• 05/24/2021 10:07 AM | Eliana Franklin (Administrator)


    Company to offer selection of speakers from corporate gifting powerhouse

    PITTSBURGH, PA —May 24, 2021— PCNA is excited to announce the addition of Bose, the leaders of sound innovation, to their industry-leading technology lineup. PCNA now offer select Bluetooth® speakers, which are stocked in-house at PCNA’s Pittsburgh warehouse and are available for quick turn through the company’s SureShip® service.

    When asked about their newest retail brand, Liz Haesler, Chief Merchandising Officer for PCNA explains, “This is about more than just offering products from one of the greatest sound companies in the world, it’s about making sure our customers can rely on PCNA for all their needs. Bose is a brand known around the globe for their unmatched sound quality and PCNA is known in the industry for our dedication to technology and product safety, with an entire team in place who works solely on this product category,” Haesler continues. “We are extremely honored to offer Bose products as part of our tech assortment.”

    “It gives us great pleasure to align with PCNA to bring a selection of Bose speakers to the promotional products market,” according to a representative of Bose’s authorized distributor for corporate gifts and incentives. “We are a company that prides ourselves on representing Bose for corporate gifts, incentives and rewards. In talking with the PCNA tech team, we understand that they share those same values through both product development and decoration. We have full trust in them to bring these products to promo.”

    By housing Bose inventory at their warehouse, PCNA can accommodate large orders through both inventory and their best-in-class decorating capacity. Better yet, by inventorying products on-site, PCNA will be able to accommodate quick-turn orders through their SureShip service so customer orders can ship out next-day if needed.

    “We have also received feedback from customers that a brand like Bose would be a great addition to our Perfectly Packaged™ offering,” Haesler mentions. “A brand as recognizable and sought after as Bose makes a great gift on its own but we love that we can take it one step further by having an option to pair a Bose speaker with other PCNA items for a custom gift set that can be drop shipped right to people’s homes.”

    PCNA currently has two Bose Bluetooth® speaker styles available, the Bose Soundlink Micro Bluetooth® Speaker and the Bose Soundlink Revolve II Bluetooth® Speaker, with plans to expand the product selection in the future. Both speakers are sold decorated. You can view the Bose collection at PCNA.com.

    #    #   #

    About PCNA

    PCNA is a wholly owned subsidiary of Polyconcept, the world ’s leading promotional products supplier. With headquarters near Pittsburgh, Pa., PCNA operates Trimark, Leed ’s, Bullet, JournalBooks and ETS Express, offering customers the industry ’s biggest and most diverse collection of products. To learn more, go to www.pcna.com.


    Kara Reilly

    Marketing Specialist


  • 03/04/2021 4:01 PM | Eliana Franklin (Administrator)

    PPAI Opposes Threat To Independent Contractor Model

    New legislation has been proposed in Congress that would effectively ban independent contractor classifications under federal labor law. The Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act, H.R. 842, amends the National Labor Relations Act to establish a new definition of employees which expressly eliminates independent contractors in the U.S. The new legislation makes a broad presumption that all workers in the U.S. are employees unless each element of a newly established “ABC” test can be demonstrated. PPAI is opposed to the PRO Act because, if signed into law, it would significantly change how thousands of promotional products companies interact with each other, and it will eliminate jobs in our industry.
    Specifically, the PRO Act would eliminate independent contractor agreements, enforce government control over private employment contracts and significantly broaden risk exposure to joint employer liability.

    The legislation also sets new criteria for determining occupational status as an independent contractor instead of an employee. The proposed new criteria entail a three-pronged test for which each of the requirements must be proven if an independent contractor wants to retain his or her status under federal labor law.

    The House is expected to consider H.R. 842 during the week of March 8, with a possible vote happening by the end of the week.

    Please click here to email and call members of Congress to educate them about why independent contractors in the promotional products industry do not want to be forced to reclassify as employees.

    Read more about this developing story in Thursday’s PPB Newslink.  For this and more industry news, click here.

    Used with permission from PPAI Publications

  • 01/22/2021 11:22 AM | Eliana Franklin (Administrator)

    Towel Specialties wins Counselor Magazine Distributor Choice Awards in two categories


    (Baltimore, MD) For the 15th consecutive year, Towel Specialties was awarded the Counselor Magazine Distributor Choice Award by ASI on January 21st as the “Best Towel and Robe Supplier.”  Additionally, at the same event, Towel Specialties/ Cobblestone Mills was also recognized as the ‘Best Blanket Supplier” for the second time in three years.

