Concerns for Canterbury printer Omicron Repro over the name of the latest Covid variant.
Bosses at Omicron Repro “were left in disbelief when they realised their business shares its name with the latest strain of coronavirus”.
But managing director Mark Fawcett-Jones has been positive and that the business had not seen any drop in work as a result.
“As soon as I heard about the new variant I thought ‘oh no’, I was quite shocked and worried – we didn’t want it to have a bad effect on us because we’ve only just got round to getting ourselves back on our feet since the pandemic started.
“And then I started getting messages from friends that were negative, but my colleague who does our Instagram was getting messages from our customers and they were all positive. So I hope this won’t harm us.”
He added the company’s customers have struggled with the name for years, often misspelling it in emails, “but now they know what it is!”.
Fawcett-Jones originally owned a company called Plan Xpress but acquired Omicron Reprographics in 2008 from its retiring Greek owner – who originally named the business – and decided to retain the brand, albeit altering it slightly to Omicron Repro, with the Plan Xpress name instead phased out.
Fawcett-Jones and director Dave Loveridge were pictured outside the company’s premises in Breaking Bad costumes but Fawcett-Jones stressed that the business was not trying to make fun of the situation.
“It is a serious thing and it’s a worrying time as well with a new variant – we’re all a bit scared about that and worried about where it’s going to take us – but we just wanted to maybe put a smile on some people’s faces.”
Specialising in same-day print including business cards, flyers, brochures and signage, Omicron Repro serves a wide range of clients, including a large student base in Canterbury, which has two universities with a lot of architecture students.
The eight-staff business runs HP Latex and DesignJet T3500 wide-format printers, Konica Minolta digital presses, and a Summa cutter in-house.