UK: A new company has announced its intention to fill the gap left by the closure of EDC's UK disc manufacturing facility in Blackburn, writes Elizabeth Toppin. The Blackburn facility closed on December 31, but former EDC manager Grant Mitchell (pictured) has established Quick Discs, a CD brokering service aimed primarily at the music industry.
"Our aim is to restore manufacturing capacity and to provide continuity of service to musicians, distributors and record labels across the country," Mitchell told One to One, which belongs to the same UBM publishing group as Pro Sound News Europe.
Based in Blackburn, near to EDC's original site, Quick Discs was founded on the premise that many UK music producers - one of the company's primary customer groups - would be left without a specialist supplier. Mitchell believed that there was a need for a service provider to cater for their needs, offering all the elements that go into the production, printing and packaging of all kinds of optical disc. He set up Quick Discs in May of 2009 and the company started trading in July, although he remained at EDC until the final closure of the facility in December.
"The management at EDC notified all their customers in the UK of the cessation of services at the end of the year. I cleared it with them that, once these notifications had been sent and acknowledged, I could then contact the customers to offer them the services of Quick Discs," explained Mitchell.
Quick Discs now has over 70 clients, close to 60 of which were former EDC clients, and it is said to have been very successful since the July launch. While the company does have some larger clients, customers tend to be smaller companies, according to Mitchell. "Much larger clients are happy to deal direct with the manufacturers, but smaller companies prefer to have an element of 'hand-holding' from someone who knows the disc manufacturing industry. They like the personal touch.
"Quick Discs is partly about convenience and maintaining supply capacity but it's also about adding value for clients in specific industries. On the convenience side, we're doing all we can to make it 'business as usual' for former customers; we know that people don't want to waste time and money changing artwork templates for discs or packaging, so we're adopting exactly the same processes, pricing structures and distribution mechanisms that clients have been used to.
"But more than that, we're also adding new services that we know people are looking for. For example, we've introduced an offset litho printing facility that enables photo quality printing on discs and packaging, and we're offering a bespoke packaging service that opens up all sorts of new creative opportunities for those involved in the design, production and distribution of music, videos and other media."