    “Given everything that our industry went through in 2020,” said Shawn Kanak, the recently promoted president at Towel Specialties, “this meant more to us than ever before.  Competing with the pandemic, trying to stay safe, and striving to provide outstanding service to our customers was a challenge, but we’re happy that our efforts were recognized among voters in the industry.”

    Towel Specialties has been selected as the ‘Best Towel and Robe Supplier” every year since 2007.  They introduced the Xpress Towels line in 2014 and Cobblestone Mills in 2016.  In 2018, Towel Specialties was selected as the ASI Supplier of the Year.

    1200 67th Street ­ Baltimore ­ Maryland ­ 21237

    800-938-6935 ­  410-525-1900 ­ Fax. 410-525-2222 ­  www.towelspecialties.com  ­ ASI 91605  ­ PPAI 113150


    800-938-6935     I    murray@towelspecialties.com

  • 01/21/2021 9:25 PM | Eliana Franklin (Administrator)

    The PPEF applications for college scholarships are now open!

    PPEF is an educational, charitable, nonprofit organization that awards college scholarships to students who have a parent working in the promotional products industry or who are working for a company in the industry. Since 1989, PPEF has awarded $2,448,000 in college scholarships to 1,358 students.

    In 2021, $278,750 will be awarded in college scholarships. 33 recipients will receive renewal payments on scholarships awarded in previous years. 127 new scholarships will be awarded: 10 Four-Year College Scholarships, 2 Chairman's Scholarships, 114 One-Year College Scholarships, including the Named Scholarships listed below, and 1 Friends of PPMN Scholarship.

    PPEF is proud to award the following Named Scholarships:  Vincent J. Arena Scholarship, Stanley L. Breckenridge Scholarship, Castelli North America Scholarship, four Almand "Bo" Carroll Leadership Awards, Robert D. Davis Scholarship, Ted E. Dennison, MAS Scholarship, Maureen and Thomas Dugan Scholarship, Jayne Emoff Miller Scholarship, Fran Ford Scholarship, Lorraine Hempen Scholarship, Glen Holt Scholarship, Helen and Al Mackler and Joseph Alexander Scholarship, George C. Matteson, Jr. Scholarship, Jack and Marty Nadel Scholarship, Janelle Nevins Scholarship, NWPMA Success Scholarship, H. Ted Olson Scholarship, PMANC Campbell M. Brown Memorial Scholarship, PPAChicago Scholarship, PPAS Scholarship, Reciprocity Road Roadie Scholarship, Sam Rosenblum Scholarship, Bill Schmidt, Sr. Scholarship, David Lawrence Sharp Scholarship, Paul E. Smith Scholarship, The UMAPP Collegiate Scholarship, William F. "Bill" Vernon Scholarship and David Woods Family Scholarship. These scholarships are awarded to outstanding students who meet all requirements for the One-Year Scholarships. Please complete the application for the Four-Year Scholarships (high school seniors) or One-Year Scholarships (current college students) to be considered for the Named Scholarships.

    PPEF's scholarship awards are determined through a competitive application process with the recipients being announced at the end of May each year.

    General requirements for all college scholarships:

    • Scholarships are available to full-time promotional products industry employees or their dependent children.
    • Scholarships are available for undergraduate education only except for the Friends of PPMN Scholarship which may be used for undergraduate or graduate level coursework.
    • Students must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 to apply.
    • Applicants may apply for more than one scholarship if all requirements are met. Special note: The Four-Year College Scholarships will be awarded first. Applicants not receiving a Four-Year College Scholarship will be automatically considered for the One-Year College Scholarships and Named Scholarships so a separate application is not required.
    • To be considered for the need-based scholarships, PPEF must receive a copy of the Student Aid Report that a student receives after filing the FAFSA.
    • Application deadline is March 15 at Midnight Central Time.

    Please review the application forms for more specific guidelines and requirements.

    The scholarship applications for 2021 are now open! The application deadline is March 15, 2021. Click on the application links below to apply.


