George Rumball, 29, bought the Kall Kwik Bishopsgate branch on 1 February after more than six months of preparation. Prior to the sale, the site was being run as an unbranded stationery shop. Rumball has now restored the franchise branding and set out on an extensive investment programme.
Having worked in the print sector for more than a decade at companies include Océ, Inc Direct and Paragon, Rumball had long fostered ambitions to run his own business. He was drawn to Kall Kwik after a spell as an account manager in its St James branch.
“I have worked in print since leaving school and I liked the idea of working for myself in an industry that I love,” he said. “The City is a hive of activity and there is no other Kall Kwik branch within the Square Mile, so the location had huge appeal.
“When I came to consider the Bishopsgate branch, it was clear that I would be taking on a then-failing business that needed someone enthusiastic at its head to really sell it to clients. I knew what I needed to do.
“The move has been a complete shift; in Paragon I would not have batted an eyelid at an order for 100 books, but now I am running around after the work. I’ve taken on jobs from a variety of local businesses and I know people will buy their print from someone they like.”
He continued: “It is not always based on price and I have a burning passion for print so I hope that will help lead the branch on to bigger things.”
After spending a month redecorating his three-floor centre and refreshing the signage to sport the franchise branding, Rumball invested more than £10,000 in equipment, taking on a Canon ImagePrograf Pro-4000 printer, a Matrix laminator and a Morgana Docufold creaser/folder.
He is also leasing a Xerox Versant 180 and has linked up with a partner to address a high demand in the area for vinyl wall and floor graphics.
Rumball said his ambitions for the Kall Kwik City centre would be to fill his empty floorspace with equipment for vinyl applications and bookletmaking, while his long-term plan may include the acquisition of another Kall Kwik branch elsewhere in London.
Currently, Rumball heads up a team of three which also includes his father Simon Rumball as print manager and Jo Mooney-Clarke, who has worked at the branch since 2011, in charge of client services.
Having celebrated its 40th anniversary late last year, Kall Kwik currently has 43 branches and has been headed up since late 2011 by Nigel Toplis, its former boss who returned to acquire the brand in 2011.