Leach acquired by French group Chargeurs

Richard Stuart-Turner
Friday, April 6, 2018

France-based global manufacturing and services group Chargeurs has acquired large-format graphics specialist Leach, for an undisclosed sum.

Bradley, West Yorkshire-based Leach predominantly serves clients in the retail and exhibitions sectors as well as museums.

Chargeurs head of financial communications Pauline Bayec said the acquisition will benefit the group’s technical substrates division.

“Thanks to Leach, Chargeurs Technical Substrates will benefit from outstanding service solutions enhancing the value proposal to clients, from unique industrial offer to comprehensive service solutions, from production to installation,” she said.

“Meanwhile, Chargeurs Technical Substrates will also strengthen its strategic relations and partnership with distributors, partners and key worldwide players in the digital printing market.”

Chargeurs employs nearly 1,600 staff based in 34 countries on five continents and serves customers in more than 80 countries. Its 2017 turnover was €533m (£466m).

Leach brings over 100 staff and a turnover of more than £10m to the Chargeurs group. The firm, which took on new senior staff and formed its own innovation department last year, serves clients including retailers Gap and Topshop as well as the National Army Museum, the US Embassy in London and the Bahrain National Charter Monument.

In 2016 the firm celebrated its 125th anniversary and secured its most lucrative contract to date – a £2.5m assignment to produce a new visitor experience for the National Museum of Kuwait.

Leach’s current team will remain in place and the company will continue to be overseen by chief executive Richard Leach.

“Leach management is one of the decisive advantages that lead Chargeurs to invest in this company. Leach shareholders are committed to ensure a good transition as long as it will be necessary,” said Bayec.

“Chargeurs will have the opportunity to appoint two new directors to the board – without any operational mission – and really wishes to fall within Leach's DNA and corporate culture.

“Leach has a leading position in the UK with a well-known brand on which Chargeurs intends to build on.”

Chargeurs said its global network and financial power will support Leach’s technical innovation and commercial development “to successfully conquer new markets”, acting as a catalyst for its international development.

“With the acquisition of a major player and market leader that shares a similar long-term, international vision to our own, we are moving up the technical substrates value chain at an ever-faster pace. We are delighted to combine our teams to accompany Leach in this change in scale,” said Chargeurs chairman and chief executive Michaël Fribourg.

Richard Leach added: “I am excited by this development opportunity for Leach, which will benefit from Chargeurs’ international sales platform and prestigious client base. It is a unique opportunity for increased, profitable growth and to become the world leader in this dynamic niche market.

“The fact that Leach shares the same values as Chargeurs will allow for the seamless integration of our teams, and a higher quality of service for our clients.”

Chargeurs said the acquisition will be completed during Q2.

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