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Can gov’t plan turn the tide for SMEs?

A new support package for the UK’s exporting SMEs could assist UK print’s global standing

Former franchisees rebuild family ties after independence

Kall Kwik and Prontaprint used to be two of the biggest names in the UK high-street print market. At their peak, the two businesses ran a combined total of around 550 outlets in towns up and down the UK.

Print may be a strong player but throughput could be better

On the face of it, current labour productivity levels in the UK are pretty dire to say the least. Last month’s Office of National Statistics (ONS) figures show that hourly output fell 0.5% in Q1 of this year, pushing productivity below levels recorded before the financial crash.

Post-Paperlinx advice for cash-strapped print companies

It’s a situation that is polarising industry opinion. Three months on from the administration of most of Paperlinx UK, we’re now at the stage where print companies that had 90 days’ credit with the merchant are being expected to cough up on their outstanding debts.

Statement improves business support but lacks real reform

Much like the curate’s egg, George Osborne’s final Autumn Statement of this parliament contained good and bad news in fairly equal measure.

A very different industry has emerged from the downturn

It has been six years coming, but the UK economy has finally surpassed its pre-recession peak. That it is the last of the G8 to do so bar Italy, which is still 9% below its 2008 maximum and headed into its third recession, illustrates how protracted the recovery has been; nevertheless, for the past year our economic future has been looking progressively brighter.

Mergers and acquisitions return to pre-downturn levels

The past quarter brought such a flurry of global M&A activity that, with two weeks still to go, it had already reached a level not seen since 2007. In Europe, it was the busiest quarter for at least two years and that was reflected in print and packaging where there was a 300% hike in the number of reported deals versus Q1 and a 150% increase year-on-year.

Upbeat BPIF Outlook reflects spring thaw

Demand up, input costs under control, and fewer firms in severe financial distress; while not exactly in full bloom during this year’s early onset of spring, the printing industry showed overall signs of health in a period not normally known for its growth, the first quarter of the year.

Will NIC reforms live up to the hype?

The government says 1.25m businesses and charities will see their National Insurance contributions (NICs) cut by up to £2,000 each when the new Employment Allowance is introduced next year. Business leaders have welcomed this, but how does it all stack up for printers?

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