Print Industry News: wide format print operator bought out of administration; director gets lengthy ban; and Brexit red tape hits magazine

Print Industry News: wide format print operator bought out of administration; director gets lengthy ban; and Brexit red tape hits magazine

Print Week are known for their breaking news on innovative technology, big name and big value purchases and company expansions. And they also report on the darker side of the print and allied industries as is witnessed this week – with the effect of Covid on another firm.

Pre-pack concerns

Richard Stuart-Turner reported from Print Week on the PFI Group acquiring Creative Digital Images out of administration. The Manchester firm also announced how it planned to expand despite the pandemic and a growing recession.

Ian Carrotte of ICSM Credit expressed concerns over the details of the pre-pack – a form of company rescue that has gained a dubious reputation in recent years.

He said: “We’ve seen a number of these deals over the past three or four years and although they may sound good on the surface in reality the company that is saved either goes bust at a later date or is stripped of assets. Obviously we’ll have to see what happens in this case. My main concern is for the suppliers. When a firm goes into administration some suppliers may not get paid but if the firm survives as in this case those suppliers usually hope to get compensation with the new owners with future work.”

Joint adminstrators

Print Week’s Richard Stuart-Turner said: “Manchester-headquartered PFI completed the deal on 7 January, the same day that David Acland and Paul Whitwam of FRP Advisory were appointed as joint administrators of Bradford-based Creative Digital Images. In a statement, the administrators said their appointment followed ‘a period of declining revenues brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic’. On appointment, the administrators completed the pre-pack sale of the business to PFI Group, preserving all 36 roles.”

However PFI said Creative Digital Images would retain the staff “for the foreseeable future”. This said Ian Carrotte was a hint of what could happen in the future.

Bad haircut

Jo Francis, that doyen of the print industry, has reported on Jasvir Singh Dhillon who was a director of Deluxe Printers Ltd, which traded from a unit in Acton, west London. He has been handed a nine year ban from being a company director – that is even longer than the Bonnie and Clyde of the print industry for their fraudulent activities.

Jo Francis said: “According to the Insolvency Service, Dhillon ‘caused or allowed Deluxe Printers to submit inaccurate VAT returns for 31 consecutive VAT quarters’, and this allowed the firm to reclaim VAT refunds totalling £543,781 “to which it was not entitled”.

“The period in question ran from the VAT quarter ended June 2010 to September 2017. Deluxe Printers went into liquidation in 2019. In their report into the affairs of the company, the joint liquidators state that they were made aware the firm’s VAT returns had been erroneously filed, and that HMRC suspected the returns were deliberately falsified.”

Print Week are known for the comments under each story on the website. One comment pointed out the taxman was cheated out of hundreds of thousands of pound while a shop lifte could end up in jail. On a more amusing note Boxman said: “For that mullet he should get two years.”

Missing CD

Finally Print Week report on a publisher caught out by Brexit red tape. They reported: “The March issue of Mojo should have featured a compilation CD of Cure cover versions. While the magazines are printed, the CDs were stranded on the continent and did not arrive in time for distribution. The magazine’s editor John Mulvey tweeted about the new issue, and said: ‘We've had problems getting our monthly CDs delivered from Europe, so unfortunately this month's issue in UK shops – on sale Wednesday – won't come with the CD. We're hugely sorry about this...’”

About ICSM Credit

ICSM Credit has more than four decades of experience as a credit intelligence group whose members gain inside information about firms in trouble allowing them to avoid bad debts and rogue traders. To join costs less than a tank of fuel - while at the moment there's a special free temporary membership offer during the Covid-19 crisis which gives access to free legal letters. ICSM also has an effective debt collecting service which has a global reach - ask for details from Paul.

For details about ICSM Credit call 0844 854 1850 or visit the website or email Ian at on how to subscribe and to join the UK’s credit intelligence network to avoid bad debts and late payers. Follow ICSM Credit on FaceBook, Twitter and YouTube and Ian Carrotte on LinkedIn.

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