Die making and engraving group makes strategic acquisition to consolidate UK market position

Mark Ridings (Lasercomb) Martin Poynter (Arden Group) Alistair Baxter and Mark Guest (both Lasercomb)

Stockport based Arden Group has acquired Lasercomb Dies, cementing its position as the largest die-maker in the UK.

The Arden Group, based in Marple, Stockport, has this week completed the acquisition of Lasercomb Dies for an undisclosed sum.

Lasercomb Dies, which has a die-making and engraving arm, has a manufacturing site in Redditch with a team of around 80 employees, and operations will continue as normal following the take-over.

Martin Poynter, Managing Director of the Arden Group, which made £590,836 in pre tax profit last year  on turnover of £14.1million, said: “Much like Arden, Lasercomb is a leading name in die-making and engraving.”

He noted Lasercomb’s skills and expertise in “the flatbed folding carton market”. 

Poynter added: “While it will be very much business as usual for the long-established Lasercomb brand, we’re excited about the opportunities it presents for our customers and our combined workforce.

“With Arden located in the North and Lasercomb in the Midlands, this acquisition will support our ambitions to expand our operations and better meet the needs of our customers across the UK and beyond, as we consolidate our efforts and share our combined knowledge of the industry.

“In today’s economic climate, ensuring certainty in the supply chain is paramount. With this acquisition, we are better positioned to mitigate risks and guarantee continuity for our customers, while strengthening our position within the market as the largest die-maker in the UK.”

The family-owned Arden Group of companies comprises Arden Dies, Arden Engraving and Arden Software. Founded as a die-makers in 1964, this year the Arden Group celebrates 60 years in business. In total, Arden Group employs 165 people around the world.

Meanwhile, this year marks 40 years in business for Lasercomb, which was founded in 1984 as a manufacturer of press ready die tooling systems for the print and packaging industries. 

Martin Poynter added: “2024 is a very special anniversary year for both Arden and Lasercomb, so it feels very apt that this acquisition presents a unique opportunity to combine a century of knowledge, innovation, and industry expertise, as we build on a new future together.”

Both Arden and Lasercomb are BOBST certified die-makers, which is an advanced certification for professional die-makers to provide high performance tooling.

Arden takes over the business from the three current shareholders and directors – Mark Ridings, Alistair Baxter and Mark Guest. Alistair Baxter will stay on as Sales Director and the current Managing Director Mike Allsop will also continue in his role.

Speaking on behalf of the Lasercomb shareholders, Mark Ridings, said: “Reflecting on our journey with Lasercomb, we’re proud to have been part of an organisation that has garnered a solid reputation as one of the UK’s leading and best-known die-makers. We feel confident that the combined strengths of Arden and Lasercomb will deliver real benefits for our customers and ensure a sustained and strong future for the workforce.”

The acquisition was supported by JMW solicitors and UHY financial advisers.

Mark Heppell and David Easdown of JMW led the legal aspects of the transaction. Mark Heppell, Partner at JMW, said: “This is an exciting deal for Arden Group and represents a key milestone in their esteemed history. It was a great pleasure to contribute to making this exciting proposition become a reality and we look forward to working with the team as the business continues to grow.”

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