Former Garnett Dickinson digital wing rebrands, relocates and invests

Richard Stuart-Turner
Friday, January 8, 2016

Print and marketing company Rethink CMYK - Garnett Dickinson’s former digital operation GD Digital – is aiming for a 30% 12-month trade boost following a £500,000-plus investment.

The company, which now specialises in data capture, digital marketing, creative design and variable digital printing, was bought last April via an MBO led by former Garnett Dickinson chief executive Joel Dickinson and his wife Amanda. The rest of his family's web offset business was bought by Wagner Investments.

“The group was looking for buyers for its various businesses. Commercial web offset is a decimated marketplace but Amanda and I had an avid interest in the digital division, something that I set up myself some years ago,” said Dickinson.

“My ambition was to take that business and drive, build and grow the variable digital print aspects but that it would be underpinned with a proper cross-media proposition.”

Last month the company bought Xerox’s XMPie personalisation software, which Dickinson said would enable the firm to create an integrated cross-media marketing platform for the delivery of complex marketing campaigns across both printed and digital media.

“The cross-media marketing industry has transformed in recent years with huge advances in digital technology and a far greater understanding of how this can be best used with a mind to rewarding the consumer,” said Dickinson.

“We’d like to be the proverbial one-stop shop, and with cross-media we have to be really responsive and reactive. We’re delivering variable print as part of in-store loyalties and promotions for retailers. It’s a fantastic opportunity for us to drive the destiny of our manufacturing division.”

The firm, which has a turnover of around £1.7m, was initially called Print Your following the MBO and remained based at Garnett Dickinson’s premises for around six months.

It was renamed Rethink CMYK in October and then moved into new 929sqm leased premises seven miles away, near Hoyland in Barnsley.

“It all happened so fast so when we bought the assets of Garnett Dickinson's digital business we called it Print Your because that was an existing entity that we had, which we could jump onto very quickly, and we needed to do that,” said Dickinson.

“We needed and wanted to wait until we’d made the move to the new premises to then brand the business relevant to what it’s doing and where it’s going.

“Rethink CMYK represents not only about rethinking what we’ve had to do, but it’s about what we’re asking our customers to do day in, day out and what they’re asking their customers to do.”

Dickinson said the company’s new location, which is close to junction 36 of the M1, puts it in easy reach of its suppliers and is a good location for its customers.

“It’s a bigger and much taller unit, which gives us greater scope going forwards, and the press enclosure itself is absolutely state-of-the-art,” he said.

The firm has invested £510,000 in its new workspace, IT infrastructure, new machinery including an HP Indigo 7800, which has joined an existing Xerox iGen 4, and a purpose-built and climate-controlled press room.

“Generally digital printers plump for one or the other but we’ve found that HP and Xerox both have their USPs and we can offer the customer more by having both the digital platforms here,” said Dickinson.

All 14 of the firm’s existing staff moved across to the new site, while one more has joined recently, and the business plans to create six more new jobs this year. It has already started a recruitment drive to fill new posts in marketing, software development and accountancy.

Rethink CMYK handles jobs ranging in size from a set of business cards for small local businesses to thousands of full-colour brochures for large national retailers.

The company’s expansion has been backed by grant funding from the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (The LEP), secured with the help of Enterprising Barnsley, the business development arm of Barnsley Council, which is also assisting with the company’s recruitment.

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