Park Community Enterprises (PCE) has strengthened its relationship with Ricoh with the installation of a Ricoh Ri 2000 DTG printer.

Originally a school reprographics department with a founding principle of marrying education and enterprise, PCE has now grown into a fully-fledged commercial printer. It was set up by the Park Community School, a coeducational community secondary school in Hampshire, as a business but also as a vehicle to offer students a safe and realistic environment for work experience. However it has since developed into a legal business entity offering print services to the school, other schools and local businesses.

Throughout that period of growth PCE has been an early adopter of Ricoh’s print technology and recently identified DTG as a core area of opportunity, hence the investment in the Ri 2000. The new printer, which is up and running at PCE’s Havant premises, is suitable for printing virtually any digital image onto products including T-shirts, polo shirts, face masks, hoodies, tote bags, cushion covers and much more.

Gary Dickens, one of the directors of PCE, explained, ‘When we started, the idea was to try and establish a profitable company and to offer as many employment, training and life skill opportunities to as many students as possible, initially at our own school and then other schools.

‘Early on I had a meeting with Ricoh because we had an issue that needed sorting. I was geared up for a tough encounter, but the Ricoh team was surprisingly open, honest and straightforward. I was extremely impressed with that, and that approach has continued throughout my entire relationship with Ricoh to this day. I’ve never felt that I was not listened to, and you don’t get that with many suppliers.’

As a commercial printer, PCE provides a range of print services including business cards, letterheads, banners, posters, stickers,  vinyl signs for vehicles and, now, DTG services. 

These services are supported by two Ricoh digital five-colour production presses and one mono press, a range of finishing equipment including a bookletmaker, and several specialist printers. The company also has a Ricoh multifunction printer in reception.

Mr Dickens concluded, ‘Anything that we have bought for PCE over the years that is of any value is from Ricoh. The production kit from Ricoh is the lifeblood of the company, without it we can’t do anything.

‘The Ricoh products are high-quality and the benefit is that I know what I am getting is good. I’ve never been disappointed with a piece of Ricoh kit.’