By Wayne Robinson | June 10, 2022
Opus Group buys Ovato’s book printing business for $8.5 million and makes an additional $2.5 million investment in Ovato, in the form of a convertible note due to mature in 18 month.
Opus will retain the book printing business – formerly known as Griffin Press – at its current location in Adelaide, with the aim of retaining all staff and equipment from 80 to 90. Richard Celarc, CEO of Opus, said: “This is a great facility, and it complements our book factories at McPherson’s and Ligare well, they all have their specialties.
“Bookmaking is coming back to Australia, in part because of the shipping crisis, and Opus is in a great position to give book publishers what they want. Our goal is to stimulate local manufacturing.
Opus Group sources the majority of its book paper from local mills in Maryvale and Tasmania.
Opus is owned by Hong Kong-based Left Field Print Group, which injected $10 million into Ovato two months ago, in the form of a $5.1 million loan and a $4 chattel mortgage. .8 million. Left Field now owns approximately 14.7% of Ovato. However, Celarc said Print21“There is no intention to take over Ovato. Catalogs are not our domain.
The final $11 million raised by Ovato from Opus will be used in the company’s general working capital. The deal is subject to the ACCC, which overturned a similar deal a decade ago when Opus tried to buy what was then PMP’s book business, but Celarc said: “The world has changed, we are all confident that it will come to fruition.”
The sale of the book printing business makes Ovato a 100% heatset printing operation, as the company has divested all of its other businesses in the past year, including marketing and distribution of magazines. It also closed its heatset business in New Zealand.
James Hannan, CEO of Ovato, said: “This deal provides an updated debt profile and a pathway to equity and investment from an experienced industry player. A refocusing of Ovato’s focus will only strengthen our ability to continue to deliver quality and efficiency to our valued customers in our packaging, sheetfed and offset businesses.
What is Griffin Press is a technologically advanced company, with a complete on-demand digital printing line with HP digital canvas and HP Indigo for printing covers. It also has an advanced Kolbus binding line.
Opus already owns book printers Ligare and McPherson’s, as well as government and commercial printer CanPrint. He became part of Left Field five years ago when he was removed from ASX.