  • 11/17/2020 2:01 PM | Eliana Franklin (Administrator)

    PPAI Announces Departure Of President/CEO

    Promotional Products Association International (PPAI) President and CEO Paul Bellantone, CAE, will conclude his employment with the Association at the end of March 2021, marking the end of more than 20 years of service to the Association. “The past 20-plus years have been nothing short of extraordinary,” Bellantone said. “This decision was not easy, but I am confident knowing that our strong staff and dedicated Board of Directors have PPAI in a solid position to move forward to protect, grow and engage the promotional products industry.” Bellantone notified the Board in late October of his intention to conclude his tenure before his next contract extension which was set to begin on April 1, 2021.

    PPAI Board Chair Ira Neaman, MAS, said, “The Board and countless others in the industry are so grateful for Paul’s many years of leadership and dedication to serve and engage the industry. Under his leadership, PPAI has grown and evolved into one of the most respected associations worldwide. I am truly thankful for all Paul has done for PPAI, including instilling a strong ‘confidence to evolve’ mentality among the PPAI Board, staff and volunteer corps.” Executive Vice President Robert (Bob) McLean, Jr., CPA, CAE, CEM, said, “Paul has been an inspirational leader and advocate of the PPAI community and the industry. Due to his tireless leadership and team building, our staff and volunteer leaders are well-positioned for this change and to continue to move the Association forward.”

    Bellantone added, “It has been a pleasure to serve the Association and I am tremendously appreciative of the opportunities I have been given and for the relationships I have built during my time with PPAI. It is no secret that this has been a challenging year for many, both personally and professionally. But with such challenges come opportunities to evolve and thrive. That’s why I believe this is not only the right time for me, but the best time for PPAI.”

    PPAI’s mission to grow, protect, inform and engage its members and the industry remains foremost. Coupled with a focused and strategic continuity plan, the Board and leadership staff will work closely with Bellantone over the coming months to evaluate internal and external market conditions against the needs of the members, industry and the Association. These efforts will ensure a smooth transition that will drive meaningful value and the long-term success of the Association.

    About PPAI

    Founded in 1903, the Promotional Products Association International (
    PPAIppai.org) is the world’s largest and oldest not-for-profit association serving more than 15,500 corporate members of the $24.7 billion promotional products industry, which is comprised of more than 40,500 businesses and a workforce of more than 533,000 professionals. PPAI represents the industry in Washington, D.C. and advocates on its behalf. PPAI operates The PPAI Expo, the industry’s largest trade show; provides the leading promotional products safety and compliance program; offers a prestigious professional development and certification program; and publishes industry trade journals and periodicals. The multibillion-dollar industry includes wearables, writing instruments, calendars, drinkware and many other items, usually imprinted with a company’s name, logo or message. For more information, visit PPAI.org and follow us on Twitter @PPAI_HQFacebookInstagramYouTube and Pinterest.

  • 11/05/2020 3:35 PM | Eliana Franklin (Administrator)

    SAGE® Releases SAGE Mobile10.0

    The industry’s most popular mobile app has been upgraded to the newest version, SAGE Mobile 10.0. The app now features Project Management, where distributors can easily view and manage all projects with just one tool

    Addison, Texas (November 5, 2020) – SAGE, the leading provider of information, marketing, and business management solutions to the promotional products industry, announces the release of SAGE Mobile™ 10.0. The app, available for iOS and Android devices, allows industry distributors easy access to all their critical research and business management operations while on the go.

    SAGE Mobile™ 10.0 now includes the Project Management area, introduced earlier this year in SAGE Online 16. This highly praised feature allows distributors to easily view and manage projects, all while improving their team's organization. The Project Management area was created exclusively for the promotional products industry and can be customized to each distributor's specific workflow.

    “Our goal has always been to take our features and modules from SAGE Online and incorporate them into SAGE Mobile, providing clients with the same experience, but on the go,” said SAGE President, David Natinsky, MAS. “We are thrilled to add the Project Management area to SAGE Mobile, because now you can oversee your projects and track the status from anywhere.” 

    Some additional new features in the SAGE Mobile™ 10.0 release include:

    ·       Dynamic font sizing for SAGE Chat

    ·       Ratings now includes supplier and product ratings

    ·       Leave comments on your supplier and product ratings

    ·       Select custom suppliers in addition to SAGE suppliers for forms in Order Management

    ·       Share presentations via text messaging

    ·       SAGE Chat status automatically goes to “away” when leave chat area

    ·       Unread SAGE Chat notifications on app badge icon

    SAGE Mobile™ 10.0 is available now. Current SAGE Total Access subscribers can download SAGE Mobile™ for free from the Apple App Store, Google Play, or the Amazon App Store. For users who have automatic app updates turned on, the update will download automatically.

