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Seneca Funding Seals Future For 4th Generation Family Printers

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The rich heritage of a fourth generation family printing business in Doncaster has been secured along with fifteen jobs following a £270k lifeline from turnaround fund Seneca Investments.

hlw Keeble Hawson logoAskew Design & Print will be run and managed by the purchaser Sheffield-based specialist printer Whitesprint - another long-established business which five weeks ago became part of the Seneca investment portfolio after receiving a £200k injection which secured 37 jobs.

Said Patrick Bywater, a director of Seneca which was set up in 2011 to support the SME sector in a tough climate: “The Askew name and success story has been respected in Doncaster for the last nine decades and the funding and merger with Whitesprint looks set to seal its future as a provider of quality products for many more years to come.

“Aligned with our predictions that the printing industry - beset by challenges like many others - is moving towards significant consolidation, the combined expertise of Askews and Whitesprint will leverage their position in the Yorkshire marketplace.”

Said James Askew, the seller and great grandson of the founder George William Askew, who is retiring from the business following the purchase: “It’s tremendous that Askew’s proud heritage, which includes the business being the first printer in England to introduce the Helvetica typeface in the early 1960s, will live on through our team working with Whitesprint.”

Sheffield-based Strategic Corporate Finance and Kate Novakovic at Ironmonger Curtis LLP acted on behalf of Askew Design & Print, whilst hlw Keeble Hawson - one of the region's biggest practices with offices in Leeds, Sheffield and Doncaster - represented Seneca.

Greg Barker, a director at Strategic Corporate Finance, commented: “I am delighted to have helped James realise his objective of selling the business to a purchaser that intends to build on its rich history and stick to its Doncaster roots.”

Neil Large, corporate partner at hlw Keeble Hawson, added: “This deal is another powerful example of Seneca’s commitment to providing a lifeline for Yorkshire’s SMEs’ - and enabling Askew’s and Whitesprint to go from strength to strength.”

Concluded Whitesprint managing director John White: “This sale will enable both printing companies to further expand their offering to new and existing customers and enable us to play a key role in conserving and developing Yorkshire’s print industry.”

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