Civic Media goes under as Middelton cites pricing

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Well known Queensland grand format print business Civic Media is in voluntary liquidation, with owner Adam Middleton citing unsustainable pricing for the demise of the once booming business that has gone down with $1.4m of debts.

Civic Media Pty Ltd was put into liquidation on the last day of PrintEx. The brand is now part of local rival SS Signs, which has also bought some of the equipment and offered jobs to some of the staff.

Tough run: Adam Middleton (left) in happier times
Tough run: Adam Middleton (left) in happier times

Speaking to Print21 Middleton said, “It has been a hard run, and devastating for us. We ran into difficulties six months ago, we just couldn’t get the work at the prices we needed to fill our printers. Pricing in the market was unsustainable, we chewed through our cash flow.”

Of its debts some $1.03m is owed to unsecured creditors, with $380,000 to employees. There are 91 creditors, 20 of them staff.

Owned by Middleton and established in 2010, Civic Media was a major player in the grand format world of the Sunshine State. It ran a host of advanced print systems, including two five metre wide systems. It had 25 staff on the books.

Middleton said, “It is a tough business, I take my hat off to anyone running a print company. We had a few years of success, but then some of the pricing became ridiculous. We lost work to overseas competitors and to local printers.”

Middleton has been spending time paying off creditors, with the remaining debts now in the hands of the liquidator.

The Civic Media brand is one of several acquired by fast-expanding SS Signs over the past three years. The company has grown from five staff to 45 over the past decade. It is currently expanding its current 800sqm to 2500sqm.

The Brisbane based sign and display business is owned by Steve and Selina Lambourne. The company caters for everyone from small businesses through to blue chip clients, with a variety of products including LED, vehicle wrapping and Skyboards.

SS Signs, is now one of the largest signage solutions companies in south east Queensland, and is also one of the more capable custom grand format prints houses with proven capabilities in both printed and Digital LED media solutions. Rob Sharp, general manager told Print21, “We took the opportunity to add the Civic Media brand, and some of the equipment to our business. We have a clear focus, producing both print and digital LED displays. We are now the largest supplier of LED signage in Queensland.”

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