    About SAGE

    SAGE, based in Addison, Texas, is the leading provider of information, marketing, and business management solutions to the promotional products industry. In addition to SAGE’s flagship SAGE Online™, SAGE Web™, and SAGE Mobile™ research and business management services, SAGE also provides the industry with other research services, order management, project management, website and email services, e-commerce solutions, end-buyer catalogs, artwork services, payment processing, tradeshows, tradeshow management services, and lead retrieval software. SAGE is also the exclusive technology provider for members of the Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), the industry’s non-profit association, as well as Promotional Products Professionals of Canada (PPPC), Canada’s non-profit association. For more information, please visit www.sageworld.com or call 800.925.7243.

    Bille Forman

    Director of Marketing


    214.631.6000 x4539

  • 10/15/2020 4:16 PM | Eliana Franklin (Administrator)

    Janet McMaster, MAS
    2020 PPAI RAC Volunteer

    PPAI Honors Janet McMaster, MAS, As 2020 PPAI RAC Volunteer Award Recipient

    IRVING, TX, (September 17, 2019) – Promotional Products Association International (PPAI; ppai.org), the world’s largest not-for-profit trade association serving the more than 15,500 corporate members of the $24.7 billion promotional products industry, has named Janet McMaster, MAS, the recipient of the 2020 PPAI RAC (Regional Association Council) Volunteer Award. McMaster is the regional vice president at Geiger, a Lewiston, Maine-headquartered promotional products distributor. She received the award on October 15 during the PPAI Leadership Development Workshop.

    The PPAI RAC Volunteer Award is presented annually to regional association members who have demonstrated an outstanding level of volunteerism and leadership and who have made significant and measurable contributions to a regional association. McMaster is the 18th recipient of the laurel, which has been awarded annually since 2010.

    McMaster is currently serving a three-year term on the Promotional Products Education Foundation’s (PPEF) Board of Trustees and has a distinguished history of service with the industry’s regional associations. She served as a leader for the Philadelphia Area Promotional Products Association (PAPPA) from 2004-2005 and from 2007-2010 as well as on the board of the Carolinas Association of Advertising and Marketing Professionals (CAAMP) board from 2012-2017, where she served as board president in 2015. She also served on the RAC board from 2015-2018, presiding as president in 2017.

    During her years of volunteer service, McMaster is credited with establishing a new education program, Rapid Fire Presentations, at the CAAMP Carolinas Connection Show in 2012, which has become an annual event, and she facilitated the RAC board’s creation of a new three-year strategic plan during her term as president. She was named a PPAI Fellow in 2016.

    Along with her service to the regional community and PPEF, McMaster has volunteered in many capacities with PPAI. She served on the Professional Development Committee in 2013-2014, the PPAI Women’s Leadership Conference Workgroup in 2013-2014, the RAC Volunteer Advisory Group in 2016 and the Donna Hall Memorial Grant Committee in 2015.

  • 10/05/2020 9:50 PM | Eliana Franklin (Administrator)


    Addison, Texas (September 28, 2020) – SAGE is pleased to announce that the Promotional Marketing Association of Northern California (PMANC) has joined the SAGE Affiliate Program, a customized program designed to give regional associations in the promotional products industry and their members special access to SAGE’s business management products and services.

    “We couldn’t be more excited to partner with the Promotional Marketing Association of Northern California and provide their members with access to cutting-edge business management solutions for every aspect of their operations,” said Jarod Thorndike, Director of Business Development at SAGE. “SAGE tries to go above and beyond for regional associations, and the SAGE Affiliate Program is one way we can show it.”

    SAGE offers PMANC distributor members a 10% discount on products and services including websites, company stores, and SAGE Total Access subscriptions. The Total Access subscription consists of SAGE Online, the promotional product industry’s most popular product research and business management solution; SAGE Web, the browser-based platform to access SAGE products from any device with web access; and SAGE Mobile, the full-featured mobile application for iOS and Android devices.

    In addition, all members subscribing to SAGE Total Access will receive a full membership to Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), the world's largest not-for-profit association for the more than $23 billion promotional products industry. This is part of the Power of Two program, in which SAGE and PPAI have entered into a strategic alliance to provide the industry with the combined benefits of a PPAI membership and SAGE products and services.

