Manchester's G&H seeks buyer

Jo Francis
Friday, August 3, 2018

G&H has sought protection from its creditors as it searches for a buyer to take over the business after suffering a six-figure bad debt.

The Manchester sheetfed and web printer has filed a notice of intention to appoint administrators, but is not currently in administration. The business is close to 50 years old, having been established in 1969.

In a statement managing director Dave Hatton told PrintWeek that the firm had been hit with a large bad debt earlier this year.

He said: “That combined with the paper and insurance companies who now appear to be running the printing industry putting the squeeze on credit limits. We felt that we had no alternative but to file a notice of intention to provide protection whilst we seek a buyer for the business.

“I can confirm that the business is not in administration and we are continuing to operate during this time.”

G&H operates from two sites in Manchester.

Four years ago the firm embarked on a major investment programme when it returned to web offset printing with the installation of a Goss M600 16pp web in a hybrid configuration with Kodak S20 inkjet printheads for full-colour inkjet printing.

The firm followed that with a five-colour Speedmaster CX102 with coater. It also has digital printing kit including an HP Indigo 7600.

The hybrid M600 has been used to produce versioned retail flyers for retail customers including major client Nisa. G&H has also developed a special system, Pinpoint, that allows customers to manage print and distribution to individual stores, together with associated invoicing.

Other G&H clients include Lakeland, Regatta, and Manchester United and Manchester City football clubs.

G&H Print Services had sales of £11.9m and employed 71 staff in its most recent accounts for the year to 30 June 2017. It made an operating profit of almost £1.5m on continuing operations, but filed an operating loss of £1.28m on discontinued operations. Pre-tax profits were £57,106. In the prior year the business posted a bottom line loss of £791,899.

The directors subsequently loaned the company £750,000 from their pension scheme.

The business began life as a repro company and co-founder Earl Hawley is still the majority shareholder in the business. 

According to Companies House Hatton resigned as a director of the company in May.

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