MBO at Plastic Card Services

Jo Francis
Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Co-founder Tim Holt has become the sole owner of Plastic Card Services (PCS) following an MBO at the Macclesfield firm.

Holt: new revenue streams are showing great promise
Holt: new revenue streams are showing great promise

Holt set the business up together with his colleague Rob Nicholls back in 1993, after the duo were made redundant from Datacard Corporation and decided to put their experience in the cards market into a new venture. 

Nicholls stepped back from his role as managing director just over three-and-a-half years ago, with Adam Unsworth taking over that position.

Nicholls has now decided to focus on other projects outside the industry, although he said that intended to stay in touch with the company. 

Holt told Printweek: “We are looking to the future with positivity. Rob is welcome anytime and no doubt we will still be seeking his advice.

“I believe we have a great team here at PCS and I am certainly looking forward to working with them as ever in developing the business.

“I’ve got massive faith in Adam and he’s a real asset to the company,” Holt added.

Nicholls said it had been a difficult decision to leave, but other challenges now beckoned. 

He said the team at PCS had been “the best colleagues one could ever hope for”.

“I leave with the comfort of being able to see the business grow and maintain its envied position, not just as an expert in card technologies but also highly respected within the business community. 

“I wish Tim and the team all the very best and shall of course keep in touch for drinks etc!” he quipped. 

Holt said that while the firm’s trade with clients in leisure and retail had been impacted by the pandemic restrictions, the business had used the downtime to revamp its processes. 

“We have digitised our operations from order to despatch, and we are embracing online with storefronts using our PCS hub, and that’s expanding quite nicely,” he explained. 

The firm is using Infigo technology for its web-to-print side, which Holt described as “a unique offering” for ordering plastic cards online.

The business is also working with two large technology providers to allow small customers, such as independent retailers, to easily make their own giftcards in low quantities from 50 upwards.

“This is showing great promise and is a different revenue stream for us,” Holt explained. 

Unsworth commented: “We are all sad to see Rob go, but having the continual backing from Tim is a real boost to us all and with a host of new developments on the horizon, we are definitely in for some exciting times!” 

The firm has litho and digital production capabilities, as well as personalisation, data processing, mailing and fulfilment. It can make up to 160m cards a year at its 2,800sqm facility, and manufactures cards that are fully recyclable or eco degradable. 

Sales are currently around £3m, and PCS has 34 staff.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed.  

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