ISG (Integrated Sign & Graphic), based in Lexington, KY has operated since 1988. They have grown to a 45-employee operation that serves clients in industries such as retail/mixed-use, healthcare, hospitality and corporate sectors. Fortunately, the Kentucky government has deemed ISG and other sign shops essential businesses because of their support of the construction industry. Aaron Anderkin, ISG’s executive vice president, said that receiving an essential status in the effort to combat COVID-19 has inspired the company to produce several COVID-19-specific products. These products include PPE face shields for healthcare workers and first responders, sneeze guards for public spaces, freestanding printed signs that facilitate carryout or remote ordering, and window graphics that outline COVID-19 safety precautions. All virus-related products are being sold at cost. One key adjustment for ISG’s production process was developing a clean-room space that provided the sanitary conditions necessary to produce face shields for healthcare usage.
“The sign industry remains our bread and butter, but over time we’ve gradually expanded our capabilities into other product lines that include custom lighting and architectural elements,” Anderkin said. “Configuring an assembly process that allows for mass production of thousands of the same item after a history of custom sign fabrication has been different, but at the same time the crisis has inspired a newfound ingenuity and flexibility in our team. This newfound commitment combined with the fact that we already had the infrastructure in place, thanks to a broad custom fabrication model, has made for a mostly seamless transition.”
As the supply of plastics has become strained from the challenges of producing PPE in short order, Anderkin noted that there has been cooperation between competing vendors to make sure their manufacturing can continue without interruption. Anderkin closed the conversation by recognizing our society’s heroes, the healthcare workers and first responders who are facing profound challenges and risks to their own health to fight for the well-being of their patients.