Ex-Hit Employee Slams Company;
Hit Plans Lawsuit
Marcus Taylor, a recently terminated employee of Hit Promotional Products (asi/61125) sent a 3,301-word e-mail last Friday to executives and franchisees of Adventures in Advertising (asi/109480). In it, he accused his former boss, an assistant customer service manager, and other employees of sending sexually explicit e-mails to one another. Hit President Bill Schmidt says that “these allegations are not true” and says that his company is planning to file a lawsuit against the employee.
Taylor, the former customer service representative at Hit for the Adventures in Advertising account, left the company on February 20; while Taylor says he was fired, Schmidt says he resigned. “I feel people had a right to know what was going on,” Taylor told Counselor.
In an interview with Counselor today, Schmidt said that his company plans to file a lawsuit this week accusing Taylor of breaking into the company computer system and altering e-mail files.
Ace Marketing Agrees to Acquire Bright Ideas Ace Marketing & Promotions Inc. (asi/103085) has entered into a Letter of Intent to acquire the customer base and other intangibles of Bright Ideas Marketing & Promotions Inc. (asi/146085). The purchase price is anticipated to be $380,000, to be paid half in cash and half in Ace Marketing stock. Ace intends to enter into three-year employment contracts with two key employees and owners of Bright Ideas. Bright Ideas had sales last year of $1 million and seven employees.
According to Maureen L. Magee, president of Bright Ideas, Ace Marketing will take on much of Bright Ideas administrative responsibilities enabling them to focus on expanding the customer base and sales. “As small business owners, we wanted to take it to the next level and to develop a long term plan,” she says. “We’re confident that Ace has the infrastructure to help us reach our goal.”
The deal is expected to be finalized in the next two months. The stock price for Ace, which is publicly traded under the ticker symbol AMKT, experienced large fluctuations on the day the deal was announced. It first decreased by 18%, but then had come within 5% of its opening price that day. At presstime, the stock was trading at $1.81 per share, just 2% below the price prior to the deal being announced.
R.S. Owens Takes Center Stage At The Oscars R. S. Owens & Co. Inc. (asi/75530) has been manufacturing the Oscar statuettes since 1983 but the company’s presence at last weekend’s Academy Awards extended beyond that of the golden statues. Employee Anacleto Medina was in attendance and he also played a key role in the pre-Oscar festivities. Medina led Saturday’s “Parade of Oscars” into the Kodak auditorium.
Following him were 50 students of the Inner-City Filmmakers, an industry job development program which provides training to socially and economically underprivileged youth. Each parade member carried a
statuette and Medina’s was later awarded to composer Ennio Morricone who scored films such as The Untouchables and The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.
Each year, the Academy gives R. S. Owens two complimentary tickets and owner Owen Siegel chose Medina based on his performance and tenure. Medina, who supervises hand casting, has worked for the company for over four decades and pours each of the Oscar statuettes himself every year. R. S. Owens also makes the Emmy, the MTV Video Music Award, the Clio and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Award.
Every wonder what your fellow distributors are up to? Do they have the same challenges as you do? The same crazy customers? The same issues with cash flow, managing talent and maintaining margins? Counselor editors hit the road the past few days to find out. We visited five wildly diverse distributors to see how they ran their businesses for a special "Day in the Life of a Distributor" report for the April issue of Counselor.
For a sneak peak at this riveting cover story, click here to listen to a podcast with editor-in-chief Melinda Ligos and Dennis Borst, president of Patriot Marketing Group (asi/291551). Borst, who has a double life as "Big Papa" (host of a radio show on Hollywood's Sunset Strip), is one of the profilees. In this interview, he discusses how his unique hiring strategy has helped him make contacts--and sales--in the lucrative entertainment industry.
The Service Blues Much like the airline industry, users of ad specialty products have a choice of providers. Unlike the ad specialties industry however, there are very few airlines to choose from. Still in JetBlue’s seven year history it had built up a reputation as one the airlines that gets the customer. Leather seats, personal TVs and few major snafus had the company riding high. And then in February it left a plane full of people stranded on a New York runway for more than 10 hours, unleashing a firestorm of outraged customers.
