Hollywood Monster eyes London acquisition

Hannah Jordan
Thursday, June 30, 2016

Birmingham-based POS specialist Hollywood Monster is looking to expand its operations with the opening of a London sales office and its first business acquisition.

“We’ve planned to do this for the last five or six years and we are now on track to do it,” said managing director Simon McKenzie.

“We’re looking for a smaller version of ourselves. The best fit would be someone that has a long-standing presence in the market in the London area, a decent facility and an established history with customers,” he added.

McKenzie said the ideal company would be turning over around £4-£5m, employ around 40 staff and have a facility around 2,500sqm to be able to meet its production needs.

“If the right opportunity came along we would be interested to start discussions now but realistically the plan at the moment would be to acquire something in around two years,” he said.

“Around 60% of our annual turnover comes from London so we need to recognise that, and also we won a five-year contract with Excel Group in London at the start of the year and logistically it can be challenging to manage the work on short turnaround.”

“An acquisition like this will help us expand and increase our sales business as well as meeting those needs,” he said.

As well as the Excel contract, which includes exterior graphics, Invision and perimeter signange for the Excel Centre, Hollywood Monster works with major retailers and groups including Westfield shopping centres.

Ahead of its acquisition plans the £8.3m-turnover business is set to open a new sales and marketing office in London in October this year, which will employ around four or five people. McKenzie said he was in the process of deciding between two potential sites.

The business has also just expanded headcount at its Birmingham base with the addition of a new sales customer relationship manager.

Hollywood Monster currently employs 77 people at its 2,700sqm facility in Birmingham and produces a range of signage, banners and wraps for clients from the retail, events, theatre, sport, and property sectors.

Mckenzie said prophecies of doom and gloom in the house building sector following last week’s Brexit decision, was not a currently a concern despite house builders being a key customer-base.

“Many more planning applications are getting passed and there is still a huge shortfall in housing in England,” he said. “We have £400,000 worth of signage for house builders to produce in the next eight weeks alone.”

"What drives us is what fits ours and our clients needs and trying to keep margins healthy, rather than just focussing on turnover and that works for us," said McKenzie.

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