The US-based Independent Publishers Group (IPG) has acquired United Independent Distributors (UID) in the UK, which includes distribution centres Marston, Orca Book Services and Turpin along with sales and marketing agency Eurospan.
IPG said the move expands on its core business of "providing publisher services to high-quality independent publishers from around the world".
The timing of the merger coincides with the opening of a brand new state-of-the-art warehouse facility in the south-east of England where the distribution centres will be consolidated. Earlier this year, it was announced Orca's 66,000 sq ft distribution centre in Poole, Dorset, was being closed by UID with the service moving to Biggleswade in Bedfordshire. Eurospan will retain its central London headquarters.
IPG said it will gain "new core competencies", such as Eurospan’s global network of sales and marketing channels, and Turpin’s renowned journals business, while the UK entities will gain IPG’s proprietary e-book platform and digital print solutions. IPG said the merger will offer "the most comprehensive platform of global services ever created to provide a seamless integration of sales, marketing, print and distribution to our ever-expanding lists of international publishers".
Joe Matthews, IPG chief executive oficer, said: “This historic merger provides exciting new opportunities to our publishing partners on both sides of the Atlantic, and creates an unrivalled menu of services to drive sales. I could not imagine a better way to celebrate IPG’s 50-year anniversary.”
Mark Chaloner, UID chief operating oficer, added: “This exciting new partnership enables the combined UID companies to step up to the next level and will provide a truly global reach to all our publishing clients."