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Geoff Selig regains Blue Star Print Australia

Tuesday, 06 November 2012
By Print 21 Online Article

Geoff Selig, former CEO of  Blue Star and current owner of Sydney-based CaxtonWeb has bought Blue Star Print Australia. After having the company on the block for months, Champ Private Equity finally sold the Australian part of the business to the former NSW Liberal Party president.

A Blue Star source unofficially confirmed today [6 November] that CaxtonWeb is the buyer of the group’s Australian print business after weeks of speculation that Selig had been in talks to acquire the private equity owned trans-Tasman company.

Blue Star Group’s Australian operations include Blue Star IQ, PRINT, DM GO and Webstar. However, the deal does not extend to Blue Star’s New Zealand operation, which houses around eight businesses, including Panprint and Printlink. At the time of printing, neither party provided further comment on the deals details.

The sale of Blue Star Print Australia to CaxtonWeb sees Selig go another round with the company he left as CEO in 2007, shortly after it was purchased by Champ PE for NZ$385 million in late 2006.

In the lead up to the acquisition, industry speculation suggesting that if Selig did buy Blue Star Print Australia, his CaxtonWeb business would expand the struggling print company’s more profitable digital business along with its web business and ultimately shut down its traditional offset sheet-fed print division.

Certainly, much of Selig’s print history and experience lies firmly in the web offset sector, and his CaxtonWeb Sydney-based company already holds a strong position in the local industry’s heatset web offset market.

Blue Star Print Australia's new owner, Geoff Selig

Champ PE’s successful sale of Blue Star Print Australia to CaxtonWeb comes less than three months after Goldman Sachs was enlisted by Champ PE to facilitate the sale of Blue Star Group. With the multinational investment-banking firm overseeing the sale of the company, there were several potential buyers vying for the business.

In July, prior to the Goldman Sachs-managed sale process, Champ PE sold off Blue Star’s Rapid Labels division in New Zealand to diversified industrial company, Tiri Group, headed up by former Blue Star managing director Tom Sturgess, at the time opening the floodgates for the potential break-up of the company.

2 Responses to “Geoff Selig regains Blue Star Print Australia”

  1. November 07, 2012 at 10:58 am,

    Lee
    said:

    I’m not sure we should crack open the Champas just yet! This deal still has a long way to go. I’m sure the suppliers and staff are very keen to find out who has the debt. Have they sold the business or the company? Are they going to do what the market rumours suggest? Put it into VA or administration and start up under the same name next week? I Wouldnt think the debt has been taken over at all. Let’s wait and see.

  2. December 24, 2012 at 11:57 pm,

    thefly
    said:

    It’s late December and the Caxton side of the business has not been given a certain future, except one web press moving to silverwater. The employees have no promises and Caxton telling employees they will not honour pre Caxton time redundancy, there are a few very nervous christmas cheers at Huntingwood, Not so merry Christmas for them, and not such a clean take over, on the ground. Communication is not apparent.

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