Designing the deal


Design Objectives Ltd, the UK’s leading designer and distributor of products and accessories to the rapidly growing papercraft market has undergone a buy-out with the backing of Bowmark Capital Limited and The Royal Bank of Scotland.

Papercrafting is principally the design and decoration of home-made greeting cards, scrapbooks and personal mementos and is one of the fastest growing leisure pursuits in the UK. In the US papercrafting is a multi-billion dollar industry.

Andrew Knowles, managing director of Design Objectives, said: We are now looking to continue the strong growth of the past few years and to capitalise on some of the exciting new initiatives including the development of an e-commerce capability.”

Since 1995, Design Objectives has created many of the UK’s leading papercraft brands including Papermania, Anitas and X-cut. The company sells over 2000 products which are designed and distributed through the company’s facilities in Dorset. Manufacturing is outsourced predominately to the Far East and approximately 80 employees are based in the UK.

Retail customers include: WH Smith, Argos, QVC and other leading national retailers as well as local art and craft retailers. Design Objectives publishes ‘Do Crafts’, the industry-leading promotional magazine (with a 250,000 circulation) and website (150,000 registered users).

Bowmark provided £14 million of equity to finance the acquisition with the balance of funding via senior debt and working capital facilities being provided by The Royal Bank of Scotland together with a significant amount of vendor roll-over.