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Industry Trailblazer Greg Gartner Continues Leading Diversified Growth for Gartner Studios

10/02/2013

STILLWATER, MN – July 10, 2013 – -  It began in 1998 with Gartner Studios founder Greg Gartner’s vision to capitalize on the growing trend of desktop publishing by producing a line of creative, quality paper products people could buy in stores and take home to personalize. Working from his spare bedroom with an initial line of self-print Christmas cards, one employee and zero venture capital, Greg Gartner rapidly grew the company, driven by, as he says, “a spirit of innovation — looking at established product categories not through the rear view mirror but through the windshield.”

Today, Gartner Studios is a leader in the print and social stationery, greeting card, wedding, licensed digital design, party goods, and specialty food industries, offering more than 18,000 products through more than 15,000 mass market, boutique, and specialty retail stores in North America.

From his headquarters in a renovated historic post office building in Stillwater, Minnesota, Greg Gartner continues to drive company’s worldwide growth through in-house design and product development, a global sales force, and manufacturing conducted through vendor partnerships in the U.S. and overseas.

As Greg states, “Opportunities come where you make them. Our growth has come through our philosophy of developing and dominating a market niche. This involves having the best product development people in the world, and staying on top of trends. Our chain of distribution is also vital, so we excel in taking care of our retail customers — shipping on-time and creating products that sell.”

Acquisition growth has also taken the company in new directions, including boutique stationery and giftware design powerhouse MARA-MI, and trend-forward office products retailer russell+hazel.

Since 2007, the company has dominated the wedding products marketplace with their BRIDES®Wedding Collection, created in partnership with Conde Nast BRIDES Magazine and sold at Michaels stores nationwide. Additional high-profile partnerships include entrepreneurial retail giants like Martha Stewart. The company also worked with Food Network “Ace of Cakes” star and celebrity baker Duff Goldman to create the Duff Goldman by Gartner Studios line of cake baking and decorating products.

 

In 2013, Greg is taking the company’s assets further into the digital realm, including the Gartner Digital Design Licensing Program — offering Gartner’s broad library of digital designs to major retailers and photo platform providers, to be used in photo cards, greeting cards, invitations, announcements, photo collages, borders, banners, posters, photo book designs and themed slideshow movies. Art content is available for all consumer platforms, including online, social, kiosk, and mobile.

Also launched is the company’s best-in-class, template driven Personalization Tool, that can be linked to or integrated with retail partner websites to let customers create personalized cards and products using Gartner’s innovative designs. Consumers can choose from a selection of fonts, design colors, paper types and card shapes, with real-time editing and preview, to create a truly personal expression — delivered directly to their doorstep.

As a testament to Greg’s vision and leadership, Gartner Studios was selected by Inc. Magazine as one of the Top 500 fastest growing private companies in America. Greg Gartner was also selected as an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year award winner for the Upper Midwest, and Twin Cities Business Entrepreneur of the Year in the Retail category.

Greg is actively involved with “Kids in Need” — a Florida-based, national resource center that supplies school supplies to children in need. He has been recognized for his philanthropic efforts with the “Top Donor Award” from School Home Office Products Association.