Card Factory buys South Africa firm

By Mark McSherry

Wakefield-based greeting card and gift retailer Card Factory said on Tuesday it has acquired SA Greetings Corporation (Pty) Ltd and its subsidiaries, which trade as SA Greetings, for £2.5 million in cash.

“SA Greetings is the leading wholesaler of greeting cards and gift packaging in South Africa,” said Card Factory.

“It also operates 24 ‘Cardies’ retail stores, with four further stores operated by franchisees, and owns and operates a roll-wrap production facility.

“Its head office and main warehouse are located in Johannesburg, with sales offices in Durban and Cape Town.

“The acquisition was financed from Card Factory’s working capital and is expected to be earnings enhancing.

“SA Greetings realised an EBITDA of £591,000 (unaudited), and a PBT of £165,000 from net sales of £9.4m (unaudited) during the 12 months to 28 February 2023 and had a net asset value of £5.8m and gross assets of £8.5m on this date.  (Exchange rate applied:  20 ZAR to 1 GBP 1).

“South Africa is one of the target territories for Card Factory’s partnership expansion.

“The acquisition of SA Greetings, supports this strategic growth pillar by providing access to key wholesale accounts through the company’s printing, merchandising and warehousing capacity.”

Card Factory CEO Darcy Willson-Rymer said: “We are delighted to have completed the acquisition of SA Greetings and look forward to working with our new colleagues.

“Under the continued leadership of SA Greetings MD, Willie Engelbrecht, we will closely collaborate to further enhance and develop opportunities for the Card Factory and SA Greetings businesses.

“SA Greetings brings with it significant experience operating a wholesale business, which can inform and support development of our retail partnership business, and is entirely aligned with Card Factory’s strategic plan for international expansion.

“As well as giving us a foothold into our target South African market, we will also be using their mature printing, merchandising and warehousing facilities to understand how we can deliver similar local capability in other target markets.”