The Simon Elvin Group – which includes Paper Rose, Nigel Quiney Publications, giftwrapping company Glick, own brand supplier Polytint and wholesale card and wrap business, Simon Elvin Limited – has been acquired through an MBO by Paper Design Group, a newly formed holding company which has Ian Jackson (pictured above right with Simon Elvin) at the helm as its chief executive.
Ian, in addition to having been managing director of Polytint Cards (a company he ran with his father until it was acquired by Simon Elvin several years ago), was appointed to the board of the Simon Elvin group in June 2018 as part of the succession plan for the business.
Simon and Janet Elvin, who started the Simon Elvin wholesale card business back in 1977 and have added to the group through various acquisitions (the most recent being assets and brands of Grassroots International last year) are to continue to play an active role as directors of the Wooburn Green-based wholesale card company.
Although now 78 years old, Simon has continued to ‘come to work’ every day, invariably joined by Janet. Over the years he has brushed off any suggestion that he might consider retiring saying that he had no intention of taking up golf and greeting cards are his only hobby!
“When Ian came to me in the Autumn to discuss the possibility of an MBO it made sense. While Janet and I want to keep working here for at least another five years, we also wanted to ensure the future for our staff and customers,” Simon told PG Buzz. “Ian is absolutely the right successor to head up the business. He has 30 years of industry knowledge and shares the same ingrained ethical values as Janet and I. This is the perfect way for the Simon Elvin group legacy to continue.”
The intention is that it will be ‘business as usual’ with Paper Rose, Nigel Quiney, Glick, Polytint and Simon Elvin continuing to be run as separate businesses with their own respective senior management teams.
“My true love is the Simon Elvin part of the business and I look forward to still being very much involved in that,” said Simon.
Summing up his thoughts Ian told PG Buzz that he felt “incredibly proud” that Paper Design Group had acquired the Simon Elvin Group. “This MBO thankfully enables Simon and Janet to continue to play an important role in the Simon Elvin business, which is critical to its ongoing success. I have been fortunate to work with Simon for over nine years, following his acquisition of Polytint in 2010. It has been an absolute privilege to work alongside such a true gentleman and industry legend. His support and advice have been invaluable to me, and him remaining as managing director at Simon Elvin Ltd is a tremendous asset to the new Group, and our industry as a whole.”
Highlighting the broad strength of the group under the five separate companies, Ian added “We have a fantastic Group management team in place to oversee and drive future growth. Under the new Paper Design Group umbrella we cater for the own label, wholesale, and DTR sectors. The scale at which we do this is unrivalled in this industry. If I look at the amazingly diverse range of design talent that we have within the Group, I conclude that humour is our one area of weakness. That needs addressing!”
This news comes three months after Simon Elvin was presented with a special GCA Outstanding Contribution to the Greeting Card Industry award at The Henries last October in recognition of his enormous commitment to the greeting card trade.
The group’s 50% stake in the Hendersons card business in Australia
is not part of the MBO deal. This remains owned by Simon and Janet Elvin.
Top: Simon Elvin (left) and Ian Jackson.