Australia’s third largest printing business Blue Star has started 2015 with a brand new acquisition with its purchase of Thompson Print and Displays, in a strategic bid to grow its wide format division. This acquisition of the award winning POS business, which has been operating for 29 years, will add screen printing capability to Blue Star’s existing sheetfed offset and large format digital production capabilities. Tony Kent, managing director of Thompson Print and Displays, who will assume a yet to be defined senior role within Blue Star business, was not available for comment. Speaking with Australian Printer, Matt Aitken CEO of Blue Star says the decision to buy Thompson PSO was made ‘only a couple of months ago’, and he says this acquisition might be just the beginning of several other business takeovers in 2015 He says, “The intended transaction forms part of an ongoing growth strategy to create a formidable offering for retailers and marketers in the retail marketing space in Australia.”
The Thompson PSO operation at Wetherill Park in Sydney will be integrated into Blue Star’s STI facility in Padstow also in Sydney, and will operate under the Blue Star STI brand. Aitken says Blue Star will continue to invest heavily in this area over the coming 12 months through significant additional investment in its digital point of sale production platforms and further potential acquisitions. While Aitken could not be drawn to say how many of the staff members from Thompson Print and Displays will continue their employment with the new company, he said there is a ‘significant number’ who will be moving across. “I don’t want to talk about staff numbers because we want to talk to them first and make them the offer, but it is not far off all the staff,” he says. He says the success of Blue Star, which has more than 1000 staff, is due to its employees and its strategy to grow organically. As well as investing significantly in the company to allow progress. And of course the acquisition related growth, which has been Blue Star’s long running tradition.
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