Merger gets go-ahead: Industry reaction

Industry body ACCC has approved the PMP IPMG merger, with printers giving it a mixed reaction

A spokesperson for PMP says CEO Peter George is not surprisingly delighted to be able to complete the merger, which will see a reduction in production capacity in a tight market.

He says, “What it does do, is create certainty. It gives the opportunity to build a competitive and sustainable community with synergies between the two, which will be developed and delivered over the next two months.”

IPMG says it is unable to comment due to PMP being the spearhead in the merger and a being public company.

[Related: ACCC gives PMP IPMG merger green light]

Andrew Macaulay CEO, PIAA says when he asked members for their view on this merger, the feedback was unanimous that the merger should be allowed.

“The ACCC wanted to hear from the voice of the industry, it was pleased the industry made a submission and followed up. We met with the ACCC in Canberra on Tuesday morning and made our case. We have gone to the membership to seek their views. Of those who responded to our question it was unanimous that this merger should not be obstructed.

“We are happy the ACCC listened to voice of industry. I look forward to the benefits of innovation and efficiency flowing through this merger, at that end of the market,” he says.

Kellie Northwood, executive director, Australian Catalogue Association (ACA) says the company is pleased with the ACCC’s decision to support the merger.

“The catalogue and wider print industry has experienced, and continues to experience, significant challenges which require strategic consideration to ensure a strong future. The ACA would like to thank the industry, retailers, and key stakeholders who have given valuable time and support over the past year in regards to this issue, helping build a sustainable future for the industry.

“The ACA is also grateful to the ACCC's consideration of our submission and to our ongoing engagement. Congratulations of course to PMP and IPMG on today's news,” she says.

Geoff Selig, executive chairman at rival IVE says it was predictable that the ACCC gave them the go ahead with the merger. “We are not surprised, but equally we are very focused on our customers and plans for the coming year,” he says.

[Related: PMP to merge with IPMG]

Lorraine Cassin, National Print Division Secretary at AMWU says, “For us it is very early days. We have only just heard about the merger. We have contacted both employers seeking consultation meeting to sit down and discuss what this means, the implications and how to avert job losses.”

“Once we have had those consultations we can talk about what that means for both companies. Our members have told us that they were comfortable, they felt this was probably the only path forward for the consolidation of the industry.

“Our members are telling us this is a necessary thing, now we must have this discussion. We have nothing, only speculations. The talks between PMP and IPMG will happen in the next three to four weeks. Both companies are heavily unionised heavily with certified agreements,” she says.

Michael Smithe, managing director at Immij says, “I am not totally familiar with the circumstances with the merger, if it strengthens two businesses it is a good outcome for both parties.” 

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