End of era as Salmat seeks to wind itself up

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Former marketing services powerhouse Salmat will ask its general meeting at the end of the month for approval to delist, wind itself up, and appoint liquidators.

Two blokes and a map: Phil Salter and Peter Mattick
Two blokes and a map: Salmat sales in 1979

The company, which enjoyed supersonic growth for 35 years, sold its last two operational divisions earlier in the year. Its marketing solutions business was acquired by IVE, and its microsourcing business by Probe BPO.

The board considered the options with the money received, and has now concluded that what has been a stellar run has come to an end.

The voluntary liquidation will see a 66.5-cents-per-share payout to shareholders. All directors will vote in favour of the winding-up. There are currently 199,000,000 shares in the company, with around $133m to be divvied up between the shareholders. The liquidation is expected to cost between $50,000 and $200,000.

"It will be a sad day when we close the door for the final time," Rebecca Lowde, CEO of the company for the past three years, told Print21.

Salmat was founded by Phil Salter and Peter Mattick in 1979. Thirty years later it was a soaraway sucess as an $800m-a-year business. Growth came through their brilliant ability to understand the real needs of their clients, then come up with innovative, winning solutions for them.

Both retired from day-to-day activities in 2009. Salmat sold its business process outsourcing operation to Fuji Xerox three years later for $375m. Salter – known for his larger than life personality – passed away five years ago. Mattick returned as non-exec chairman in 2013, and has remained in the role ever since.

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