‘Get On The Bus’ for Total Value Proposition

October 18, 2016


Creating a differentiated value in graphic communications is not easy. Anyone can find a partner with the latest technology, solving the latest problems and, of course, all promising savings and revenue for customers.

Please understand… it’s not that I am “hating” on the graphic communications industry; I am bloody passionate about it. In fact, creating value is exciting in a tide of change and one like the graphic communications space, which is in rapid disruption due to the digitization of content; you can easily get caught up into new ideas and business models. I remember a professor whom at time explained how she saw disruption as opportunity, first introducing “design thinking” as an approach. Today this has driven transformational thinking in my career.

We often pull on our experiences to apply to new and old ideas, positioning statements and innovations/technology. A few months ago, I was working on the office and vertical strategies, and my experience of pulling what is important to one industry was definitely drawing my attention to build differentiated value in another. As I was exploring further in the digital manufacturing side, it suddenly occurred that a similar approach for business process management built from a Services Oriented Architecture is one of the founding technologies to an Enterprise Service Bus. And then it hit me: What if we built a Production Service Bus? What would it solve? How would it be differentiated? Can it describe our strategic solutions approach in the market? Can it be easily talked about?

Let’s face it: Advances in global technology continues to disrupt how we do things. But becoming a market leader in this changing landscape depends on more than just innovation. Companies now must constantly integrate emerging technologies. And for that, we need a cohesive strategy that includes people, business models — and technology.

After huddling with Erik Holdo and a few other key individuals, we started to craft an entirely new approach to the graphic communications industry. One that not only incorporated all of our technology from toner to inkjet, but also to new investments made through our partnership with MGI as well as the expansion into industrial print space. This approach allowed us to clean up the eclectic group of solutions in production today and deliver a simple approach to an open platform called the Konica Minolta Production Bus.

This is delivered through three pillars and they are designed to resonate with the print service provider.

  • Workflow Management – We set out to bring together key technologies that drive automation up and downstream to the value chain.
  • Customer Communications Management (CCM) – This is a series of key solutions also combining Konica Minolta IP with integrated solutions that focus on capturing the digitization of content.
  • Business and Value-Added – Whereby we have brought together a set of differentiated solutions to augment specialty print with the MGI portfolio and 3D printing solutions/services.


This platform-first approach is an emerging innovation in the print industry and Konica Minolta has integrated these partners together in our total value proposition. It combines the power and benefits of the cloud, D&A, IoT, mobile, social, artificial intelligence (AI) and security. I believe that this approach will have profound implications as technology transforms industries and business models.

Gavin Jordan-Smith
VP/GM, Industrial Print and Graphic Communications

Gavin Jordan-Smith is responsible for developing the strategic direction to grow Konica Minolta’s solutions business in graphic communications, general office and vertical markets, including oversight of software planning, vertical market strategy, engineering and production print business planning and software development. In his spare time, he enjoys many activities, from hurling tennis rackets with deadly accuracy at small moving objects or jumping off a bridge with a thick elastic rubber band tied to his ankles.