Luxe paper bags take off for IG Design Group

Jo Francis
Wednesday, June 13, 2018

IG Design Group’s UK business has increased sales and profits following an organisational revamp and a move into the production of high-end paper bags for retailers.

The group reorganised its three UK operations under a single leadership team in order to better leverage the know-how in the business. It also invested in additional specialist equipment in order to move into the new business area of luxe paper carrier bags, which went live last September.

Chief executive Paul Fineman said that sales at its UK wing had increased by 5%, while profits were up 6%.

Overall group sales were up 5% to £327.5m, while underlying operating profit jumped by 30% to £22.8m.

The group has operations in the UK and Asia (38% of sales), the Americas (37%), continental Europe (16%), and Australia (11%).

Its product range includes cards, giftwrap, partyware, calendars, gift bags and stationery.

In the UK, the move into the adjacent market of ‘not-for-resale’ bags used by retailers has seen the firm secure a number of new clients including Kurt Geiger, Schuh and Joules.

Fineman said that, overall, the business “had considerable scope for future growth with existing and new clients”.

It completed the acquisition of the trade and certain assets of Australian card company Biscay Greetings in January and is on track to integrate the business by the end of the summer.

Fineman said further buys were likely if potential deals presented an opportunity to consolidate existing categories, or grow into new complementary areas.

“We seek compelling M&A opportunities but will be very discerning,” he said.

The firm’s shares were at 436p prior to the results announcement, and have since risen to 473p (52-week high: 477.5p low: 323.5p).


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