Gemini buys Foundry Press from administrators

By Richard Stuart-Turner, Monday 17 June 2019

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Gemini Print Group has acquired Foundry Press out of administration in a pre-pack deal.

cropper

Cropper: "Foundry Press are a commercial jobbing printer with a very good client base"

Ian Vickers and Chris Stevens of FRP Advisory were appointed joint administrators of Horsham, West Sussex-based Foundry on 21 May by the company’s directors.

The administrators told PrintWeek the 21-staff firm “had suffered cashflow pressures following a period of challenging trading conditions”.

Shoreham, West Sussex-based Gemini Print Group, bought Foundry’s business and assets from the administrators via a pre-pack sale, with all of Foundry's staff TUPE’d over to Gemini.

Foundry’s previous owners, Bruce Phillips and Alan Houliston, are “still within the business for a period of time”, according to Gemini group managing director Steve Cropper.

He told PrintWeek: “Foundry were marketing their company prior to going into administration and we were already looking at it at that point.

“We were trying to do a deal to purchase the company [before it went into administration] but time ran out for Foundry.

“They carried on running when they went into administration and even though we didn’t know whether we were actually going to be successful in the pre-pack purchase, we funded the company during that situation of uncertainty.”

He added: “They are a commercial jobbing printer with a very good client base and good staff that will complement Gemini’s staff.

“When we were doing negotiations, its two owners Bruce and Alan were more interested in making sure that all of the staff had a position within Gemini going forwards, regardless of whether we kept it in Horsham or moved it to Shoreham.”

Foundry’s staff will be relocated to Gemini’s Shoreham base in the next few months, once the license that Gemini obtained from the administrators on Foundry’s current leased premises comes to an end.

With the addition of Foundry’s staff, Gemini will now employ around 185 people across the group. 30 of its existing staff work at Gemini’s Bristol operation, with the remainder based at Shoreham.

Cropper said Gemini’s current group run rate prior to the acquisition was £20m and that Foundry, which operates Heidelberg and HP machinery, had been turning over £2.5m.

Joint administrator Vickers added: “This deal delivers the best result for all stakeholders, and most importantly saves jobs in the local area as well as ensuring continuity of trade for customers. We wish the team at Gemini Print all the success for the future.”

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