SOS expands portfolio with Prepress deal

Darryl Danielli
Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Service Offset Supplies (SOS) has acquired CTP kit reseller and support specialist Prepress Services (PPS) to expand its product and service offering.

Pictured L-R: Sheridan, SOS service manager Richard Quinell, Hamilton, Milfull, and Binnie
Pictured L-R: Sheridan, SOS service manager Richard Quinell, Hamilton, Milfull, and Binnie

The deal adds the Lüscher range of VLF conventional and flexo and specialist CTP engines to SOS’s portfolio, joining platesetters from the likes of Cron, which it took on exclusively from Apex Digital Graphics in 2018, and Screen.

The transfer of sales and support of PPS-supplied Lüscher machines and service contracts to SOS goes live on 1 April.

"We are pleased that SOS is taking over the operations from Prepress Services, which will secure a safe continuation of Lüscher service in the UK," said Lüscher vice president sales Stefan Thulin.

The acquisition has been under discussion since just before Christmas and came about as a result of two of PPS’s three directors looking to retire.
While Bill Hamilton and Ralph Sheridan have retired as a result of the deal, SOS sales director Mike Milfull said their fellow director David Binnie will join SOS to ensure a smooth transition.

No other staff transferred as the three directors were the only PPS employees

“We’re pleased that David is staying to help train and certify our engineers, the first of which should be certified next week,” said Milfull.

“He’ll make sure that everything runs smoothly and when the time feels right for him in two or three years perhaps he will retire I guess.”

SOS will also keep on PPS’s factory unit in Greet, near Winchcombe, Gloucestershire for spares and service, with a view to integrating the two facilities to centralise parts for certain products at either Greet or SOS’s main site in Loughton, Essex to streamline supply.

However, over the coming months it will retire the PPS brand name.

As well as CTP kit, SOS also supplies workflow and colour management software, blankets, inks, plates and chemicals and has reseller deals in place for Epson, Fujifilm, Roland DG and Yotta wide-format printers. It’s also a reseller of Konica Minolta cutsheet printers.

“I think we’ve quite an impressive portfolio of products to offer people now and importantly, the specialists to help sell and support them,” said Milfull.

“People have been banging on about one-stop shops for a long time, but I think we’re as near as dammit there.”

Milfull added that while the past 12 months had been challenging, and the industry would likely look different from when the country entered the pandemic by the time it exits, anecdotally customers were starting to get busier.

“And whatever happens, we’re ready now, we’re ready to fly out the traps when things get back to normal,” he added.

“In some senses we’ve perhaps never been busier in terms of selling equipment than we have in the past six months, whether it’s wide-format or CTP, people have been busy positioning themselves for when lockdown finishes.”

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