Thursday, September 6, 2018

British Print Logistics Specialist Passes to New Owners  

One of Oldest Names in Distribution Changes Hands

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Shipping News Feature UK – The old established Scottish firm which newsagent John Menzies began in 1829 has undergone many changes in its history, and now the evolution which became logistics firm Menzies Distribution is set to continue its growth and diversification strategy as an independent company following the sale of the business by John Menzies, to private equity investor Endless LLP for an enterprise value of £74.5 million on a cash and debt free basis.

The sale of Menzies Distribution creates a pure play global aviation services business that is operating in a structural growth market and marks Menzies’ exit from the market for print media and retail logistics. Greg Michael, managing director of Menzies Distribution, said:

“This is great news for Menzies Distribution. Whilst it’s business as usual, becoming an independent company enables us to be in control of our own destiny and reinvest to fulfil our ambitious growth and diversification plans for the business. The recent major UK-wide primary trunking contract to collect and deliver all daily and regional weekly newspapers printed by Reach plc (formerly Trinity Mirror) is as an example of our successful diversification strategy in action.”

Headquartered in Edinburgh, Menzies Distribution operates one of the largest overnight time-critical logistics networks in the UK, providing final mile delivery for over 100 million delivery units each year and serving customers in the press, travel and third-party logistics sectors. While its core business is in strategic partnering with publishers to provide a sustainable route to market for their product, two years ago the company began a diversification strategy harnessing its network capabilities to work with national parcel carriers and to develop an innovative solution for retailers.

Following completion and as previously announced, Menzies will now revert to a more standard executive structure and has ratified the appointment of Forsyth Black as Chief Executive Officer of the Company with immediate effect. Black has been with Menzies for 17 years and will now focus his energies on continuing to grow its Aviation business in a market with strong growth dynamics. He commented:

“I am delighted to have concluded our strategic realignment that will see the creation of John Menzies plc as a global pure play aviation services business. I believe we are well-placed to deliver our growth ambitions in the structurally growing aviation services market and I am very proud to now lead the business forward as its CEO together with the support of my team.”

Last year, John Menzies were preparing to sell Menzies Distribution to DX Group for £40 million in cash plus new shares worth 65% of the combined entity but after a challenging year for DX, John Menzies pulled out of the deal. The deal had also faced opposition from Gatemore Capital Management which had a 20.3% stake in DX, though the companies seemed to have reached a revised agreement, prior to cancellation.

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