After 41-Years, Contact Printing Converts to Minuteman Press, North Vancouver
After 41 years, Contact Printing and Mailing Ltd. has been converted to Minuteman Press, North Vancouver. The new owner, Doug Frederickson, takes the reigns from long-time owners Bob Gibson and Dave Brown. This is Doug’s third Minuteman Press location having been a franchise owner for 28 years. His other locations are in Surrey and Campbell Heights, B.C.
Doug Frederickson points out, “Bob and Dave have been in business for over 41 years with good reason. During that time, they have built a tremendous, loyal following of customers by treating them right and providing outstanding quality and service. I’ve been working with them closely on the acquisition and now the transition, and I am excited to build on their legacy.”
Doug adds, “I am also excited to introduce new products such as apparel, promotional items, and signage, to go along with all of the printing and mailing services.”
History of the Business
Founded by the father and son team of Bob and Jim Gibson, Contact Printing was started in 1981. Bob had been employed in a print shop that kept missing deadlines and Jim, his father, needed direct mail printing done on a regular basis. They decided that they would do it on their own and opened their own business.
Like many print shops at that time, Contact Printing focused on instant printing. They also specialized in direct mail and built up a colour-printing business as well. “We were able to stand out simply by getting the job done right, and fast,” says Bob.
When Jim retired in 1988, Bob recruited his high school friend Dave Brown. Dave says, “Bob and I were friends, and he convinced me to take the leap and join him.” Despite a different background and training, he learned the ropes and 35 years later, they were still friends and business partners.
Evolution of Printing
As the printing industry evolved, so did Contact Printing. Bob shares, “Over the years, we were always quick to embrace new technology. We always stayed up to date and today we do what we’ve always done, which is provide high quality products and fast turnarounds for our clients.”
After 41 years as a successful printing business, Contact Printing is in a great position as it transitions to Minuteman Press, North Vancouver. Dave shares, “We are known as a one-stop shop, with printing, mailing, and shipping all being done right and on time.”
Minuteman Press Helps Facilitate the Transition
When it was time for Bob and Dave to think about retirement, they received a letter from Neil MacLeod, Minuteman Press International Regional Vice President for Western Canada. This was the second time they had heard from Neil, as two and a half years before, they had met with him. At that time, Neil said that Minuteman Press may be able to help them to sell the business, but Bob and Dave we weren’t ready to sell just yet. By the end of 2021, they were ready, so contacted Neil again and 9 months later, the sale was completed.
Minuteman Press International attracts a wide pool of buyers due to their training and ongoing local support. Neil MacLeod says, “Once Dave and Bob decided to work with us, I immediately went to work to help them find qualified buyers and facilitate the sale of Contact Printing.”
He adds, “As it turns out, Doug Frederickson, who is already an experienced multi-unit Minuteman Press owner, expressed interest to me in expanding with another location in North Vancouver. I arranged for Doug to meet with Bob and Dave, and everything came together. Not only did Doug buy the business, but he also purchased the building, further securing Bob and Dave’s exit strategy.”
The new owner, Doug, says that after meeting the Contact Printing owners Bob and Dave, everything just fit together. It was clear that they had run their businesses over 41 years in a similar way to how Doug had run his for 28 years. They all look forward to a smooth transition to Minuteman Press, North Vancouver.
Reflections & Advice for Others
Dave reflects, “Generally, this was a pretty seamless process. We are really happy with the way things went, and Minuteman Press made it easier to sell our business. We know it will be in great hands with Doug Frederickson.”
“The whole Minuteman Press process was much easier that I realized it was going to be.” Bob says, “There was a free evaluation and no commissions. While there was work to be done to get to the point of the sale, I felt we were working towards the same goal of selling the business to the right buyer and the right price. We are really pulling for Doug, and we will make the transition as seamless as possible.”