While Rapidity managing director Paul Manning ‘Mustn’t Grumble’ he knows there ‘Ain’t No Pleasing You’ when it comes to Brexit regardless of your views, but he would happily organise a ‘Knees Up’ if it helped the industry to ‘Rabbit’ and collaborate more.

Rapidity managing director Paul Manning

What’s at the top of your Christmas wish list this year?
That Channel 5 continue to repeat the Chas n Dave 1982 Christmas special as they do every year especially this year in memorial of the late great Chas Hodges. I absolutely love that Christmas special and if it wasn’t on the telly this year I wouldn’t know what the point of Christmas actually is…

What trend (business or technology) do you think 2018 will be remembered for?
In a general sense, I think the online/ecommerce world is maturing and is making a massive impact on most industries including print. Traditional businesses in most sectors have had to consider how to adapt and survive and print is no different.

What do you think will represent the single biggest opportunity for printers in 2019 and why?
Added value. The trade can’t just keep competing on the faster presses and who can buy paper the cheapest. I genuinely feel that added value is the only way to open up printers’ margins and establish better relationships with their customers. It’s the biggest most easily accessible opportunity out there.

What do you think will represent the single biggest threat for printers in 2019 and why?
Uncertainty. Whatever your beliefs are in our place inside/outside the EU, it’s the uncertainty around this whole event which is the biggest threat to printers and any industry for that matter. The current climate of uncertainty especially regarding imports/exports of raw materials and goods is a big threat to our trade.

What’s the one thing that the industry should do more of, or do better, in 2019?
The industry needs to see competitors as potential collaborators and not solely as predators. The print trade is so diverse that if we continue to work together and provide a service to our customers rather than a commodity there is a better future. Some companies have been doing this already and I think it needs to be more widely adopted especially by vendors and MIS providers.

What was your biggest disappointment in 2018?
Charlton Athletic are still owned by an eccentric billionaire hell bent on ruining our famous club. We thought he would have sold up by now!

What was your highlight of 2018?
That Rapidity traded strongly, and all our staff were able to earn an income for their families.

What are your hopes for 2019?
That Brexit is sorted in a sensible progressive way and the country moves forward and leaves the divisions behind…

What is your one-word view on Brexit?
Shambles.

What was the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
’If you build it, they will come’ is not a business plan.

What if anything will you do differently in 2019?
As a business, no two years are ever the same, every year is different to the last as we continue to flex, change and press on.

What’s your favourite Christmas cracker joke?
Why is it getting so hard buying advent calendars? Their days are numbered.

What was the best Christmas present you ever received?
SNES with Super Mario Brothers.

Are you making any New Year’s resolutions? If so, what?
To cut down on diet coke and coffee! But also, to add some more value-added services to our business and further establish ourselves as London’s leading printer.



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