The Late 1980's
Founded by Mike Glupker as Diversified Data Services Incorporated, starts operating as a list broker with a mullet. Future business partner Pete Houlihan prefers swinging on the playground during recess over climbing on the monkey bars.
The Early 1990’s
Increased demand means a new location and the addition of direct mail services. Mike hires his wife, Brenda, to work at DDS. He introduces her to a client as his "newest employee" and then immediately regrets doing so.
The Middle 1990’s
Mike sells his business and he and Brenda move to Grosse Pointe near Detroit where Mike becomes an account manager for a company specializing in adult briefs. Diapers. He sells adult diapers. Meanwhile Pete Houlihan graduates from Traverse City Senior High School and heads for Hope College in Holland, Michigan.
A large bag of adult briefs in Mike’s possession blows open at the airport as he is boarding a plane. Mike is forced to chase down the wind-scattered undergarments. After this event, he and Brenda move back to Grand Rapids and re-acquire Diversified Data Services. Meanwhile Pete moves to Chicago and opens sole proprietorship installing window treatments in the greater Chicago area. Pete closes the sole proprietorship installing window treatments and moves to Grand Rapids where he lands a job driving a delivery van for The Printery, the small format commercial printing division of the SVH Group, located in Holland, Michigan.
As commercial printers look to expand into direct mail, Mike sells Diversified Data Services to the SVH Group of printing and packaging companies while continuing to manage the business for the new owners. During this time he meets Pete Houlihan who is now President of The Printery. Mike and Pete hit it off immediately. Both are family men, energetic, and share the belief that one is almost as talented as the other. Peers in management roles find them tiring and somewhat hard to follow.
Mike and Pete decide to acquire Diversified Data Services in order to capitalize on the growing market for digital printing and direct mail. Mike signs on a napkin over beer not to sell the company ever again and the partnership begins in earnest. Moments after the final handshake, the world’s financial markets are obliterated. Not being smart enough to have concern, Mike and Pete begin adding digital printing technology with the investment of three KM6500 print engines. The two can be found running them personally at odd hours.
Growing significantly throughout 2008 and 2009, Diversified Data Services invests in wide-format digital printing with the purchase of a Fuji Acuity Flatbed UV press. They begin to garner attention as regional leaders in digital printing and direct mail. With the momentum of this positive reputation building, they strip all logos and branding from their delivery van, which has more dents than wheels and is missing a catalytic converter. They deem it best not to connect the company with the vehicle.
HP Indigo 7500 is added, moving Diversified Data Services to the forefront of digital printing technology. During this year, the company relocates to a beautiful new facility to accommodate growth. Mike’s drive increases by 16 minutes, Pete’s decreases by 5 but to this day he refuses to acknowledge this fact.
HP Indigo 5500 is added to support growth and provide redundancy in operations. Company re-brands as Brightformat to best reflect culture and brand position.