Pureprint set for further growth with substantial BGF investment

Richard Stuart-Turner
Monday, January 5, 2015

Uckfield-based digital and litho printer Pureprint has received a £5.3m investment from Business Growth Fund (BGF).

The funding will support organic growth, further investment in new technology, including wide-format machinery, and provide the finance for future acquisitions.

BGF, the independent company established to help Britain's growing businesses, has taken a minority stake in Pureprint as a result of the deal, which was completed in the week before Christmas.

Chief executive Mark Handford and his sister HR director Bridget Massey will remain as majority shareholders following BGF’s investment.

Handford has appointed Andy Nash, who was introduced by BGF, as non-executive chairman. Nash, who has had an extensive career in FMCG marketing, is also chairman of Brand Addition and ICA Digital.

Jon Simon, senior investment manager at BGF, will join the board as non-executive director.

Pureprint director Richard Owers said: “There were various people approaching the company and expressions of interest in it, mainly from overseas.

“There has never been any intention to sell the business and there isn’t any intention to sell it at the moment but the idea was to grow the company to the next stage and everybody that we talked to said that we should speak to BGF.

“There's no difference in terms of running the business but BGF brings additional expertise in terms of management and experience. It specialises in growth and development and really supports companies like ours to carry on the good work we’re doing and provide some additional management expertise and input.”

To date, BGF has invested around £20m in the UK’s wider print services sector. Last month it was announced that Hobs Reprographics received a £7m BGF investment while BGF has also invested in York Mailing and Thames Card Technology.

Handford said: “As a family business, getting the right investor and partner to support our growth plans was critical. We are looking forward to working with Andy Nash and are very optimistic about our growth strategy.

“Our long-term goal is to build one of the UK’s leading multi-platform print and marketing solution based businesses, a journey we started several years ago and continue today.

“This is an exciting time for Pureprint. We remain focused on our customer offering and making sure that as a print partner we’re meeting and exceeding client expectations on quality and innovation.”

Pureprint has experienced rapid growth in recent years, with revenue growing from £17m in 2009 to over £40m in the financial year ending December 2014. The business currently employs 275 people and its clients include Mulberry, Jack Wills, Victoria Beckham, Rolls Royce, BP, Fairtrade Foundation and Oxfam.

Three HP Indigo 7800 presses will be installed at the firm’s 11,100sqm premises this month. They will join two HP Indigo 10000 B2 digital presses.


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