Friday, November 22, 2013

Is someone planning to restart, reopen SP USA’s business?

The rumor-mill is rampant.  

We’ve heard from two different sources, the past two days, that a U.K.-based “group” is planning to restart / reopen some or all of the SP USA operations that were shut down.

Who might that be?

Reprographically-speaking, the three largest reprographics enterprises in the U.K. are 1) SP UK, 2) Hobs Reprographics, and 3) Callprint.  Evidenty, SP UK, apparently in an attempt to distance itself from the SPS “brand”, will shortly be changing its name to the “UDO Group”.  [UDO was the original name of SP UK – “UDO” stands for (or stood for) “United Drawing Office.”]  Or, from a stretch out in left field, maybe the giant U.K. company, Smurfit Kappa, the company that put up the financing to resurrect Reprotechnique in France, is stepping to the plate to resurrect SP USA?  (I seriously doubt that Smurfit Kappa is involved; I'm still trying to figure out why S-K forked over the funds that Reprotecnique needed.)

What might happen?

Anyway, if SP USA Inc is insolvent, and that may well be the case, whoever buys SP USA’s assets may have to complete its purchase transaction by one of two methods:

Method 1 – SP USA goes into Chapter 7, interested party makes a bona fide offer for SP USA’s assets, BK Trustee would have to approve that offer.  I haven’t seen any Chapter 7 (or otherwise) filing from SP USA Inc.

Method 2 – SP USA’s assets sold via a “Bulk Sale of Assets” transaction, according the regs/rules of the Uniform Commercial Code.  For this type of transaction to happen, SP USA creditors would have to receive prior notice of the contemplated Bulk Sale transaction, and, if the old rules still apply, there would be a 10-day notice period to voice objections.  The notice would have to explain, in detail, the contemplated transaction and give an estimate of how much vendors are going to end up with.  (It’s my understanding that this is the method that ABC Imaging employed, years ago, when it purchased the assets of Topel Imaging, after Topel Imaging got into financial trouble.)  (Blain Topel is a VP at ABC Imaging, and he is an outstanding, hard-working, dedicated young man.)

For better information – or, I should say, accurate information – consult your attorney!


Visit this link for more information about “Bulk Sale” transactions:


  1. UDO stood for Universal Drawing Office and run by Terry Rutter the best in the business
    Bloggs Jon

  2. I worked for GAF (Great Britain) Ltd. We were owned by GAF in the USA. We became the market leader in the UK for Reprographic and Drawing Office supplies. In spite of that we were taken over by UDO in 1987 with some understandable resentment on the part of the GAF hierarchy. I worked for UDO until 1992 having been made redundant. UDO were a demanding company, but very democratic. Even Terry Rutter ate lunch in the canteen.

  3. Actually, I lie. GAF were taken over by Aarque Systems, another American company. UDO bought out Aarque and not GAF