All the biggest stories from the past 12 months.
SP Group ceased production and the majority of workers at the business were made redundant following the move into administration… A 42-year-old male reel store worker at Wyndeham Bicester died following an incident involving a roll clamp truck… Communisis posted sales up 9% for the half-year as well as an increase in underlying operating profits. However, Unite members at the company’s cheque base in Crewe voted in favour of strike action after rejecting an offer from the company to resolve a pay dispute… Printing of Hello! magazine has returned to the UK through a new deal inked with Liverpool gravure printer Prinovis… G&H sought protection from its creditors as it searched for a buyer to take over the business after suffering a six-figure bad debt. Later that month a number of employees were laid off at the sheetfed and digital operations of G&H Print Services, and the firm’s website was taken down… Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon visited Bell & Bain and met with apprentices at the Glasgow book printer… Print and marketing communications company Taylor Bloxham Group established a dedicated team to work with the education and membership sectors as part of its continued targeted growth…A new free newspaper for the Isle of Wight was launched. The first printed edition of the Isle of Wight Observer hit the streets on 10 August, around six months after its sister website was launched…Under pressure from looming debt repayments, Kodak put its fast-growing Flexographic Packaging Division up for sale… Burgo announced plans to convert one of its paper machines to container board, taking a further chunk of LWC paper capacity out of the European market… Royal Mail said it would appeal a £50m fine imposed by Ofcom for breach of competition law relating to price increases for customers on its Access Letters Contract for bulk mail… DS Smith pledged to manufacture 100% reusable or recyclable packaging by 2025… Manchester-based finishing specialist Alchemy Coatings went into administration. Sister company Silk Hat Greetings assumed the name to continue trading the business… HP Inc signed a £380m deal to acquire UK-based print outsourcing provider and kit reseller Apogee Corporation… Leeds-based Awesome Merchandise launched a £350,000 crowdfunding initiative to help accelerate its expansion plans in the US and Europe. It subsequently smasshed the target by more than £100,000 and set out plans for a new 186m2 facility in Austin, Texas… Manroland Web Systems and Goss International completed the merger of their printing press businesses… The flagship site of the former Robert Horne paper merchanting business has been demolished… Islington-headquartered independent media agency The Specialist Works was bought from founder Jim Lewcock in an MBO led by CEO Martin Woolley and COO Parry Jones… Photobox Group acquired Greetz, the Dutch greetings card and personalised gifts giant, which it expected to increase sales of greetings cards across the group to up to 25 million in 2018… ESP Colour acquired Totnes, Devon-based commercial printer Kingfisher Print & Design out of administration… Macfarlane Group spent £3.5m on two packaging distribution firms: Tyler Packaging on 31 July and Harrisons Packaging… German paper mill Zanders invested around €7m (£6.27m) in converting its on-site power plant from hard coal to natural gas… Brett Martin boosted its use of sustainable energy after striking a deal with a solar farm adjacent to its Belfast facility… Commercial printer Print Revolution was acquired by Nottingham-headquartered creative agency Ginger Root… IG Design Group agreed to take over its US rival Impact Innovations in a £56.5m deal that aimed to create “a new industry leader” in the gifting business…