St Ives acquires minority stake in Evolved e-book business
By Simon Nias Thursday, 24 November 2011
St Ives has continued its spending spree with the purchase of a £1.5m, 15.75% stake in Evolved Group, a developer of e-book conversion software for the publishing industry.
Evolved, which trades as Easypress Technologies, develops cross-media publishing software that enables users to create, manage and publish content in multiple media. A particular focus of its proprietary technology is the conversion of content into eBook and tablet formats.
The Guildford-based business, which was established in 1998, employs 11 staff and has a strong client base within the publishing community.
Following the share purchase, St Ives has been granted right of first refusal in the event of the sale of all or part of the remaining equity in the business by the current shareholders, which include the co-founders and a number of private individuals.
The investment, St Ives' fourth this year, marks a continuation of St Ives' evolution into a provider of value-added publishing and marketing services that include print, while reducing its exposure to commoditised print markets.
It also marks an expansion on St Ives' existing e-book conversion service, offered through its partnership with the north London headquartered pre-media group FMG, which was signed in January 2010.
Patrick Martell, chief executive of St Ives, told PrintWeek: "FMG do our colour repro and conversion of backlist titles, whereas Evolved provide software solutions/systems to produce/convert files for e-books. [These are] two very different services and we will use both."
St Ives said that the two companies would work closely with one another within the UK, but that Evolved would continue to be run by its existing management team from its current premises.
St Ives’ £50m-plus 2011 spending spree
Nov 2011 Acquires 15.75% stake in Evolved for £1.5m
Sep 2011 Acquires Pragma in deal worth up to £6m
Sep 2011 Acquires Response One in deal worth up to £19m
Feb 2011 Acquires Tactical Solutions in deal worth up to £24m
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