PG Buzz looks back at an eventful year for the greeting card industry
What a year! After 2022 started with high hopes thanks to the receding pandemic, it’s turned out to be a somewhat turbulent 12 months for everyone, not least the greeting card industry.
As retailers tot up their Christmas takings and we all look forward to welcoming in a new year, PG Buzz takes a look back at the most-read stories on the site throughout 2022.
The Christmas spirit was strong for a great many indies – retailers were more than happy to report a very merry Christmas trade.
Another 20 stores on cards for Cardzone in 2022 – signalling great confidence in the sector, Cardzone directors Paul and James Taylor set their sights on adding 20 stores to the retail group’s estate.
Card Factory reports Christmas sales almost back to pre-Covid levels – the UK’s largest greeting card retailer sent out a confident message about the greeting card sector as a whole.
65% of card indies grew their business in the last year – the PG Retail Barometer showed resilient is the word that indie retailers felt best sums up the greeting card industry.
The Art File pulls out eco stops for 25th anniversary – publisher’s team does its bit for the planet.
Greeting card industry being hit by severe board shortages and soaring costs – shortage of one-side coated boards and soaring costs cause havoc to many publishers, printers and board suppliers.
Monarch marks 70 years as Queen of cards – plenty of cards landed at Buckingham Palace to celebrate the UK’s longest-serving monarch’s 70th jubilee.
Numbers add up for successful Buddy tour – trip takes in four forms of transport, 2,300 miles, 36 customers, and a quiet pint in separate pubs.
74% of UK households bought greeting cards in 2021 Q4 – Kantar reveals UK public spent £317m on cards in final three months of last year.
Paul Fineman steps down at IG Design Group – ceo cites personal reasons for surprise move after 17 years.
Chew on that Putin! – dog toys lighten mood and aid animal charities as greetings industry steps in to help Ukraine crisis.
Walk the talk with women like Claire Giles – UPS showcases publisher for Women’s History Month campaign and webinar to boost female-led businesses.
Greetings sales help reinstate John Lewis partner bonus – category up 117% as department store chain hits highest sales yet at £4.93bn.
UK Greetings ups dedication to saving forests – leading publisher renews commitment to offset entire annual paper consumption.
WHSmith to deliver cards in 20mins with Deliveroo – retailer’s new rapid delivery trial includes greeting cards in product line-up.
GCA strongly urges Royal Mail not to reduce delivery service Amanda Fergusson, GCA ceo, involved in high-level talks with postal operator.
Greeting cards come out tops for gift indies – annual retail research reveals indie gift shops are feeling positive about 2022.
Cards 2 Confetti’s Nick O’Brien off to Ukraine with much-needed items – card indie and fellow RNLI volunteers call for more donated goods to fill two Transits.
Janet waves goodbye to best job ever – pals thank G.F Smith’s greeting card consultant for all the help, fun times and laughter.
Great sadness: Industry legend David Hicks has died – tributes pour in about the wonderful man who was a friend and inspiration to so many.
Right royal birthday buddies – 11 years on Austin & Co and No14 Ampthill celebrate with Her Majesty
Tache celebrates Louies triumph – owners Frank and Pennie put on the glamour at US awards ceremony.
UK Greetings ups diversity offer through collaborations – publisher works with AfroTouch Design and Eastern Print Studio for Kindred launches.
Tom Rolt’s worth it as new Hallmark MD – exec leaves L’Oréal to take over at greeting card giant’s UK, Ireland and Australia group.
Moonpig broadens offer with £124m Buyagift acquisition – deal to complete by July and expand ‘make greeting card the gift’ opportunity.
Card Factory hailed one of UK’s Top 10 Best Big Companies – staff satisfaction sees specialist greetings retailer in HR league table.
Hot off the press – MBO at Loxleys Print – Tony Lorriman and three colleagues continue legacy of Sheffield printer.
PG Live 2022’s global gathering – retailers, publishers, overseas distributors and trade suppliers relished in the show business.
Rosie’s thing is her first book – HarperCollins approached comic card publisher for gift tome that’s set for Christmas sales.
Sad passing of Nathan Hitchcock – Abacus’ national sales manager died suddenly.
Retail boost for Black-owned publishers – greetings businesses involved as first permanent Black Pound Day store opens.
TOYW schools link between UK and Ghana – get your local primary involved in GCA’s Schools Initiative to help writing by exchanging cards.
Best greeting card retailers feted in The Retas – the UK’s greatest indies and multiples were crowned at the Mary Poppins-esque event.
High way to mark Rachel Ellen’s 25th – very special boss dances her way through Truly Wicked party enjoyed by staff.
Scribbler and FujiFilm press buttons with new card kiosk – leading retailers and other potential partners show their interest.
V&A launches Sincerely, Valentines show – Dundee museum pays tribute to famous Scottish publisher with free exhibition.
Sir Cliff puts Danilo in the news – national media coverage as pop idol’s 38th annual licensed calendar set to be a bestseller again.
UKG helps The Sun’s kids Christmas card comp – winning trio of designs will be sold through Tesco raising funds for Children With Cancer UK.
Dock strike adds to publishers’ supply chain woes – greeting cards affected with UK port closed to container ships, call for retailers to get orders in early.
Thank you Ma’am, for everything – cardies show their respect for The Queen after 70 years of dedicated service.
Impressed by InPress – cardies enjoy seeing designs brought to life at The Imaging Centre’s inaugural seminar.
Greeting card bounce back – sales rise by 11%, £1.5bn spent on single cards – more revealed at GCA annual conference.
Postal strikes to affect Christmas build-up – latest stoppage starts 19 days of industrial action as union escalates Royal Mail dispute.
The Henries 2022 Winners Revealed – winners of The Henries 2022 greeting card industry awards announced at a fabulous awards event, hosted by comedian and TV personality Patrick Kielty.
Cardgains is right on target – buying group’s 22-mile Ultimate Ullswater challenge hits £22,000 goal.
GCA talks sense in Westminster – negative impact of Royal Mail strikes and upheaval at docks rammed home.
King restarts 100th birthday tradition – Charles and Camilla photo adorns new-look cards to delight of first recipients.
Retailers hope for a Mary Christmas – indies expect profits and sales upturn as expert tells shoppers to support High Street.
Card Factory celebrates 25 years – greetings retailer marks quarter century with call to founder, and more store openings.
Downyourhighstreet.co.uk in liquidation – greeting card indies affected by plug being pulled from this route to online.
WHSmith returns to profit – ‘stable’ £1.6bn UK greeting card market helps retailer’s significant recovery to ‘strongest-ever position’.
Joe Lycett’s Christmas cards to help those hit by Paperchase debts – comic’s campaign trends on social media while packs have sold out.
GCA call to write to MPs over Royal Mail – industry association urges members’ action on threat to cut Saturday letter deliveries.
Paul Steele RIP – former owner of Hotchpotch, Saffron, and Anything Goes has passed away.
All change at top of Cardgains! – Penny Shaw takes over as buying group md as Chris Dyson retires.
Government hears greetings industry concerns – GCA gets issues on radar as Thortful reveals £1m losses due to postal strikes.
Scout Post beats Royal Mail – Swindon’s scout service sees 11% increase as youngsters hand-deliver Christmas cards.
Comic calls out Paperchase on TV – Joe Lycett gives £17k to publishers after retailer’s pre-pack admin deal.
And finally…the PG and PG Buzz team of Jakki, Warren, Tracey A and Tracey B wishes everyone a happy and prosperous New Year.