Sun and Honey

Cox Printer

7. Affordable and Clean Energy 8. Decent Work and Economic Growth 11. Sustainable Cities and Communities 13. Climate Action 15. Life on Land

Overview

Printer companies need a lot of energy. In order to use electricity that does not generate CO2 emissions, Cox Printers has installed Solar and Wind electricity generation on their roof. The "Cox Team" has been sharing the information about the advantages of it and a lot of companies have installed them too as a result. Also, they use the space that is between the solar panels and the wind turbines to develop a green roof with flowers, plants but also beehives. All of that has decreased the amount of CO2 emissions, generated available works (developing the wind/soñar systems) but also increased the quality and quantity of nature in the city of Linden.

Authors

German Quesada

German Quesada

Joanne Gallegos

Joanne Gallegos

Leo Dalesandro

Leo Dalesandro

Quentie Kyeremateng

Quentie Kyeremateng

School

Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU)

Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU)

Professor

Kent Fairfield

Kent Fairfield

Innovation

Our group interviewed the president and owner of Cox Printers, Mike Kaufman. Cox Printers is a printing and marketing company. The company began its operations in 1907 and was purchased by his family in 1984. This company is a family-oriented business that demonstrates a true family business that has over time consisted of husbands and wives who have put in their all to run the company. Our goal in this task was to learn more about the business innovations going on in the company.

Mike Kaufman stated that the printing industry has gone so far. People have told him that they no longer need paper and how printing was going to eventually die out. However, he never listened because now he is the one with a business that is up and running. Reinventing his business was a big factor for change and innovation. The core of their business is printing where they create postcards and flyers.

In addition, their services have changed in where they offer warehouse and distribution and trade show management to help their customers get more business and run more profitably. They want their customers to thrive in making their companies stronger and helping them save money and stretch their budget. He expressed how he is all about making a difference in the world wherever he is going and making a difference in the community with food drives and book fairs.

Mike Kaufman stated, “We can pay people to sit around and twiddle their thumbs or we could stick them in a van to go get canned foods and take them to help out with shelters. Whatever we can do to make a difference with clients and our community, we are all for it.” He bases this off the belief that what you put out will come right back to you. A good vendor is just as great as a good customer so he thrives on being great and reliable. On the sustainability side of things he has customers who want to use his business because they know they are doing the right things and caring about the planet while simultaneously competing with other companies.

The individuals involved in the innovation were his employees. He has many employees that are on board with building a profitable company. Some of his team members have all bought in, and his company has some people who will go above and beyond and know everything there is to know about the company, even the things they don’t need to know or do. But there are some that do their share of work and are still great employees but do not really care about the extra stuff so long as they are doing what is needed to be done by them.

Sun and Honey

Inspiration

The inspiration to go green and have a positive impact for the world stems from his kids. Mike wanted to start looking into the idea of making his business “greener” or more eco-friendly so his kids can live in a environment that's cleaner and more harmless. Since Mike owns the building, he decided to create projects and go “full force” into implementing those ideas he came up with. As a group, we admire Mike’s efforts because he did it for his kids, who may potentially take over the company, and to live in a cleaner and safer environment.

Overall impact

Mike’s impact for the community and for his employee would go along if every business owner would operate how he has operated with Cox Printers. Mike stated, “if every business did just a quarter of what we do, the results would be incredible.” This statement shows that if every business in the community would just put in a small effort for sustainability we would make a huge impact for society. The only issue is that people do not always see the value of it. Therefore, Mike looks for other ways to make an impact. Since he can’t get every small business owner to contribute to sustainability, he goes out to inform or educate what he does with Cox Printers. He also inspires his employee to get involved in sustainability actions which can cause a chain reaction, as his employees can show their friends and family ways to improve sustainability in their lives.

Business benefit

Those projects have reduced the bills increasing the profit. "They have allowed us to increase the number of customers and get to new types of customers because they have chosen us because of our awareness about the environment. Also, their projects have helped us to be more close and have a better environment in the company."

Social and environmental benefit

Cox Printers not only has a very strong customer service base in which they operate for maximum satisfaction, but they pride the business on its green nature and sustainability factors. The structure of the facility is impressively efficient, literally top to bottom. Their machines are specifically designed to use only the required amount of energy for printing needs while sustaining high-quality performance.

As it is known, even though the machines could have the high performance, they still need to use energy that may not be for sustainable. For that reason, Cox Printers has installed a photovoltaic system and wind system in its roof. Those systems use natural resources of that area and do not generate any type of pollution. It is important to mention that this project does not always generate the total amount of energy that is required to keep the company going but this is a project that is not done, Kaufman is planning to cover the whole roof in order to use only green energy.

The social and environmental impact of these projects extends outside his property, as he has been sharing the data, performance, and advantages of those projects in order to motivate the companies that are nearby (but also the ones that are far away) to join into the “green energy” and several have joined. Thanks to that, there is more awareness in the community and in other printer companies about the advantages of solar and wind energy and how to convert to it.

On the other hand, there are other projects unique to COX Printers. As is known, when a building is made, natural area is destroyed but Kaufman has started the Green Roof project in order to help offset that. This project captured some of the CO2 emissions, enabling employees and the community to enjoy nature and to increase the number of insects, which play a vital role in nature. The COX Printers Team has been reusing things like broken children’s slides to make flower beds and putting greens which are an invaluable showcase indicative of how strong his efforts are to be clean and green. Also, part of the Green Roof are two bee hives that have been producing honey for the people of the company and community -- and most importantly, to provide pollinators for the area. They even grow milkweed, a vital source of nourishment for migrating butterflies.

In general, all those projects have been increasing the amount of oxygen and decreasing the positive carbon foot print in that area by using green energy sources and having plants and flowers on the roof. Also, they have increased the social quality of the community because there is more nature near them. As Kaufman says, “Since we have begun, there are more flowers . . .”, and also more available jobs because projects as solar and wind electricity generation systems are getting popular and are generating a lot of them.

Interview

Mike Kaufman, Owner

Photo of interviewee

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Cox Printer

Cox Printer

Teaneck, New Jersey, US

Business Website: http://www.coxprinters.com/

Year Founded: 1907

Number of Employees: 11 to 50

Cox Printers has been motivating printer companies to be more sustainable by setting an example to the companies that are around them. They are not just generating less damage to the world but using their surface area to generate electricity and bring nature back to the city by having a green roof and beehives.