The UK’s biggest toymaker, Vivid, has been sold to a private equity firm. The Guildford-based company, which has the licence for Thunderbirds toys, has been acquired by Privet Capital, the London-based investor.
Vivid Toy Group has annual revenues of £83 million and employs more than 120 people. The private company was backed by Phoenix Equity Partners, but after engaging KPMG to look for new investors, Privet will now step in and support the business.
Vivid is one of Europe’s leading independent branded toys and games companies, licensing, designing, manufacturing and selling a combination of in-house developed toy and games IP and third-party IP licences to major retailers in the UK, France, Germany, Benelux and US markets including Tesco, Argos, Wal-Mart, Carrefour, Toys R Us, Smyths, The Entertainer and Amazon.
The company is headquartered in Guildford, and has additional sales and marketing operations in Paris and Frankfurt, as well as operations in China. Vivid’s core product lines are toys, games, and arts & crafts.
Vivid is best known in the industry for its association with blockbuster brands over the years such as Moshi Monsters, Thunderbirds, Bratz Dolls, Animagic, Articulate, Logo, Crayola and many others. The company is very enthusiastic about the new developments it is working on and excited about the future opportunities for expansion around the world.
Vivid has a strong track record of investing in products with long lasting appeal, and its existing core brands have predictable revenue streams that comprise over 60% of company sales. Future growth opportunities have been identified across its in-house brand portfolio, strategic alliances with content owners, capturing additional distributor products, targeting high-growth areas in various sub-sectors and building market share in new and existing markets.
Eric Rossi, chief executive of Vivid, said: “With Privet Capital’s backing, we are well supported to accelerate Vivid’s growth path including some exciting new initiatives. This investment, as well as ongoing operational support from the Privet team, will enable us to continue developing Vivid’s strong product portfolio – particularly within the collectables segment and certain licenses, as well as strengthen further the Company’s excellent long-standing customer relationships with the world’s leading toy and games retailers.”
Vardhan Rajkumar, senior partner at Privet Capital, commented: “We are extremely pleased to have acquired Vivid which we believe has significant growth potential. Vivid is an exciting business with an impressive track record of ‘end-to-end’ excellence in each of its core functions, from procurement and product design through to marketing and sales via its unrivalled distribution network and retail relationships worldwide. Privet’s investment and operational guidance will support the continued enhancement of Vivid’s in-house developed brand portfolio and expansion overseas.”