Melbourne sign shop mum goes from homelessness to printing success

Melbourne sign shop mum goes from homelessness to printing success
The co-manager of a Melbourne sign shop said she rose above poverty and homelessness to achieve business success, winning clients like Coles Myer, appearing on The 7.30 Report and now investing in a new wide-format press.

Stacey Currie (pictured) from Melbourne-based Signs 'n Banners told ProPrint the company this week installed an Océ Arizona 350GT.

The Carrum Downs-based company already has the UV flatbed printer up and running and Currie reported they have run a few jobs through the machine already.

The 350GT joins two solvent-based Roland machines at the company, which is owned and operated by Currie and her partner, Dave.

The management team told ProPrint they will use the new printer mostly for point-of-sale applications. They added that they are looking to take advantage of its ability to print straight onto board, where previously they had been forced to print onto a vinyl substrate and mount the vinyl onto the board.

Currie pointed to the 350GT's white ink capability as one of the printer's key selling points, as well as its ability to boost the company's "efficiency".

The growth of Signs and Banners continues a remarkable journey for Stacey, who "turned her life around" after finding herself at the age of 21 with three kids, in an abusive relationship, and having grown up in a housing commission without a mother present.

Stacey said she briefly battled homelessness and had struggled to find a way to get her life on track.

"I didn't know a healthy way of living," she admitted.

Stacey initially embarked upon a career as a funeral director. Her start in the printing industry came after offering to take over the printing business operated by her partner, Dave.

"It was tiny, it was making about $100 a month," she said. "Dave was doing other work at the time, so I asked him: 'Can I run your business? Can I grow it?'"

Before long, she had won accounts among the likes of BHP Billiton, Coles Myer and Clive Peeters.

Stacey has also kick-started an initiative called 'Empowering Young Mums', which is aimed at giving other women in her situation further opportunities.

She now divides her time between the business and speaking engagements, as well as writing a book about her story, due for release in January. She was recently featured on The 7.30 Report and has been approached by Australian Women's Weekly and 60 Minutes.

"I didn't realise my story was so powerful until people started calling me," she said.

Click here to read Stacey's story in full.

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