For more than 30 years, Paul Derboghosian has been churning out screen prints as the owner of Graphic Connections, a Watertown, Mass., business with two production spaces and retail shops and 22 employees. Until recently, the business relied only on manual presses, producing most prints on a 6/6 press. Knowing how much work it takes to operate a manual press, Derboghosian decided it was time to bring in an automatic press to relieve some of the stress on his employees and help his business continue to grow.
“I’ve got people here who have been working for me for 20/25 plus years. I feel like I owe these people some things,” Derboghosian said. “I felt that as they’re getting older, they’re not going to want to stroke ink anymore. Nobody does. It’s labor intensive.
“I recognize that for the business to grow — We had these larger size accounts, and it really helps you to get the work out quicker.”
Derboghosian began his research, which he always does before making a big purchase. He looked at what he considers the top three brands in screen printing — M&R™, Workhorse™ and Anatol. He felt comfortable buying from any of the brands; his only restriction was the available space in his shop.
“I knew I wanted to buy some new equipment, but I didn’t know what yet. I knew it was going to be an automatic,” he explained. “I had some size restrictions, so I could only go with some certain size machines. The automatic and the dryer had to go into one area.”
In the midst of his researching, Derboghosian headed to an area trade show. He found representatives from M&R™ and from Workhorse™. A local distributor had information on Anatol’s presses. Derboghosian talked to all three and got quotes. When the Anatol distributor couldn’t find a solution that would fit in his limited space, Derboghosian decided to choose Workhorse™ equipment.
The equipment had already started to be delivered to his shop, when Derboghosian got a phone call from Anatol that completely changed his plans.
A sales manager called to follow up on the trade show. Derboghosian said he had purchased Workhorse™ equipment. He said the Anatol sales manager didn’t try to talk him out of his new equipment, or say anything bad about Workhorse™, but he shared information about the Anatol Titan and Volt automatic presses and about the Vulcan gas dryer.
When Derboghosian mentioned his space restrictions, the sales manager worked with Anatol engineers to shorten the overall length of the Vulcan to fit the space and to find a way to deliver the equipment in pieces so it would fit through the shop’s 3-foot-wide doorways.
“They made all these modifications, and I liked this guy more and more. He was bending over backwards,” he said. “At the end of the day, I dropped my Workhorse™, and I bought this.”
Derboghosian had already paid for the Workhorse™ in full, but he was so impressed with Anatol’s equipment and customer service that he was willing to go through the process of returning the equipment he received and obtaining a refund.
Initially, Derboghosian committed to an Anatol Titan and a Vulcan. A follow-up call from the sales manager inquiring about his reservations on the Volt — which seemed to fit his shop’s needs — changed his mind.
“He gave me the right advice: He said, ‘This machine has been on the market for a while now; we’ve worked the kinks out. It’s smoother, better operation,’” Derboghosian said.
Derboghosian changed his order, and a few months ago, they began operating their new Volt and Vulcan. Derboghosian said the sales team didn’t lead him astray in choosing equipment for his shop. On top of that, the level of service he received, from the sales team, engineers and service team, was outstanding.
“It’s all modified for what you need. Anatol was willing to modify it to meet my needs. That’s why I’m with Anatol. And (that level of service) continued after the sale,” Derboghosian said. “I bought them. It just so happened that with them came some good equipment. That’s what really sold me. They put their mouths and money where my requests were. They never said ‘no’ or ‘we can’t’ or we ‘won’t.’ They addressed everything I requested.”
Derboghosian has been so impressed with his experience with Anatol, and the operation of the equipment, that he’s offered to speak with any other screen printers who might be considering Anatol equipment and to give demonstrations to other area screen printers who want to see Anatol equipment in action. The Anatol experience sold Derboghosian on doing business with Anatol, and he’s quick to encourage other screen printers to do the same.
“I don’t know what more anyone would want to know. I don’t know why you wouldn’t want to buy from these people. They really care,” Derboghosian said.