Any business can learn a thing or two about crisis management from JetBlue CEO David
Neeleman. First off don’t be afraid to say you’re sorry. Immediately the company issued a statement saying: “We are sorry and embarrassed. But most of all, we are deeply sorry. Last week was the worst operational week in JetBlue’s seven year history.” The company distributed a video of the apology on Youtube.com and drafted a “Customer Bill of Rights” that among other things gave them to right to deplane after five hours.
In the promotional products world, such upfront actions are always necessary. “You are only as good as your last order,” says Lou Baldo, president of Special T Unlimited (asi/331333). “If you deliver ten right, your word is golden. If the eleventh shipment arrives with holes in them you tell them. It’s how you handle the situation.”
Inc. Acquires White Paper
Printcom Inc. (asi/299473) has acquired the Auburn, WA, operation of
the Vancouver-based White Paper Co. Details of the deal were not disclosed. Printcom
has 14 employees including one of White Paper-Auburn’s former account managers.
White Paper Co., which has eight branches in Canada, expanded into the American
northwest before deciding to divest from the region.
“They decided that this operation could be run better – their niche is in Canada where they know their suppliers,” says Judy Coovert, Printcom’s corporate secretary and treasurer. “They looked to fellow Document Management Industry Association members in the general geographic region.” Representatives of the two companies met at the DMIA conference in October and the deal closed on February 1, 2007. Coovert says that Printcom, which has a promotional products division, sees this as an opportunity to penetrate White Paper’s client base and offer them new services.
Non-Profit Golf Tournament HSA Enterprises Inc. (asi/217302) supported The Samantha Foundation’s Second Annual Golf Tournament held last month. The golf tournament and dinner had 250 guests and raised over $78,000 for the non-profit organization’s home safety related programs. The foundation was created by Mark and Katherine Kessler, HSA’s vice presidents of finance and sales respectively, following the death of their two-year-old daughter, Samantha, in a home accident.
The tournament was sponsored by Florida Power & Light and the 110 golfers each received goodie bags with Nike products as well as imprinted items donated by Hurricane Line (asi/66010), Sanford Busines-To-Business (asi/84833), Sanders Manufacturing Company (asi/84820), Norwood, Spector Image (asi/88660), Bic Graphics USA (asi/40480), Leed’s (asi/66887), Hospitality Mints LLC (asi/61820) and Infinity Recognition (asi/62573). In the coming year, The Samantha Foundation will be developing and distributing home safety kits throughout the south Florida area.
Online Registration Now Open For The ASI Show Chicago Online registration for the industry’s largest Midwest show and biggest show of the summer, The ASI Show Chicago is now open. Click here to register for The ASI Show Chicago, July 10-12. Now is also the best time to book your hotel room. As a reminder, ASI distributor members can get a free hotel room. For complete information on this offer, visit www.asishow.com/2007freehotel.
This year’s ASI Show Chicago show schedule is a power-packed three-day event, including The ASI Show Education Conference (July 10) and two full exhibit days (July 11-12). Plan to see 800 leading suppliers featuring thousands of new products, learn cutting-edge sales techniques by industry experts, develop new relationships at numerous interactive networking events (ASI distributor members can receive up to two free Gala tickets until April 20) and enjoy three free Keynote presentations.
For more information on The ASI
Show or to register, visit www.asishow.com or
call 877-ASI-SHOW today.
It has been brought to our attention that a former employee of Schroeder & Company (asi/320895) named Heather Morgan has been using the distributor’s ASI number. If you receive requests for samples, pricing quotes or orders using Schroeder’s number please make certain the person using this number provides the following information:
Schroeder & Company asi/320895 7225 Fox Harbor Road Prospect, KY 40059-9327
Phone: (502) 228-0603 Fax: (502) 228-8552
Contact: Deborah Schroeder, Proprietor
Aprons Etc. (asi/36558) announced a new product offering, the “Nightingale Feather-Soft” line of medical scrubs.
Charles River Apparel (asi/44620) recognized Sales Representative Scott Petrowski as Sales Rep of the Year at the company’s bi-annual sales meeting.
Crystal D (asi/47759) announced that it was recently certified by e-PSA Labs. The certification provides the company with automated electronic exchange in order information and business processes.
