Venerable printer attracts outside interest

Jo Francis is intrigued by the fresh investors buying into print.

What an interesting week this has been. Fresh, external investors buying into print, and into web offset no less – fascinating!

The sale of the venerable Ancient House Press, now Ancient House Printing Group, is definitely one to watch.

The duo behind the purchaser, the ambitious and acquisitive RDCP Group, seem to have a solid track record and to have their heads screwed on, which dare I say it makes a refreshing change from some of the assorted fantasists and asset strippers that have previously arrived in the industry touting a grand acquisition plan.

I spent some time reading up on RDCP’s previous buys and acquisition criteria, and while I may not agree that web offset printing can be viewed as having a “defendable, moat-like business model”, it is true to say that Ancient House has an offering beyond commodity magazine sections and from what I hear its customers like dealing with the business.

Hopefully this takeover is good news and a welcome boost for the industry’s profile in the financial world.

I wish RDCP, and the Ancient House team well and look forward to hearing more about their plans, and especially whether that could involve further printing industry buys.