LONDON - Walstead Group has secured a £33.0 million investment from London private equity house Rutland Partners to support its acquisition of Austria’s biggest printing group, LEYKAM Let’s Print. The transaction has an overall enterprise value of €175 million.
Walstead, with revenues of EUR €265 million and 1,300 employees, is a leading commercial printing group with operations in the UK and Spain. Walstead operates under the Wyndeham brand in the UK, and Rotocobrhi and Eurohueco in Spain.
LEYKAM Let’s Print has revenues of €225 million and a workforce of 730, serving Central and Eastern Europe. The business operates from two locations in Austria, and one each in Slovenia and Czech Republic. Around 70 per cent of its sales come from promotional flyers for retail and commercial customers in Austria, Germany, Czech Republic and Switzerland.
The combined Walstead and LEYKAM Let’s Print group will have pro-forma annual revenues of €490 million and employ over 2,000 staff at 11 production facilities in five countries. Walstead will operate 37 web offset and four gravure printing presses supported by 38 perfect binding and stitching lines which together will process over 565,000 tonnes of paper annually and specialise in the production of promotional flyers and leaflets, catalogues, magazines and newspaper supplements. Mark Scanlon and Paul Utting will continue to lead the enlarged Walstead Group as chairman and CEO, respectively.
Completion is subject to Austrian and German merger control approval which is expected to take four weeks.
Mark Scanlon, chairman of Walstead, said: “LEYKAM Let’s Print is an exceptionally well-managed, profitable and successful business which has recently received high levels of investment. It will act as our hub for expansion into Central and Eastern Europe. This was a complex transaction, and we chose Rutland because of their experience of these situations and their strong appetite to back the Walstead business. We also see plenty of further potential opportunities to progress our strategy in Europe, and I do not believe any other European print group has the ambition or ability to do what we are doing.”
Oliver Jones, partner at Rutland, said: “We are delighted to support Walstead with this transformational deal. Building on their strong track record, the enlarged group will have the scale and geographic reach to deliver increased pan-European sales and improved operational efficiency. We look forward to working with the Walstead team to maximise the potential of the enlarged group and to support their plans for further growth.”