Journalbooks/Timeplanner Calendars Inc. (asi/91340) recognized production team members Gary Stamey and Linda Watterson and Order Coordinators Kristi Bronson and Jessica Clyburn for their work in 2006.
Leed’s (asi/66887) awarded distributor Tammy Wilsmeyer of Elite Promotions Inc. of Missouri (asi/186702) a luxury vacation package worth $20,000 as part of its “Make It Yours Dream Vacation” sweepstakes at this year’s PPAI Expo.
The Leslie Company Inc. (asi/67120) installed a Komori L-640 RP printing press to celebrate the company’s 30th anniversary.
Numo Manufacturing Inc. (asi/74710) was recognized by Libbey Inc. for being the number one volume purchaser of the “CD shot” glass from Libbey in 2006.
Towel Specialties (asi/91605) presented Cascade Marketing Group with its Sales Rep of the Year award.
On The Move
Display-Tec (asi/49920) and
LarLu (asi/66390) have promoted
Jake Peterson to sales development
First Impressions Inc. of Houston
(asi/194460) announced the
addition of Robert Perez as a domestic
and international account executive.
The company also welcomed Jessica Sornson
as sales assistant.
Game Parts Inc. (asi/55750)
has named Laura Pagano president and
Newton Manufacturing Co. (asi/283300)
named Carla Kolpin and Brenda Chenchar
to publication directors. Nathan Bennett
joined the company as sales director.
announced the addition of two new independent sales representative agencies. Karin Otterstrom and Mark Heidmann will represent the company in AL, FL, GA, MS, NC, SC, TN, VA and PR. James Clark, Sharon Young and Robin Cooper White of Clark & Clark will represent the company in KS, MO, IA and NE.
U M Imports (asi/92398) has added Steve Saltzman as National Sales Manager and Cassio Trevisani as Director of Marketing.
Vision USA (asi/80060) has rehired Melissa Agnello as regional sales manager for the central region.
OF THE WEEK
life into any medical or
health-related product, service
or message with the Syringe
Stressball from Jetline(ASI
Pharmaceutical Firms & Reps,
Awareness Campaigns & Hospitals
will love to promote with
this unique stressball!
Sweet Alternative Display Inflatable Mannequin Available Now!asi/63340 - Emphasis on realistic, compact, durable, and can put cover on -- just like hard mannequin.View Special...
Create Some Excitement with Poms from Pepco. asi/77280 - PEPCO PROMOTIONAL PRODUCTS asi/77280 Create some excitement with your next promotion! Poms are a low cost and fun promotional item. From the leader in Sports Promotions. View Special...
Tote Bags As Low As 35 cents!asi/92398 - Absolutely lowest Prices for Promotional & Specialty Products. View Special...
PLWC's Beverly Hills Bottle - the Perfect Promotion!asi/79349 - Whether you are celebrating, having a fundraiser or just gathering for a corporate event, our CUSTOM LABLED BOTTLED WATER is the PERFECT accompaniment. View Special...
Emblems, Badges & Patches - No Artwork Charges! asi/98264 - Custom Emblems, Badges & Patches for heat sealing or sewing to apparel. No artwork or set-up charges & quick turn-around times! Embroidered or Perfect Print emblems, Embroidered American Flags and Magnetic Badges available.View Special...
PAR ONE & NIKE Special Promotions-Buy 1, Get 1!asi/75912 - Par One, Inc. and Nike Golf have some great "Buy 1, Get 1" Specials for you this Spring! Also, SUPER Closeout pricing on some of your favorite Nike golf balls! Better hurry! Offers available only while supplies last.View Special...
Unique Cell Phone Holder Stress Relieversasi/79525 - We are committed to the highest level of customer service, quality products, and punctual shipments. We expect our level of service to exceed your expectations. View Special...
Picnic Time Offers FREE Screen Charge on NEW ITEMS!asi/78065 - PICNIC TIME :: 25 Years of Innovation. www.picnicpromotions.com FREE Setup on Select NEW Items!View Special...
Baseball uniforms! Quality Product! Best Prices!asi/83096 - Great savings on Baseball uniforms!View Special...
