Allen Signs drives car showroom makeover with HP Latex

A car dealership in Lincoln reopened for business this summer with a transformed interior showroom featuring sophisticated wall graphics as well as refreshed exterior signage, all produced by Allen Signs using HP Latex technology.

Now in the hands of David Allen, Allen Signs was founded as a traditional sign-writing business by David’s parents in 1965. As it developed it moved into vehicle graphics, still a strong market for the company alongside practically every other sign and display application – from neon signs to exhibition pop-ups. Allen Signs has been producing hire vehicle livery on its HP Latex 360 printer for Dack Motor Group for several years, so when the car dealership decided to put its own stamp on new premises, it got in touch.

The Dack Motor Group project included a combination of raised lettering and Latex-printed wall graphics, all designed, produced and installed by Allen Signs. As well as a complete revamp of the main showroom area – which previously had plain white walls – the kitchen and key station also received a makeover. Externally, existing panels were refreshed with new vinyl signage.

Director David Allen explains why Allen Signs uses an HP Latex 360 for these types of projects. “We’ve dabbled in most printing technologies over the years but since we bought our first HP Latex printer, an HP Designjet L26500, we haven’t looked back,” he says. “We’ve used a Latex 360 for the past three years and love the flexibility of Latex – we use it for all kinds of sign and display work including vehicle wraps, general signage and floor graphics. I also like how user-friendly it is, with a simple interface and the ability to download profiles directly to the printer. It runs at a low temperature so warms up quickly and prints at fast speeds. Each new HP is a noticeable improvement over older models. We’re considering investing in a new Latex in the coming months.”

While the initial discussions took place in early 2020, the project was put on hold owing to COVID-19 and was eventually completed under social distancing guidelines in June.

Glen Merryweather, Sales & Marketing Director at Lincoln-based Allen Signs, comments: “We’d normally complete this kind of project in one or two weeks but it was put on the back burner, and ended up being one of the team’s first jobs following furlough. In a sense it was back to normality, but of course the installation team was provided with PPE and social distancing training, and worked side by side rather than face to face.”

“The wall graphics are looking good,” Glen, who also designed the graphics, adds. “The combination of print and lettering adds depth and merging images within the pattern is subtle but really effective in the space.”

Like many other businesses in the industry, Allen Signs has been affected by the pandemic but is adapting to constantly changing market needs.

“We printed around 20 rolls of floor media in two to three weeks to manage the demand for floor graphics for social distancing,” says David, adding there has since been ‘a big uptick’ in business.

“I’m optimistic for future,” he says. “At the moment we all have an opportunity to either reassess things or focus on things that work. We’re receiving a lot of orders from businesses who are taking this opportunity to rebrand or refresh their graphics, so I expect we’ll continue to be busy.”


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