Former DST Output boss Nick Dixon, the man who has struck more deals than the Wolf of Wall Street, has marked his return to the direct marketing industry by launching a new acquisition-focused venture, Veriteva.
Joining forces once more with his former business partner Rick Taylor, Dixon – affectionately known as “tricky Dicky” in the industry – has set up Veriteva as an investment and advisory business focusing on the marketing and graphic communications sectors.
Dixon has worked in the DM industry for over 30 years, and although his background is in print and print management, he also has experience of a range of different businesses involved in database marketing, insight and analytics, online marketing, and creative services.
Taylor and Dixon first started working together in 1992, along with three other investors, on the acquisition of the main assets of Colorgraphic, which had fallen into administration.
The team restructured the business and returned it to profitability within eight months. They subsequently led an MBO, with private equity funding, and continued to build the business culminating in the sale to Big Flower Inc in 2000.
They next worked together in 2004, when they acquired the trade and assets of Howitt, which had fallen into administration. They returned the business to profit after six months and then grew the business, via organic growth and acquisition, into a marketing services and graphic communication group which became Lateral Group in 2008.
After further organic growth taking the company to £52m revenue, the group was acquired by DST Systems Inc in 2011. They both remained with the business to assist in the integration of the group into DST’s other UK businesses, with Dixon finally stepping down in 2012.
The print operations were subsequently rebranded DST Output in line with its US parent group. The data side of the business was rebranded Global Insight Group (the GIG at DST) and has been building a full-service agency offering, picking up both Hyundai and Wyevale Garden Centres in recent weeks.
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