4-Color Process Printing now available! asi/75740 - The Premier Line ASI 75740- 4-Color Process Printing Exclusively from the Premier Line. The Premier Line's new advance technology allows you to print your name and logo in 4-color process print on a wide selection of bags.View Special...
Great Prices on School and Office Accessoriesasi/30249 - Home, School and Office Supplies since 1934!View Special...
March Madness - $5.49 128MB USB Drives - 5 Day Lead Time asi/63053 - $5.49(net) 128MB - $7.49(net) 256MB - $9.49(net) 1GB. 6 styles to choose from. FREE Virtual Proofs, FREE PMS Color Match, FREE Small Gift Box, 1 Year Warranty, 5 Day Lead Time. Call CorporateKey at 1-866-438-5655 or visit www.CorporateKey.com. View Special...
Best bag specials w/FREE 3 Day Rush!asi/68253 - The prices is lower than EQP with FREE 3 Day Rush! It’s what we specialize in so we can offer you great prices! WE HAVE IT IN STOCK waiting for your order! Don’t wait! Call now!View Special...
EQP on New Trunk Organizersasi/43512 - Great new line up of trunk organizers and trunk organizer coolers from California Innovations. Featuring side mesh pockets, carry handles and folding flat, these new trunk organizers from California Innovations make the perfect car accessory.View Special...
Custom chocolate casino chips & coins as low as 23 cents(r) asi/41570 - Custom branded chocolate coins and casino chips are a sure bet! asi/41570View Special...
Great Specials brought to you by Post-it(R) Brandasi/91240 - Post-it(R) Brand Specials are a must see!View Special...
Fleece Blankets and Soft Bead Pillows as low as $1.95asi/92398 - Lowest Price in the Industry - Fleece Blankets and Soft Bead pillows as low as $1.95!View Special...
Business Card Self Promotion Specialasi/42989 - Turn any business card into a gift card by adding music downloads or cell phone entertainment to the back. Added value = card retained. Perfect for realtors, bankers, sales personnel & insurance brokers. Limited time offer - self promotion special.View Special...
Lanyards As Low As 13 cents - Lead time 7 days & upasi/92398 - Absolutely lowest Prices for Promotional & Specialty Products. View Special...
#1 in all Counselor Supplier Rating Categoriesasi/88148 - Solar Advertising is your “Natural Choice” for high quality NATURAL and ORGANIC lip balm and sunscreen products. You asked for it … we heard you … try our NEW ORGANIC lip balm formulas! View Special...
New! Unique Golf Gift (q) Free Shipping until April 30thasi/48721 - New! Unique Golf Gift(q) Free Shipping until April 30th. Days of Glory Golf Journal is the Best New Golf Product in 2007! This is what we continue to hear from our partners around the country. Quality, price, &originality make this the perfect giftView Special...
Get Lucky!asi/37122 - May the Luck of the Irish Be Yours Today! Artistic Toy Mfg celebrates St. Patrick's Day with a special on Irish themed gifts. Hurry - special expires 3/15/07!View Special...
EVANS 1st Quarter Drinkware Promotion - An Adventure in Color!asi/52840 - Soar into a whole new color stratosphere! Evans #4000 Twister Mugs are ideal for any outdoor trip or day excursion. Receive EQP on the #4000 Twister Mug – available in 15 different colors! View Special...
Best Prices on High-Quality Digital Photo Frames! asi/63053 - $89.99 / 7" LCD - $119.99 / 8" LCD - $149.99 / 10" LCD. Multimedia displays play MP3s, videos and photos directly from your digital camera's SD or xD card. High-Quality LCD screens. Call CorporateKey at 1-866-438-5655 or visit www.CorporateKey.com. View Special...
PolyPro now offers a 4 color-process Organizer/Recipe Box - ASI 78952asi/78952 - The NEW 4CP Organizer Boxes look great in any kitchen or office.View Special...
If you'd like us to send Counselor PromoGram FREE to anyone else at your company (or to your off-site sales reps), just send us a list of email addresses to CounselorPromoGram@asicentral.com and we'll take care of the rest.
4800 Street Road, Trevose, PA 19053