*NEWS*ISLAND INK-JET SPOTS CONSUMER NEED

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*NEWS*ISLAND INK-JET SPOTS CONSUMER NEED

 user 2006-05-03 at 11:22:00 am Views: 53
  • #15202

    Island Ink-jet spots consumer need
    Dick Voce is passionate about ink.
    It doesn’t take long to succumb to his enthusiasm. He holds a wealth of facts about ink and printer cartridges at the tips of his ink-stained fingers. Voce is owner of the Island Ink-jet franchise at 2463 NW 185th Ave. in the Tanasbourne Village shopping center, steps away from the Hillsboro library branch.Until about a year ago, Voce was a stockbroker, continuing a 13-year career. One day his wife sent him to purchase a new printer cartridge, and its $35 cost took him back. The next day he saw a Wall Street Journal article about a promising company based in Vancouver, British Columbia – Island Ink-jet.The company had been rapidly expanding since 2000, opening franchises throughout Canada, the United States and Mexico. They offered a service – refilling printer inkjet cartridges at considerable savings to consumers.Voce saw the appeal. Besides, he says, “Ink is a $34 billion industry.”Voce emphasizes the advantages of dealing with Island Ink-jet rather than do-it-yourself kits or similar services: He and his staff can refill newly emptied cartridges in just five minutes, and their work carries a 30-day guarantee.They also have 15 printers on site to test refills before the customer leaves the store.Island Ink-jet’s corporate center maintains a research and development team to stay ahead of printer manufacturer changes. Voce says they recognize the tricks manufacturers play: losing money on cheap printers while making it up on expensive cartridges.One markets a new printer that takes a cartridge the same physical size as an older model but holding far less ink, he says. Some cartridges also contain a chip that resets on empty, so the printer no longer responds if the cartridge is refilled and loaded.Island Ink-jet has tools to counter such practices, which otherwise might force consumers into buying new, full-price cartridges.
    “We have no generic ink,” Voce says. “We use a comparable quality to the original manufacturers’ formulas.” To illustrate, he holds up a box containing several different “yellows,” just a few of the many different shades he stocks to match varied cartridge requirements.
    Island Ink-jet also stocks some pre-filled cartridges for those who don’t have a spare or want a backup. These, like other cartridges, can usually be refilled eight to 10 times.Voce says that during February, 42 percent of his business was either from repeat customers or referrals. The explanation? “The bottom line is,” he says, “people know they’re getting ripped off” if they buy full-price ink cartridges.
    Web site at http://www.islandinkjet.com. ;