Cambridge-based sporting equipment supplier Mr. Cricket has brought lucrative personalisation services in-house following investment in a Roland TrueVIS SG-300 printer/cutter in a move to reduce outsourcing costs.
The company has seen a huge increase in the demand for personalised uniform, sportswear, match apparel and cricket kit from more than 100 sports clubs and six local schools. However, as the business grew, the cost of outsourcing personalised printing services began to soar, and as such it quickly became apparent that by bringing the printing in-house the company would save as much as £20,000 per annum in outsourcing costs.
Since installation the printer has streamlined the company's business processes, boosted profit margins, and delivered greater control over the quality and delivery of personalised apparel and equipment, while enabling the addition of new print services including banners, sponsor boards, branded items and much more to Mr. Cricket's portfolio.
A self-confessed ‘total novice’ when it comes to printers, company founder Merrick Fuller approached Grafityp, an approved Roland DG UK dealer, who recommended the TrueVIS SG-300 printer/cutter that offers a massive range of production capabilities at an attractive price point.
“We mainly use our Roland machine for printing names, numbers, club badges and logos to personalise sports and school wear and we’ve seen a big uptake on that part of the business,” he says. “However, we’ve also recently created a cricket scoreboard-style wedding table plan, and printed sponsor-branded wrap-arounds for cricket stumps!
“With our Roland printer, we’ve more opportunity for growth as we are able to offer more services; everything is now under our control and we can confidently meet customers’ needs quickly, while guaranteeing the quality of the end-product.”
In terms of challenges faced learning to use the printer/cutter, there have been very few. Those Mr. Cricket has encountered, Fuller puts down to his self-confessed novice with printers’ status: “For us, the challenge has been learning how to use the design software rather than the print software and technical support from the Roland DG team has been very important to us. When we’ve made silly errors, they’ve supported us brilliantly. They’re very accommodating and helpful and you never feel like you’re calling them with daft questions.
“I also went on Roland’s Intermediate Digital Print Course, which was incredibly useful for us as it’s our first experience using this type of printer. We’ll definitely look at attending further courses at the Roland DG Academy as our confidence grows.”
Following on from the success of the Mr. Cricket business, Fuller has since launched the Mr. Hockey website, with a Mr. Custom Clothing site in the offing for custom team-wear and apparel.