American Greetings delivers good news to Clinton Cards

The full impact of the economy on the British high street was again emphasised in early May, when retailer Clinton Cards went into administration and had to appoint the receivers to help it find a buyer. With the advent of online card design and delivery services like Moonpig and, the unprecedented rise in the cost of postage in the UK, and an increasing shift to email and text messaging as forms of sending messages to family and friends, the good old- fashioned greeting card, and the traditional method of selling them, were inevitably going to suffer. From a personal perspective I still enjoy sending and receiving cards from and to the people that I care about, and could not personally envisage replacing greeting cards with a text or an email. That said, I have found myself trying to get more organised, and remember to send things early so that a second class stamp will suffice to deliver my message in good time.

Therefore the news late last night that the US company American Greetings -  via its UK based subsidiary Lakeshore Lending - has agreed to acquire the brands and assets of Clinton Cards, along with around 400 of its high street shops is, for advocates of the written message like me, very good news. American had already acquired the senior secured debt for around USD 56 million, and in taking this next step of acquiring a number of stores and the assets and brands, enables American to now own outright the Clinton Cards business, which had in fact been a customer for a significant number of years. According to a press release issued by American Greetings, they have bid in the region of USD 37 million for the remaining assets and stores and anticipates preserving the jobs of around 4,500 employees.  Again, much needed good news for those whose jobs have been saved and for the wider British economy.

Perhaps the next time you think about sending a message to friends or family, take a moment to remember that the way you send it - electronically or by “snail mail” - does ultimately have a much wider economic impact.


Filed under: economy, greeting, M&A, retail, cards