The Lincoln-based print and design business, which began as a print management company but moved into production last year after buying a range of digital print and finishing kit, has bought the Derby-based digital print shop after its owner decided to retire.
Visual Print & Design managing director Graham Huntstone will head up Go Digital from this week while former Go Digital owner Peter Mosley will help with the business transition over the next three months before retiring.
Go Digital, which provides print and finishing services to local businesses, students and charities was considering closure if a buyer for the business could not be found.
Mosley said: “It has been an incredible journey over the last 24 years but at 67 I felt it was the right time to pass this on. We had a few offers on the table but Graham’s knowledge, experience and passion for the industry meant that not only would the business continue but also grow in the direction it deserves.”
Huntstone will now oversee both businesses, with the help of operations director James Heywood, who will take a more instrumental role in the day-to-day running of Visual Print & Design while Huntstone increases his focus on Go Digital.
Huntstone is planning to create new jobs at Go Digital, hire an apprentice and introduce new services to the company’s portfolio. He is aiming to invest in new wide-format machinery and a new MIS and is anticipating increasing the firm’s current £120,000 turnover by at least 50% in the first year.
All three of Go Digital’s staff have been kept on and the firm will remain at its existing Derby premises. The brand name will be retained and the company has launched a new website and social media marketing this week.
“We’ve rebranded the company as it’s 20 years old and set in its ways and it hasn’t done any marketing in 20 years. A little bit of fresh input from myself should hopefully go a long way,” said Huntstone.
“Visual Print & Design went from no staff to nine staff and from no sales to £750,000 turnover in six years so it’s been pretty good progression and I’m looking to do the same with Go Digital.”
Go Digital operates two Konica Minolta digital presses and HP large-format machinery as well as cutting, folding, creasing and foiling kit. Huntstone said the two businesses will be able to take advantage of each other's services and capabilities to offer clients additional services.
“We’ve now got access to wide-format machinery - we would normally outsource work like that - as well as access to foiling and some finishing elements that we don’t have here at Visual Print & Design,” said Huntstone.
“I am really excited to lead Go Digital and I have some really ambitious plans to develop the business into the kind of print and digital business that serves the growing wants and needs of companies in Derby and the surrounding areas.
“We want to work within Derby to help create jobs and contribute to economic growth of the city. As one of the only surviving print shops left in the city we want to make sure that the legacy of good local print and high customer service continues.”