SAFE (Safe Accountability For Employees), a safety and reward program that holds every employee accountable for creating a safe work environment. Quad also launched a comprehensive thinkSAFE educational program that includes regular safety huddles, training and quizzes.
As the company was celebrating its 35th anniversary in 2006, a long-time employee remembered the time capsule buried in the Pewaukee plant when the company was installing its second press 30 years earlier. It took some time to figure out where the time capsule was buried, but finally the rusty three-foot pipe was unearthed. (Here, co-founder Tom Quadracci, left, and CEO Joel Quadracci use their might to open the capsule.) Tucked inside the time capsule was a letter from Harry, dated June 27, 1975 and simply addressed "To the future." No one had ever set eyes on it until then.
Joel Quadracci, Harry’s younger son, took over as President in 2005 and as CEO in 2006, the 35th anniversary of the company’s founding. Joel grew up in the company, beginning as a Corporate Trainee in 1991. Grounded in the same vision and values set forth by his father, Joel continues to propel the company forward in an ever-changing industry.
Quad became the first in the printing and publishing industry to join the Environmental Protection Agency’s SmartWaySM Transport Partnership. Later that year, Quad earned the first of numerous SmartWay Environmental Excellence Awards for its efforts to reduce greenhouse gases and other air emissions from its Duplainville Transport division. In 2008 alone, Quad prevented the emission of 11,479 tons of carbon dioxide over the fleet with no modifications – the equivalent of taking 1,907 passenger cars off the road.
The Harry V. Quadracci Printing Education and Technology Center opened at Waukesha County (Wisconsin) Technical College in 2007. The center includes a pressroom with state-of-the-art offset, flexographic and digital presses; computer and design labs; digital photo studio; pre-press space and an imaging center.
IntelliTrim technology became the latest first in Quad’s comail solutions offering. Developed internally, this patented technology enables Quad to bind and inline comail multiple titles — even if they have different trim sizes and page counts — on a single saddle stitcher. By year’s end, the company achieved an industry milestone by comailing more than 2 billion pieces. Just three years later, Quad more than doubled its annual publication and catalog comail output to 4.9 billion pieces, fueling additional postage savings for clients. Today, the company comails more than 5 billion mailpieces annually.
The Digital Print Group was created to grow Quad's four-color variable print platform, which enables clients to use their data to cost-effectively create one-of-a-kind print pieces personalized to each recipient.
The Sussex, Wisconsin, plant became the country's first existing heavy industrial manufacturing facility to earn LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. Quad's Hartford, Wisconsin, plant achieved the same status the following year. Quad retrofit its facilities with energy-efficient lighting (pictured here) which also benefits the environment. Landscaping with native flowers, grasses and trees requires no irrigation and attracts abundant wildlife to the natural habitat.
Quad acquired Worldcolor, the second largest provider of print, digital and related services in the Americas. The acquisition was a transformative event that catapulted Quad to the rank of second largest printer in the hemisphere. In addition to a larger geographic footprint, Quad gained new products and services to help its clients grow their businesses. To finance the acquisition, the company went public, listing on the New York Stock Exchange on July 7, 2010 (shown here).
The company was founded with the purpose to do things differently … and better. Every employee is considered an innovator. In 2009, the Quad Idea Catapult was launched to incubate and implement innovative ideas that have the most potential to help clients, grow the company and even change the industry. Pictured here, Dave Walters, Press Maintenance Mechanic in the Lomira, Wisconsin, plant, introduced a new design to reduce the amount of downtime because of breaks on press stackers.
Quad acquired Wisconsin-based commercial and specialty printer HGI Company. The acquisition included the Tempt In-Store Productions division, which produces large-format in-store signage and point-of-purchase displays. The following year, Quad launched its Commercial & Specialty print division to offer clients an array of highly customized print products.
Quad Chairman, President & CEO Joel Quadracci unequivocally announced that contrary to media reports, print is not dead. How does he know? He keeps reading it in print! But the days of being only a printer are gone. Quad is leading the charge to make print even more powerful in today's multimedia landscape. The company's interactive print platform helps marketers and publishers more effectively connect print with new and emerging digital and mobile technologies. QR codes, image recognition, near-field communication and beacons are just some of the applications that bring print to life.
In support of its strategy to grow profitably in geographies and segments where we can be a market leader, Quad acquired Transcontinental’s Mexican assets, which included three plants in and around Mexico City. Here, Chairman, President & CEO Joel Quadracci is flanked by employees in the Xochimilco, Mexico, plant.
Quad formed the Media Solutions group to help clients drive their content and communicate their brands across all forms of media, connecting print, digital, mobile and other channels. The printed page becomes a launching pad for interactive experiences that extend content, encourage social sharing, facilitate online shopping and more. Media Solutions also offers analytic tools to help clients measure and adjust their marketing strategies to get the most bang for the buck.
