St Ives offloads print firms to start-up in £6m sell-off

matt armitageSt Ives has sold a major part of its print business in a £6m deal as part of a strategy to move away from what it calls “marketing activation” to focus on strategic services through the likes of Amaze, Occam and Branded3.
SP Group in Redditch, Service Graphics in Chessington, and field marketing firms Tactical Solutions and Flare have been bought by a little-known start-up company called SelmerBridge.
St Ives Management Services (SIMS), which has sales of around £47m, is not part of the deal.
SelmerBridge was originally launched in April 2017 as Ayesland-Aylesforf International, but has since changed its name twice, first to Aylesland Group in January and then SelmerBridge last month. Its sole director is named as Kouadjo Landry Kouakou, a French national.
Last year, St Ives Group admitted it was reviewing “strategic options” for both the marketing activation and books division following what it described as “very challenging” results.
The division lost £4.4m in its 2017 financial year on revenues of £106.3m. It provides point of sale, large format printing services, field sales and marketing services to a largely UK customer base.
St Ives chief executive Matt Armitage: “Having taken considerable action over the past year to stabilise the performance of the division, we are pleased to complete the sale as part of a planned disposal process.
“The sale is in line with the board’s stated strategy of focusing on the group’s core businesses, in particular those within its higher growth, higher margin strategic marketing segment.”

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