BGF backs largest supplier of print to the UK retail sector with £10 million

York Mailing Limited isthe UK market leader in the specialist production of retail flyers, media inserts and quality catalogues.

Thegroup comprises of two web offset printing companies:York Mailing Limited, which specialises in the production of retail flyers and media inserts; and Pindar Scarborough Limited, which specialises in the production of high quality catalogues, principally for the online retail market. York Mailing’s customers include some of the UK’s largest and best-known supermarket and retail brands including Marks & Spencer, Tesco, Lidl, Iceland, The White Company, Cotton Traders and Boden. York Mailing generated turnover of £75m and profit of £7.6m in the year ended May 2013.

BGF invested £10m of growth capital in the company andtooka minority stake. BGF’s investment, together with additional funds from asset based lending and existing cash facilities, will enable York Mailing to fund the process of investing in new state of the art printing presses, which will provide significant additional volume capacity and efficiency improvements. The funding from BGF will also provide the financial means for opportunistic acquisitions and investments in the future.

Based in Elvington near York, York Mailing was founded by Chris Ingram in 1999. It is managed by Chris Ingram, CEO, and Mike Newbould, COO. They have since grown the business organically and through the acquisition of niche print specialists, including Pindar Limited in 2011, to become the largest supplier of print to the UK retail sector. The business has also won a number of accolades including being ranked as one of the UK’s private companies with the fastest growing international sales in the Sunday Times Virgin International Track 200 in 2013; and named as Printing Company of the Year by Print Week in 2008.

Despite the challenges of the market with books, magazines, newspapers and advertising moving online, the retail flyer and brochure markets, in which York Mailing has developed a leading position, are performing strongly. This is driven by supermarkets using flyers and media inserts as part of their marketing strategies and retailers using high quality brochures as a key conduit to drive online traffic.

Richard Taylor, BGF, commented:

“I think that many people would look at the physical printing business with some trepidation given how much of the market is moving online. What impressed us with Chris, Mike and the wider team at York Mailing was their ability to build a profitable and growing company by targeting a niche area within the sector that is in demand and expanding rapidly. Consistently investing in the latest innovative printing technology and acquiring underperforming assets and turning them round has enabled the management team to secure a market leading position. It’s a great example of a proven and dynamic management team with a clear plan to grow their business.

“You really only have to look at York Mailing’s excellent and long-standing client base to gain an understanding of company’s capability in delivering high quality printing campaigns and we look forward to supporting the company in these exciting times of growth and expansion.”

Richard added:

“With our recently established office in Leeds, we now have an even stronger local presence in Yorkshire and the North East; and York Mailing is the seventh investment that BGF has made in the North of England over the past sixteen months. We urge businesses to come and talk to us and see how our approach to partnership investing might also help them.”

Chris Ingram, Chief Executive Officer of York Mailing, commented:

“Since 1999 we have grown our business organically and through strategic acquisitions. Our investment in the new printing presses will add significant technological capabilities to the group and will mean that we are able to offer new and existing clients an unrivalled offering in the promotional printing market.

“Any expansion programme requires a level of financial flexibility and we needed an additional partner who could support us in this effort by providing not only the requisite growth capital, but who would work alongside us as a partner over the long term. BGF offered us this relationship and we look forward to working with them in the future.”