The GCA is the trade body representing the entire UK greeting card industry. Its remit is to protect, promote and celebrate the publishing, retailing sending of greeting cards.
An independent not for profit organisation, the GCA has been the voice of the greeting card industry since 1919 and today has over 450 member companies, large and small.
The GCA membership comprises greeting card publisher members as well as a growing number of associate members with an interest in the greeting card industry, such as retailers, specialist suppliers, trade fair organisers and agents.
The GCA is owned totally by its members and associate members, headed up by its CEO, Amanda Fergusson. The GCA is governed by a Council of elected members.
Though totally separate, the GCA has been run from Max Publishing’s offices (home to Progressive Greetings and PG Buzz.net) for almost 20 years, a symbiotic relationship that works incredibly well.
The GCA works with great gusto on behalf of the entire greeting card industry, representing the sector in the media and to outside bodies such as the government, Royal Mail and within educational circles.
The GCA website is a wonderful source of information, much of which is freely available to all parties while a members’ area opens up even more resources, such as the UK Greeting Card Market Report which tracks the size and shape of the industry.
In addition to a programme of specialist seminars and a jam-packed AGM Conference, the GCA organises two significant annual card sending events on behalf of the industry, Thinking of You Week and Festive Friday.
Launched in 2014, Thinking of You Week takes place during the last week in September. This all encompassing card-sending occasion is designed to harness the emotional power of cards to create a wave of love, caring and happiness around the world, by encouraging everyone to send a card a day to different people during the week.
This occasion now has its own dedicated website.
Launched in 2013, Festive Friday was conceived to kickstart Christmas card sending. The event falls on the last Friday in November, marketed as the day when people should write their personal Christmas cards to friends and family – thereby launching the festive sending season with bang.
The GCA is also very active in promoting card sending to the next generation by providing popular free schools resources through the Resources section of its website, as well via the Times Education Supplement and Guardian websites.
Progressive Greetings Worldwide is the official magazine of the GCA.