John Brown bolsters business with catalogue buy

John Brown Publishing Group, the parent company of contract publisher John Brown Citrus Publishing, has acquired specialist catalogue publisher Code London.

John Brown Publishing Group, the parent company of contract publisher John Brown Citrus Publishing, has acquired specialist catalogue publisher Code London.

The acquisition is expected to take the group’s projected billings to &£60m in the 2006-2007 financial year.

The acquisition is John Brown Publishing’s first significant one since 2003, when it acquired children’s publisher Act-Two, which has since rebranded as John Brown Junior.

Code London is the UK division of AGA Creative, the New York-based catalogue marketing and design group. Its client list includes John Lewis, Mothercare, Woolworths and Waitrose.

John Brown Citrus publishes magazines for Waitrose, Orange, Disney, Volkswagen and BSkyB. According to the July to December 2004 Audit Bureau of Circulations figures, the number of Sky magazine subscribers exceeded 8 million .

Code chief executive Philip Odom will assume the same role under the new ownership, running Code London as a standalone business within the John Brown Group.

John Brown Publishing Group chief executive Andrew Hirsch says: “Code will enable us to strengthen our retail expertise, build upon our relationships with a number of key clients and provide a real impetus for us to develop catalogue publications in new sectors and different geographic markets.”

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