Kinko’s, the brick-and-mortar copy center king, announced today that it has formed an alliance with iPrint, an online provider of print shop technology. The new service will offer custom printing solutions to both businesses and individuals.
Kinko’s is using iPrint’s iKiosk technology to power the new service. Customers can now design and order products such as business cards, letterheads, envelopes, labels, invitations and other stationery items by visiting customprinting.kinkos.com.
Online visual proofs are provided before products are printed. In addition, an online tracking system is used to make sure purchases are delivered on time.
“This initiative underscores our commitment to providing customers with the best possible services to meet their needs, both online and in our branches,” said Rick Davis, vice present of product management for Kinko’s. Davis believes that the service will be most ideal for “resource-strapped small businesses who tend to have multiple custom printing needs, such as business cards, stationery, envelopes and labels.”
Kinko’s Shores Up Online Business
Kinko’s, a private company with over 1,000 locations and 25,000 employees in nine countries, has recently made a variety of announcements related to its Internet business. In June, the company unveiled a new scanning and image-hosting service in its copy centers. The new service allows customers to bring in photos, scan them in and store them on Kinko’s Web server for more than 30 days.
A cross-marketing deal with eBay and a e-commerce conference with Sprint and Apple computer have also kept Kinko’s in the news.
Founded in 1997, iPrint is a private company whose investors include Intel, Information Technology Ventures and Canaan Partners. IPrint bills itself as the primary supplier of online kiosk systems to the commercial printing industry.
In addition to offering printing services, iPrint sells clothing and other products on its Web site. IPrint.com features a pet shop, a baby shop and a store for people who are moving.