1991 was the year that hundreds of mysterious crop circles appeared in farmers’ fields across the UK, the government introduced TESSA’s and Mr Blobby started (and ended) his pop career. That same year, two friends from Preston decided to start their own printing business in the city. Back then, they could not have predicted how radically their industry would change over the next quarter century – or that RfM Accountants would be joining them on their business journey.
In the early days, Sprintprint opened as a small print shop on Cannon Street in Preston. Business partners Stuart Smith and Andy Smith had a small lithographic (litho) press on which they could print in one or two colours. To print in full colour (4-colour) they would have needed large premises just to house the huge presses that were up for the job.
The cost of large machinery and sizeable premises made full colour printing comparatively expensive, so small businesses relied on places like Sprintprint for their stationery and marketing materials.
The digital print revolution arrived in Preston
By the late 1990s, Sprintprint had moved to larger premises outside the city centre and the partners were becoming increasingly aware of the rise of digital printing.
Historically, full colour printing was only cost-effective for long runs of print (1000s of copies). Digital printing, which removed the requirement for plates and films, and expensive proofs, made the print process quicker and less expensive. Small businesses with less generous budgets were no longer limited to communicating in one or two colours.
Seeing the potential of the new technology, Andy and Stuart invested in new equipment and Sprintprint began to offer digital print services.
Bigger, better, brighter
Despite the rise of digital, litho printing would still prove to be more cost-effective for long print runs. Customers wanted colour – a bigger press was needed! As the range of services offered by Sprintprint grew, so too did the size of their presses. In 2002 the business re-located again to larger premises, the former fire station in Bamber Bridge.
The business was no longer just a small print shop in Preston. Running a larger operation came with a greater potential financial liability and the partners made the decision to become a Limited Company.
“The advisor we’d had since we started up was not a Chartered Accountant. The business was expanding and we felt we needed an accountant who would be able to give us more specialist advice,” explains Stuart.
“At around the same time as our move to the Old Fire Station, RfM Preston got in touch to see if we were looking for an accountant. It was pure coincidence but great timing! They sounded like the kind of firm we needed so we met with them to find out more.
“It was clear to us that they were very professional and knowledgeable. But we actually chose RfM because we liked the personalities of the people we met. Paul (Newsham) and Gillian (Isibor) became our advisors back then and are still our advisors 15 years on.”
We can rely on them
Over 25 years after the business was founded, Sprintprint continues to grow and evolve. Andy and Stuart ensure they keep pace with technological changes in the industry and respond to the print needs of customers. They don’t, however, have any plans to change accountants.
“The thing we value most is the advice we get from RfM. We meet with them every quarter to discuss where the business is going. They support us with advice on making tax savings, operating efficiently, even planing for when we retire from the business.
“We know we can rely on them; we can ring them anytime – and we always get an answer right away.”
Exclusive RfM client offer
Sprintprint is offering all RfM clients a 5% discount on their printing*. This saving is available on all litho and digital printed items, from business cards to large format banners. Visit the Sprintprint website to see the full product range.
To take advantage of the offer, contact Sprintprint on 01772 629229 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and mention RfM.
*Terms and conditions apply – please ask Sprintprint for details.