    PMANC members who are SAGE subscribers may contact SAGE to learn more about custom offerings, effective as of the next renewal. New association members who add SAGE services can be informed of their options by noting their specific association membership on their application.

    To learn more about the SAGE Affiliate Program, visit go.sageworld.com/affiliate.

    About SAGE

    SAGE, based in Addison, Texas, is the leading provider of information, marketing, and business management solutions to the promotional products industry. In addition to SAGE’s flagship SAGE Online™, SAGE Web™, and SAGE Mobile™ research and business management services, SAGE also provides the industry with other research services, order management, project management, website and email services, e-commerce solutions, end-buyer catalogs, artwork services, payment processing, tradeshows, tradeshow management services, and lead retrieval software. SAGE is also the exclusive technology provider for members of the Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), the industry’s non-profit association as well as Promotional Products Professionals of Canada (PPPC), Canada’s non-profit association. For more information, please visit www.sageworld.com or call 800.925.7243.

  • 10/02/2020 11:10 PM | Eliana Franklin (Administrator)

    ZOOM catalog Adds Rob Alley as Director of Marketing

    Boulder, CO, October 1, 2020 – Rob Alley has been hired to lead marketing for ZOOMcatalog; the industry’s leader in digital marketing technologies. Alley will play a key role in all branding, product and digital marketing, growth initiatives, sales enablement, customer experience, internal and external communications, and more. 

    “We couldn’t be more thrilled to announce Rob has joined our team. He’s a perfect fit for ZOOMcatalog as he brings years of experience across the promotional products industry and B2B technology services.” --Bryony Zasman, Co-Founder.

    Alley, based in Seattle, will make an immediate impact resulting from his unique mix of positions at the distributors BDA and Juice Marketing, plus the supplier iClick, where he was responsible for all marketing activities, while helping drive go-to-market strategies and business development. Alley has also been a senior product marketer at B2B SaaS providers ProQuest and Nintex.

    “I’m super excited to join ZOOMcatalog, a true technology innovator. I believe my blend of experience will benefit the company, as well as promotional products suppliers, distributors, and end-users," Alley said.

    About ZOOMcatalog 

    ZOOMcatalog is a leading technology provider in the promotional products industry, helping companies customize and share powerful digital marketing materials.

  • 09/28/2020 3:53 PM | Eliana Franklin (Administrator)

    Dear CAAMP Members,

    I’m excited to confirm that effective January 1, 2021, BIC Graphic is changing our company name to Koozie Group! As a leading promotional products supplier, we are evolving as a company to better provide reliable and comprehensive solutions that help customers build their brand image and continue to work together to leave positive, lasting memories. It makes sense to change our name to best reflect this vision and mission. A new name separates us from our old parent company and aligns with our future business goals.

    We will continue to operate as BIC Graphic through the end of 2020, until we officially make the switch to Koozie Group on January 1, 2021 but wanted to give you advanced notice of what will change.

    EVERYTHING remains the same except the below changes will go into effect on January 1, 2021:

    ·       Our PPAI UPIC number will change to KOOZIEGP

    ·       Our “Bill/Remit to” name will change to Koozie Group

    ·       bicgraphic.com will change to kooziegroup.com

    ·       Industry portal product listings will be under Koozie Group; still searchable by their item #

    ·       All marketing collateral and communication will be branded Koozie Group and come from email addresses ending in @m.kooziegroup.com

    As we get closer to January, updated email addresses will be provided. Until then, please continue to use our existing email addresses as outlined below:

    ·       General Customer Service questions: customerservice@bicgraphic.com

    ·       Send your Orders directly to: orders@bicgraphic.com

    ·       For 24-Hour Service orders: 24Hour@bicgraphic.com

    ·       For Random Samples & Collateral requests: samples@bicgraphic.com

    Keep an eye out for new Koozie Group branding, messaging and more exciting things to come!

    You can learn more about how we are making a change for good and how we plan to keep the good going® at bicgraphic.com/US/change-for-good.

    If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out! Our team is ready to help with any concerns and process transitions as we become Koozie Group. Please visit bicgraphic.com for updates throughout 2020.

    All the best,

    Harold Wood,Field Sales And RAC Board President

    732-552-7434, Harold.wood@bicgraphic.com



PO Box 949

Waynesboro, PA 17268



501 (c) 6 non-profit.

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software