Omnigraphics set for boost in contract win

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Printing for the $300m City of Sydney outdoor advertising contract will change from GSP to Omingraphics, with its parent QMS taking the 10-year contract from GSP owner and long-time incumbent JC Decaux.

Game changing switch: Barclay Nettlefold, CEO, QMS
Game changing switch: Barclay Nettlefold, CEO, QMS

Omnigraphics claims to be Australia's biggest digital large format printer. However, the amount of print to be produced for the City of Sydney will likely shrink, as the winning QMS tender was based on a high digital conversion of outdoor assets.

Describing the win, Barclay Nettlefold, CEO of QMS, said, “This is a game changer, not only for QMS but for the broader OOH industry.”

Part of the deal will see a new suite of street furniture installed with digital panels. Lord Mayor Clover Moore said, “The new suite of furniture will help modernise our streets while also providing significant revenue to the City, which will help us maintain high quality services and public spaces for our residents, businesses and visitors.

“This deal means we will have the capability to display real-time event, transport and emergency information on modern, sustainably designed and energy-efficient street furniture.”

The City of Sydney contract is one of the world's biggest outdoor advertsing advertising. It has been held by JC Decaux since 1997. In fact, it was the foundation deal that saw the French outdoor giant enter the country.

QMS has owned large-format printers Omnigraphics, BMG, and MMT since 2015 – though around 81 per cent of its Australian media revenue for the first half of 2019 was from digital, rather than printed signage.

Sales at QMS in the first half of last year were up to $128.9m, while net profit after tax reached $16.5m. Print revenue was around $25m. QMS was bought by Quadrant private equity in October for $570m.

QMS will develop a new Sydney based operations hub to support installation, maintenance, cleaning, and repair with a dedicated operations and maintenance crew to service the new street furniture contract. The new contract will see QMS begin the inventory rollout in the second half of 2021.

Prior to this, there will be expansion of the business with more than 40 new appointments reflected across all key business functions as part of the commitment to outstanding service delivery for the City Of Sydney.

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