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The Daily Telegraph (Engineering)

1 September 2010
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Manchester Evening news

18 August 2010
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Business

Fab Lab's pop-up stadium solution

What would you send a diehard football fan as a birthday greeting? Why, a card that opened up to reveal a pop-up paper model of their team’s stadium, of course.

It seems like a good idea. And one Bolton-based manufacturer had come up with just such a design.

But you might be surprised at how many hurdles some of those same football clubs put in the way of allowing It’s Unique, the company concerned, to stock the cards in their own stadium shops.

According to managing director Mike Smith, four Premier League clubs he approached demanded five-figure annual “licence” fees for stocking the item, even though they all agreed it would sell well.

When he declined, he also later discovered that one had shown his idea to another manufacturer in the hope that they would be able to produce something similar.

Fortunately those good people at the Manchester Fab Lab proved to be much more forthcoming when Mr Smith approached them about finding a way to display the cards that wouldn’t damage them.

Up until then the only means of keeping the pop-up stadiums open to view was with a plastic stand that cost customers £2 – in addition to the £4.99 cost of the card.

These could also damage the card if they were posted in the same envelope.

Mr Smith had not managed to find anyone who could suggest a cheaper, less cumbersome alternative until the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce referred him to the Fab Lab, the Manufacturing Institute’s fabrication workshop that aims to help local business put their ideas into reality.

Within two hours it had come up with a laser-cut, pop-out stand that was much more environmentally friendly and only cost 2p to produce.

Mr Smith said it was “nothing short of ingenious"

http://menmedia.co.uk/manchestereveningnews/news/business/s/1314358_fab_labs_popup_stadium_solution

Bolton Evening news

6 August 2010
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Ingenious solution on the cards


A pop-up greetings card company teamed up with an ideas factory to help design a cost-effective card stand.

Bolton-based company It’s Unique, which makes football-themed pop-up cards, was having difficulty finding a way to keep the cards open to view in an aesthetic and cost-effective manner.

After two years, the solution was a plastic holder which cost £2 per pair. Not only was it expensive, but was liable to damage the card if sent through the post.

Fab Lab, the Manufacturing Institute’s hi-tech fabrication workshop, solved the problem in two hours with a simple laser-cut stand made from card, cutting costs by 98 per cent, which reduced the cost from £1 per stand to 2p.

It’s Unique managing director Mike Smith was referred to Fab Lab by the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce and after a consultation, the Fab Lab team came up with a cost-effective and enviromentally friendly design, which folds flat for inclusion with the card.

Mr Smith said: “When we developed our unique pop-up stadium cards we realised that to display the stadium in correct perspective, they needed to be propped open as one would a hinged box lid.

“Our existing plastic stand pairs, although suitable for the job, were costing £2, which although fine when used for retail display use, were too expensive for customers, taking into account the card retails for £4.99. They also have a relatively large carbon footprint and, most importantly, they can damage the greeting card when included with it in an envelope.

“I can only describe the environmentally friendly, laser-cut, pop-up card stand Fab Lab came up with, and at only 2 pence each, nothing short of ingenious.”

 

 

http://www.theboltonnews.co.uk/news/business/boltonbusiness/8318329.Ingenious_solution_on_the_cards/

Wigan Reporter

16 April 2010
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Published Date:
23 February 2010

By Natalie Walker

DW Stadium pops up in greeting cards

NEW DESIGN: Mike Smith, managing direcror of It’s Unique, with the pop-up models of the DW Stadium.

"Each stadium takes between four weeks and three months to design. It was extremely difficult to get the exact design but it was worth it. "

How do you fancy having your very own DW stadium?

Wigan sports fans now have the opportunity to own a small-scale version of the stadium thanks to greeting cards company It's Unique.

The company, based in Bolton, has designed two sets of greetings cards with a 3D model of the DW stadium for Wigan Athletic and Wigan Warriors fans.
Mike Smith, managing director, said: "When people open the card, a 3D stadium pops up.

"We have been working on this for two years and I set the company up 12 months ago.

"We wanted to create something that would have a resonance with people. There have been pianos and the Eiffel Tower, but no one has done a football stadium.

"Each stadium takes between four weeks and three months to design.
"It was extremely difficult to get the exact design but it was worth it.

"I am really impressed with the way they have turned out.
"Dave Whelan has seen the cards and he thinks they are great.

"These cards will make great gifts for special occasions such as birthdays and Christmas or simply as a unique collectors item.
The cards are available in both Latics and Warriors shops or online at www.itsunique.co.uk

Full story in today's (Tuesday) Wigan Evening Post...
 
The cards are available in both Latics and Warriors shops or online at www.itsunique.co.uk

http://www.wigantoday.net/wigannews/DW-Stadium-pops-up-in.6095794.jp#4976138

Hornsey and Crouch End Journal

15 April 2010
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It's Unique way to own White Hart Lane

 

HOME WIN . . . Tottenham fans now have the chance to own their very own mini version of White Hart Lane

 

 

 

nlnews@archant.co.uk
24 February 2010

TOTTENHAM fans harbourinng dreams of owning White Hart Lane now have the chance to do exactly that.

Lilywhites supporters can now buy their own version of the ground thanks to greetings card company It's Unique.

Each card contains a pop-up 3D stadium - the ideal gift for birthdays, christmas, or perhaps even to celebrate securing that elusive Champions League spot...

The company have produced cards for a host of Premier League clubs including Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea, and has more designs in the pipeline.

Managing director Mike Smith (pictured) said: "We have been working on this for two years and I set the company up 12 months ago.

"We wanted to create something that would have a resonance with people. There have been pianos and the Eiffel Tower, bit no-one has done a football stadium.

"Each stadium takes between four weeks and three months to design. It was extremely difficult to get the exact design but it was worth it.

"I am really impressed with the way they have worked out. These cards will make great gifts for special occasions such as birthdays and christmas or simply as simply as a unique collectors item."

Cards are available for purchase online at www.itsunique.co.uk or in club stores.

http://www.hornseyjournal.co.uk/content/haringey/hornseyjournal/sport/story.aspx?brand=HCEJOnline&category=sportfootball&tBrand=northlondon24&tCategory=sporthcej&itemid=WeED24%20Feb%202010%2015%3A40%3A18%3A793

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