Press release: Onlineprinters to Acquire Leading UK Online Printer Solopress

Investment in strongly growing UK market


Essex / Neustadt a. d. Aisch – Onlineprinters, one of Europe's largest B2B online printing companies, is about to acquire Solopress, a leading player in the UK online printing market. Solopress was founded in 2004 and has grown significantly in recent years reaching 225 employees in 2016. With “print delivered tomorrow” Solopress is uniquely positioned to fulfil customer demand for speed and quality. Solopress’ founders Aron Priest and Andy Smith will continue to lead Solopress as Managing Directors and become shareholders of Onlineprinters Group. Last year Bregal Unternehmerkapital became the new majority shareholder of Onlineprinters partnering with Project A and founder Walter Meyer to lead the company to its next phase of growth.

The parties involved in the acquisition have agreed not to disclose details of the transaction.

Onlineprinters was one of the First Movers in online printing, and in 2016 produced over 2.1 billion printed items. Having expanded its clientele by 100,000 new customers in 2016, the company welcomed its 600,000th customer in January 2017 and currently has more than 650 employees. Onlineprinters CEO Dr. Michael Fries commented about the deal, “We are glad that Solopress with its premier position in the UK market will become part of the Onlineprinters Group. The experience of the founders Aron Priest and Andy Smith will be instrumental in developing our UK business and helping to further develop Onlineprinters as a European leader in online printing.”

“With Onlineprinters we have found a partner who is one of the pre-eminent international players within the European online printing sector. The Onlineprinters Group provides the right framework to continue the successful development of Solopress,” says Solopress’ Co-Founder Aron Priest.

Growth strategy

The UK is one of the major European printing markets which has recently begun to accelerate in the transition to online print. “With Solopress we have a partner with a well established brand in the UK, a broad customer base, knowledge of the market and an efficient production facility, with high quality standards. The acquisition of Solopress strengthens the market position of Onlineprinters as one of Europe’s Top-5 online print providers,” explains Dr. Michael Fries.

Award winning quality and service

Solopress has grown year-on-year and won seven prestigious awards, including 'Business of the Year' and 'Business to Business of the Year'. Onlineprinters was awarded for excellent customer service several times in the past few years and has earned many commendations by renowned media outlets.

About Onlineprinters

Onlineprinters GmbH is one of Europe's top online print providers. In line with the motto “Print simply online!“ the company sells printed products to 600,000 customers in 30 European countries through its 16 web shops. Internationally, the company is known under the brand name “Onlineprinters“; in Germany it operates under the name “diedruckerei.de“. The product range comprises of 1,400 printed products from business cards, stationery and flyers to catalogues, brochures and large-format advertising systems. The formula to successfully produce customised prints in terms of Industry 4.0 rests on three pillars: online sales, fully integrated production from ordering to shipping and gang run printing. The latter uses so-called combined forms to collectively produce print jobs, therefore minimising costs and reducing the environmental impact. Selected products allow customers to choose the option of same day printing (produced on the same working day), overnight delivery, climate neutral production and custom size specification. Onlineprinters GmbH employs 650 staff and produces over two billion printed items per year.

About Solopress

Solopress is one of the UKs largest independent online printers, offering a wide range of business related printed products, including business cards, leaflets, brochures, posters and banners. With the maxim “Print Delivered Tomorrow” the company ships over 85% of its print jobs within 24 hours of being ordered. Last year alone Solopress produced over 300,000 online orders, and hit the 1,000,000th order milestone in October 2016. Within Solopress’ two sites covering more than 63,000 sq ft. the company boasts an impressive plant list including; 7 Heidelberg Speedmasters, 5 Xerox iGens and 9 Polar guillotines. These machines combined with an internally developed workflow and superb customer service (rated Excellent on Trustpilot with over 8,500 reviews) have seen Solopress achieve double digit growth for twelve consecutive years.

About Bregal Unternehmerkapital

Bregal Unternehmerkapital is part of a family-owned business that has been built up over generations. Its investment activity is based on long-term commitment and independent of developments in the financial markets. Bregal Unternehmerkapital identifies companies, with strong management teams, that are regarded as market leaders or “hidden champions” in their particular segment. Flexible financing and transaction structures enable it to acquire both minority and majority stakes. In doing so, Bregal Unternehmerkapital is also able to handle complex industry spin-offs, management buy-outs and succession situations in a sensitive, non-dogmatic manner. Bregal Unternehmerkapital aims to help companies to achieve a sustained improvement in sales and profitability, and provides them with capital, proven financial expertise and access to a broad network of entrepreneurs and industry experts.

About Project A

Project A is an operational VC that provides its ventures with capital, an extensive network and exclusive access to a wide range of operational expertise. The Berlin-based investor makes use of the €260m in assets under its management to back early-stage companies in the digital technology space. With its unique organizational structure featuring 100 operational experts, Project A offers its portfolio companies hands-on support in the areas of IT, Marketing & Brand Building, Business Intelligence, Sales and Recruiting. The portfolio includes companies such as Catawiki, WorldRemit, Tictail, Contorion, nu3, Lostmy.name and ZenMate. More about Project A on www.project-a.com  and on our blog insights.project-a.com.

Press contact Onlineprinters

Onlineprinters GmbH
Patrick Piecha
Head of Press & Public Relations
Phone:    +49 9161 6209807
                +49 174 3077250
press@onlineprinters.com
www.onlineprinters.co.uk

Press contact Solopress

Solopress
Julia Murray
Digital Marketing Manager
Phone:    +44 1702 460047
                +44 7702 202580
press@solopress.com
www.solopress.com

Press contact Bregal Unternehmerkapital

IRA WÜLFING KOMMUNIKATION GmbH
Dr Reinhard Saller / Florian Bergmann
Phone:      +49 89 2000 30-30
bregal@wuelfing-kommunikation.de

Press contact Project A

Project A
Konstanze Pflüger
Corporate Communications
Phone:      +49 30 340 606 321
konstanze.pflueger@project-a.com
www.project-a.com