Quad purchased a minority ownership in Manipal Technologies, India's largest provider of printing services and end-to-end business solutions. ManipalTech is a leading printer of security products, commercial and interactive print, and packaging.
The Quad-owned Milwaukee Magazine broke new ground with its October 2012 issue by featuring image recognition or augmented reality experiences on every page of the magazine, which readers could launch with smartphones or other mobile devices. Quad used the magazine to demonstrate how the company can help publishers bring print to life with interactive technologies that engage readers and provide added value for advertisers.
Quad acquired Vertis Communications, strengthening the company's retail ad inserts, direct marketing and in-store marketing solutions. The plant in Chalfont, Penn. (pictured here), features an automated mail system with robots that build pallets of finished mail destined for various U.S. Postal Service entry points around the country.
Quad Chairman, President & CEO Joel Quadracci testified a second time on Capitol Hill, urging Congress to put the U.S. Postal Service on a path to financial stability. Speaking before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, Joel communicated the importance of the Postal Service to private industry and the U.S. economy. Senator Tammy Baldwin, U.S. Senator from Wisconsin and a leading proponent of postal reform, visited the Sussex, Wisconsin, plant in 2014 to learn about the company’s comail operations.
Citing Joel as "an evangelist" for bringing print and mobile media together, PRINTING IMPRESSIONS featured Quad's Interactive Print Solutions in its February 2013 cover story. In the cover photo, Joel holds a printed copy of the magazine and a mobile tablet. The photo itself is interactive print-enabled, so a reader using Quad's Actable® mobile app can watch Joel walk out of the cover of the magazine and explain Quad's commitment to leading the industry in integrating print with mobile channels.
Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe (left) presents the U.S. Postal Service Partnership for Growth award to Joe Schick, Quad's Director of Postal Affairs. Quad was recognized for its leadership role in driving technology innovation and supporting growth for the mailing industry.
Quad began the year with the acquisition of Unigraphic, an East Coast commercial and specialty printer, and then acquired Brown Printing, a leading magazine and catalog printer headquartered in Minnesota.
The Accelerated Career Training program (ACT) was launched in pressrooms across the company to help employees more rapidly learn new skills and climb the career ladder. A similar program was launched for the Finishing Department the following year. The program includes hands-on and classroom learning in addition to close mentoring. After completing the program, Samantha Williams, pictured here with her mentor Brian Grycowski, First Press Operator, was promoted to Second Press Operator in the Lomira, Wisconsin, plant and now is enrolled in advanced ACT training.
Quad's massive logistics network can compress production schedules and meet precise in-home delivery dates while delivering a lower cost per mailpiece. In 2014, the company comailed 5.255 billion magazines, catalogs and direct marketing pieces, earning an estimated $250 million in savings on behalf of its clients. In 2015, Quad continued to lead the industry in comail volume and capacity, with more offline comail equipment than the rest of the industry combined.
The New York Times ran a story on Hearst Magazine’s use of custom covers and Quad being the innovator behind those covers. In 2014 alone, Quad helped Hearst produce unique covers for magazines like Cosmopolitan, O: The Oprah Magazine, Good Housekeeping, Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire and The Food Network Magazine. One cover unfolds so many times, it has been nicknamed "the origami cover." Here, Quad CEO Joel Quadracci leads a celebration for Hearst for the startup of Quad’s newest, most advanced cover press ever in October 2015.
Quad established the QuadPackaging division with acquisitions of Copac Global Packaging and Specialty Finishing in 2015. These strategic acquisitions build on earlier acquisitions of Schreiber Specialties, a commercial and specialty printer with the unique capability to produce six-pack beverage carriers; Dallas-based Williamson Printing with its specialty print coating capabilities; and Proteus Packaging (shown here) and its sister company, Transpak.
Three Quad business areas combined to form BlueSoho, an integrated marketing and technology firm. BlueSoho helps marketers deliver fully integrated, relevant content across all media channels, transforming brands into immersive customer experiences.
The Youth Apprenticeship Program gives motivated high school students the opportunity to learn the printing process from the ground up. The program provides paid training through hands-on work, job shadowing and classroom instruction. Jeff Thoenes, pictured here with is mentor Ryan Ehrlich, worked at the Hartford, Wisconsin, plant during the 2014 – 2015 school year.
Quad's Versailles, Kentucky, book plant printed a long lost Dr. Seuss book, What Pet Should I Get? The plant has been printing Dr. Seuss books for more than 30 years.
The Dr. Seuss book printed on Versailles' web offset presses, but the plant is equipped with state-of-the-art high-speed digital color presses. From hardcover art books to textbooks to trade and mass-market paperbacks, Quad's Book division can do it all. Watch a video of company Chairman, President & CEO Joel Quadracci describing the transformation in digital book printing.
Quad was named to Forbes first-ever "America's Best Employers 2015" list. (Note: Do not confuse this list with Fortune’s “100 Best Companies for Work For” list.)