Hyde Park Press calls in administrators after sales slump

Tim Clifton and Mark Hall from Clifton Hall were appointed administrator on 14 November.

Hyde Park managing director Barry Davis told ProPrint that the Adelaide firm had almost exhausted its cash reserves after experiencing a steady decline in sales since October 2010.

He said Hyde Park had maintained its market share and generally kept up its margins, but “the ongoing state of the printing industry in Australia” meant there was now less work around. He added that costs had also risen, including a $2,000 jump in monthly electricity, which he blamed on the carbon tax.

“The September quarter was a shocker… We could’ve gone on for a little longer, but I could see the writing on the wall.”

Davis said creditors had provided strong support and had not cut off supply. He also said the 50 staff were working hard in an effort to get through $800,000 of work in progress.

“Even though we’re in the hands of administrators, it’s still business as usual,” he said. No redundancies have been made, he added.

Davis said he hoped to sell Hyde Park as a going concern. He described it as an excellent business with a “strong client base”, “modern machinery” and a “well-maintained factory”. He also pointed to its award wins – the firm won a bronze medal for book printing at this year’s National Print Awards and two gold medals for book printing at the recent PICAs.

Hyde Park’s main presses are three Heidelberg Speedmasters – a five-colour CD 74, five-colour 102 and two-colour 102. It also has a range of Canon and Océ digital equipment and a full bindery, said Davis.

Clifton Hall director Simon Miller told ProPrint that the administrators were now trying to determine the size of the firm’s debts. He added that it was too early to determine how much money creditors would get back.

He said Clifton Hall had been contacted by potential buyers.

He also said there was no firm timeline for a potential sale, but that expressions of interest may be sought for about one more week, with a sale to be finalised by around the middle of December.

[Related: More news about companies in distress]

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