By Sally Voth
Cyber technology is killing the printing press, and Impressions Plus Printing and Copying is its latest victim.
After 27 years in business, the Winchester company will no longer take orders after Feb. 15, owner Todd Thompson said.
"The post office is always complaining their number of pieces [is] down," he sad. "I know for a fact every piece that's been mailed for the last several hundred years has been printed or written on somehow."
But, with the Internet, more and more people are paying bills online, getting direct deposits and ordering items off the computer, Thompson said.
He said his business mainly focused on printing and copying, doing small cut-sheet jobs, printing business cards, creating vinyl banners and the like.
"[We're] rather diversified," Thompson explained. "I don't know if that helped us or not."
While that diversification helped at first, "we're not really focused on any one niche in the market," he acknowledged.
"Things have just slowed down," Thompson said.
Located at 111 Featherbed Lane in a building it built 15 years ago, Impressions Plus has half the staff today than it did in its heyday. Thompson doesn't know what he'll do once business closes.
"I don't know that anybody here knows what they're going to do," he sad. "This is what I have done for 27 years. I don't know how good I am at doing something else."
Some of his remaining employees are getting job offers, Thompson said.
"We're down from a high at one point of 22 employees," he said. "We're now down to 11. The ones that are left are pretty good. I think most people here will be OK. I will not be."
Online competitors can offer cheaper products at any time of the day or night, Thompson said. Plus, they can avoid sales tax.
"The 5 percent hurts," Thompson said. "That's Internet sales. That's going to become a bigger and bigger issue the larger Internet sales become."
Thompson's final message to the public is an exhortation to support local businesses.
"I would definitely suggest very strongly buy local," he said.
Contact staff writer Sally Voth at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or firstname.lastname@example.org