York Mailing acquires print communication firm TLG in Business Growth Fund-backed deal

Deal will see UK market leader in retail flyers add Leeds-based TLG’s print facilities to fast-growing hybrid offering

Specialist direct mail and print marketing firm York Mailing today announced the acquisition of veteran print communication company The Lettershop Group (TLG), in a deal backed by Business Growth Fund investment.

Founded in 1886 in Leeds, The Lettershop Group offers a range of print-based marketing services in the direct mail and retail marketing services sector. Its customers include Marks & Spencer, Sky and Tesco and it generated £20m over the 2013 financial year.

The acquisition, for an undisclosed sum, will add TLG’s print technology and team to create a hybrid digital and print marketing platform; York Mailing claims this enlarged group will employ 500 staff and reach a turnover of almost £100m.

Founded in 1999 by Chris Ingram, York Mailing has since grown through the strategic acquisition of niche print specialists to become the UK’s leading supplier of retail flyers, media inserts and catalogues to the UK retail industry.

Based in Elvington, the company now counts a number of high-profile retail customers including Tesco, Marks & Spencer, The White Company and Lidl.

The TLG purchase was made possible following July’s £10m investment in York Mailing from the Business Growth Fund (BGF), a privately-run £2.5bn investment fund backed by five of the UK’s main banking groups.

BGF’s backing will be used to fund further acquisitions in the sector as well as the purchase of new printing presses to increase York Mailing’s output capacity further.

Chris Ingram, chief executive of York Mailing, commented: “We have long admired TLG as a business given its outstanding client base and hybrid digital and web offset printing capabilities. It is a natural fit within the York Mailing business and we look forward to being able to offer customers an enhanced range of promotional printing services.

“This type of deal was a significant undertaking for us a management team and the financial backing and operational support provided by BGF has been invaluable.”

John Hornby, former owner of TLG, added: “I am delighted that the York Mailing Group of companies has acquired The Lettershop Group and along with Simon and David, I think this is the perfect home for The Lettershop business.

“I firmly believe that being part of the UK’s most dynamic print provider offers a real opportunity for TLG to extend their leading technology to a broader customer base.”

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