Review of 2018: January

All the biggest stories from the past 12 months.

A number of retailers and restaurant chains unveiled plans to reduce or abolish their use of plastic packaging after the government said that it wanted to eliminate all of the UK’s avoidable plastic waste by 2042... A 16-year-old running his own printing business has sights on going national now he has left college to work full-time at his company Flash Design... It was feared that printing industry firms would be among thousands of suppliers counting the cost after the dramatic collapse of construction and outsourcing giant Carillion... Global paper manufacturer Mondi Group revealed it was to acquire Finland-headquartered containerboard manufacturer Powerflute from Nordic Packaging and Container Holdings in a deal worth £326m... Shares in Communisis hit a near four-year high after the PLC gave an upbeat trading update for its full year... David Laybourne stepped down as managing director of Real Digital International as the business sought further growth beyond its core markets. Production director Barry Stephens stepped up to the managing director role... Signs Express marked the end of its 25th year in franchising with a management buyout intended to further drive the growth of the business... Hague acquired the print management division of Contrac to extend its operation in East Yorkshire... Edward Wheeler, joint managing director of packaging firm Marpak, passed away unexpectedly on New Year’s Eve at the age of 53... Stones Ashford had an estimated deficiency of £4.2m when it was shut down, with the firm’s 120 former employees collectively owed more than £1.6m... Print and marketing communications company Taylor Bloxham Group created a new division dedicated specifically to direct mail... Rapidity expanded onto a second site with the acquisition of litho and digital printer Lefa Print for an undisclosed sum... Cornwall-based book printer TJ International was bought in a management buyout led by Andy Watts... Plastic Card Services celebrated the end of a “phenomenal year” which culminated in it being branded as ‘one to watch’ in The European Business Awards by sponsor tax consultancy firm RSM... The Guardian launched its new tabloid format on 15 January, following the publication of its final edition in the mid-size Berliner format... The Federation of Small Businesses called on the government to crack down on the late payment culture. National chairman Mike Cherry said that 5.7 million SMEs and self-employed individuals are affected by this issue in the UK... Anthony Thirlby was promoted to a new role at Heidelberg, global senior vice-president, commercial segment, and head of subscription sales, as the manufacturer looked to implement new business models... FT Solutions was bought by Paragon Customer Communications in a pre-pack administration deal. Following the appointment of Armstrong Watson as administrator on 17 January, Paragon bought three of FTs sites the same day: Burnham, Hertford and Wolverhampton. It also took on 80 staff... Robert Whiteside, chairman of both Adare businesses, stepped down.Whiteside became chairman last year after the group was split into £170m BPO operation Adare International and £75m Adare SEC...

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