PE-Owned Moss Expands Into the UK With Strategic Acquisition of MacroArt
Moss Inc. –– a Franklin Park, Ill.-based producer of premium graphics, complex structures and custom installations for brand experiences — has expanded into the U.K. with the strategic acquisition of MacroArt, a wide-format print, graphics and branding specialist. Managing Director Michael Green and the senior leadership team of MacroArt will remain in their roles, reporting to Moss President and CEO Jason Popp. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
“The U.K. is clearly an established and vibrant market for experiential, entertainment, sport and retail brand marketers,” Popp said. “Many of our customers are already active in the U.K., and we are delighted to partner with both a high-caliber team and a strong business to accelerate our vision of being a truly global production partner for branded experiences.”
Founded in 1992, MacroArt delivers innovative and sustainable print solutions to clients across live events, retail, sport, heritage, property and visitor attractions. The company’s in-house print, production and finishing facility combines the latest materials, color management and print technologies to provide visually impactful branded solutions for its extensive client base that includes many of the world’s biggest brands and their agencies.
“Moss is a leading global player and their investment in MacroArt is a testament to the talent of our people and the loyalty of our customers,” said Green. “The combination of Moss and MacroArt represents great news for customers, our employees and the growth potential of both businesses. We share the same values on sustainability, service, innovation and a commitment to a strong people culture that make this such a great fit.”
A portfolio company of investment funds managed by New York City-based PE firm EagleTree Capital, Moss has a longstanding presence and customer base in mainland Europe, with offices and operations in Germany. In February, the company expanded its operations into Poznań, Poland.
Popp added, “We are delighted to welcome the talented MacroArt team and their clients to Moss and look forward to an exciting future ahead. Our footprint of production facilities in the U.S., Germany, Poland, and now the U.K. ensures we are able to support clients in a consistent and effective way regardless of where their branded experience is.”
Exhibit News Now (ENN) caught up with Popp to find out the inside scoop on the deal. Here’s what we learned.
Deeper Dive: Q&A with Moss President and CEO Jason Popp
How did the deal come about?
First, it began by choosing where we wanted to expand. The U.K. market is important – there are some great corporate brands based in the country, a vibrant live events scene and an active retail and corporate market. Plus, I was very familiar with the exhibit/event ecosystem since I had lived and worked there for many years.
I knew from my previous role running GES EMEA that there were a number of production partners for tension fabric and structures operating in the market, and MacroArt was really the most similar to Moss. Outstanding quality, focus on customer service and placing an importance on operating sustainably. I think this was evidenced most clearly when MacroArt took home several prestigious awards at the 2023 UK Graphics Awards. So that led me to reach out to MacroArt at the end of last year, and we worked on this throughout 2023. It was a very deliberate process, to say the least.
As the process and discussions progressed, we got to know the team and capabilities there, and they got to know us. We all saw what a perfect fit it was — not only from an end market and end client point of view but also from a cultural and values perspective.
Who owned MacroArt?
It was owned by a U.K.-based private equity company and a mix of individual investors and management.
How many employees are at MacroArt? Total employees now at Moss?
There are approximately 100 staff at MacroArt, and the acquisition puts the total employees at Moss at more than 400 now. Our team is based in the U.S., Germany, Poland and now the U.K.
What do your customers need to know about the deal? How does it impact them?
It is great news for our customers in all geographies. First, it allows Moss to serve them seamlessly if or when they do projects in the U.K. We will be able to share best practices across our businesses of like-minded professionals, ensuring that Moss consistently stays at the forefront of R&D or development in our industry. Furthermore, we can optimize our production strategy depending on the location of the event.
What’s the first item on your agenda as you integrate the acquisition?
The first item is to expand the touchpoints between all the teams. We’ve created a “buddy system” to introduce MacroArt staff to their counterparts in the other geographies. We’re also convening the first of many cross-border team meetings in December at our global headquarters to begin sharing best practices.