Foresight backs BIMBO of Company Cards with £1.9m investment

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MANCHESTER/NOTTINGHAM, 26 October 2018: Foresight Group LLP (“Foresight”) announces the £1.9 million investment supporting the buy-in management buyout of specialist printed plastic card manufacturing business, Company Cards Limited (“Company Cards” or the “Company”).

To view or print this announcement as a pdf please click here.

Company Cards is a focused digital printing business specialising in printed plastic card manufacture. Its key products include identity, RFID, membership, gift and loyalty cards. The Company has established itself as one of the UK’s leading small batch card manufacturers through its responsiveness and service levels, which enables it to fulfil orders of between 250 – 25,000 units to short turnaround times.  The Company’s main customers are print brokers and print management companies ultimately supplying thousands of SME’s throughout the UK.  The Company also offers print finishing services through its subsidiary, The Finishing Touch, and a direct to consumer offering through its online portal, The Plastic Card Factory.

Based in St Helens, Merseyside, Company Cards was founded in 1996 by husband and wife team Tim and Christina Scott, who will remain involved with the business post investment along with longstanding operations manager Steve Abbott and commercial manager Hannah Johnson who becomes a Director of the Company. The Company currently employs 36 members of staff.

As part of the investment, Foresight has introduced incoming CEO, Andy Matko, the former MD of Magicard, a desktop card printer manufacturer, where he oversaw significant growth. Also joining the business is Finance Director, Nicola Beamish, who has extensive experience working with SMEs, large corporates and PE backed businesses and Chairman Chris Clegg a former Partner with Endless LLP.

Commenting on the deal Rob Jones, Investment Manager at Foresight, commented: “Company Cards is a successful family business which has posted double digit revenue growth in each of the last four years. Its established market position and recent investment in state-of-the-art equipment leave it well placed to take advantage of numerous future development opportunities whilst it’s web-to-print capability opens up an attractive segment of the market. We look forward to working alongside the new management team in the next phase of the company’s growth trajectory.”

Tim Scott, Founder, Company Cards, added: “Company Cards has been our family business for over 20 years, and the rate of growth since inception is incredible. With Foresight’s investment and support, the doors are open for the Company to continue its success as we take a step back over time. Foresight had a strong reputation in the region and I look forward to working with the team.”

Earlier this month, Foresight’s Regional Investment Fund supported the partial buy-out of ABL Health. This makes Company Card the eleventh investment by the North-West focused Fund. The Foresight Nottingham Fund recently announced a mezzanine investment into Alpkit, a Nottingham-based retailer of outdoor clothing and equipment.

The investment into Company Cards is split equally between two of Foresight’s institutional regional funds: Foresight Regional Investment LP Fund (“FRIF”) and Foresight Nottingham Fund (“FNF”).



For further information contact:

Ben Thompson, Group Marketing Director, Foresight Group / 020 3667 8155



Legal:                    Gately Plc (Foresight)

Ward Hadaway (Company Cards)

Due Diligence:

Financial:             PKF Cooper Parry

Commercial:       RPL

Management:   Catalysis

Lead Adviser:     Hurst (led by Nigel Barratt and Ryan Niblock) (Company Cards)

Senior Debt Facility:        Santander (Growth Capital team led by Ash Chopra and Jamie Brownlie)

About Foresight Group LLP ("Foresight”):

Foresight is a leading independent infrastructure and private equity investment manager which has been managing investment funds on behalf of institutions and retail clients for more than 30 years.

Foresight has more than £2.5 billion of Assets Under Management across a number of funds, including Listed Vehicles, Limited Partnerships, Enterprise Investment Schemes (EISs), Venture Capital Trusts (VCTs) and Inheritance Tax Solutions using Business Property Relief (BPR).

Foresight’s Private Equity team, comprising 24 investment professionals, pursues four discrete but complementary investment styles: Venture, Impact, Growth and Replacement Capital through its growing regional office network.

Foresight was voted ‘Best VCT Investment Manager’ at the 2017 Growth Investor Awards, having been previously awarded ‘VCT House of the Year’ at the 2016 Unquote British Private Equity awards.  Foresight was recently a shortlisted finalist in the 2018 Unquote British Private Equity Awards as Venture and Growth Capital House of the Year.

Foresight is headquartered in London with regional UK offices in Manchester, Nottingham, Milton Keynes, Leicester and Guernsey and international offices in Sydney, Rome, Seoul and Madrid.

About Foresight Regional Investment Fund (FRIF):

The £58 million Foresight Regional Investment Fund is dedicated to making equity investments of up to £5 million in small and medium sized growth companies in the North West of England, North Wales and South Yorkshire. Foresight is focused on applying a professional approach to small cap private equity: working in partnership with management teams to grow their companies and create value for all shareholders.

Foresight Regional Investment Fund currently holds 13 portfolio companies, spread across the healthcare, retail, engineering, e-commerce and leisure. Since the Fund’s inception, FRIF has created 260 jobs in the region.

Foresight, on behalf of the Fund, is seeking to make investments into eligible businesses in the Region to support the growth plans and business opportunities that exist today and in the future.

For more information please visit:

About Foresight Nottingham Fund (FNF):

The £39 million Foresight Nottingham Fund is a dedicated regional growth fund that has been created to support small and medium sized companies in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.

Foresight Nottingham Fund currently holds 22 portfolio companies, spread across sectors including the retail sector, technology, software analytics and education.

The Foresight Nottingham Fund is in part backed by the British Business Bank, a wholly owned plc of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, under their Enterprise Capital Fund programme in the UK.

Foresight on behalf of the Fund, is seeking to make investments between £100,000 and £2 million into eligible businesses in the Nottinghamshire region to support the growth plans and business opportunities that exist today and in the future.

For more information please visit: