Andy Heling, Tara Ebben, and Tim Schuelke, new owners of Blue Print Service Co.
By Ed Avis
Sometimes when the owner of a reprographics shop retires, the doors close for good. In happier cases, new owners pick up where the retiree left off. That’s the case with Blue Print Service Co. in Wisconsin.
Don and Mary Ebben owned Blue Print Service Co. for 34 years and developed a strong, loyal customer base in their two locations, Appleton and Green Bay. As retirement approached, the couple knew that creating a smooth transition to new owners would maintain the value they had built up. So they began that process a couple of years ago by slowly turning over the day-to-day operations to their key employees.
“Don and Mary had already turned over the operational reins to us well before they retired,” says Andy Heling, the new company president. “The business turned over, but nothing really changed. We have the same programs and same customers. It was a fluid change.”
Heling, who previously was production manager of the company’s Appleton location, purchased the company together with Tim Schuelke, who is now vice president and previously was manager of the Green Bay location, and Tara Ebben. Tara, the daughter of Don and Mary, is the treasurer/secretary of the company and manages accounts payable and receiveivable.
Heling says the company primarily serves the AEC market, and that won’t change. “We don’t want to lose that focus,” he says.
In addition to traditional printing, scanning, and document management, the company has a vital FM department called Work Space, and they lease Oce/Canon equipment to a large number of clients.
Blue Print Service Co. also provides an online planroom using ReproConnect. Heling says they provide the tech support for subcontractors using the planroom to make sure the experience is good for them.
“If it doesn’t work well, it reflects poorly on the GC,” he says. “Our clients trust us because we make sure everything runs smoothly.”
The company, which has 10 employees, was founded in 1967, and Heling sees many decades of success ahead of them.
“We provide a valuable service to the community, and we have strong relationships with our customers,” he says. “We want to grow this business.”