Management Buy-in for Yorkshire Box Making Firm after Multi-Million Investment

ASC Cartons receives multi-million investment to part fund a management buy-in.

Bradford-based box manufacturer ASC Cartons has received a £2.1million investment from Frontier Development Capital (FDC) to part fund a management buy-in (MBI) of the firm. The MBI will see GIL Investments and Chairman of Sandland Packaging Limited - Robin Welch, take the helm of the bespoke box manufacturer, Celia McKrieth-Deane moves into the role of Commercial Director & Ashley Power joins the board as Operations Director. Both Andrew Woodhead & Karl Wilson remain with the business in advisory roles.

 ASC Cartons was established over 40 years ago and specialises in the creation of high-quality corrugated boxes for a wide range of applications across the UK. The firm operates from a 50,000sqft site and produces bespoke boxes to meet the exact sizing requirements of customers’ needs to reduce costs and waste. Reduced waste and the fact that over 90% of cardboard used in the UK is recycled means that cardboard offers significant environmental benefits over other packaging solutions available. Customers include both large corporate accounts and smaller consumer accounts that ASC is able to service through its website ( that is fully integrated with its modern production facilities – customers who require additional support and more complex packaging are serviced by a team of experienced account managers.

The impact of the Covid pandemic has seen a material shift in shopping habits, with the proportion of sales occurring online estimated to have increased from 30% pre-pandemic to 39%. The shift to on-line shopping has resulted in increased demand for cardboard packaging. The shift in buying habits is anticipated to be maintained and ASC Cartons is well placed to benefit from this.

Robin Welch, chairman commented:

“This MBI starts an exciting new chapter for ASC Cartons and we’re thrilled to be getting involved at such a pivotal time for the business. We are planning to continue developing the business alongside the current management team and hone in on the growing appeal of cardboard as a sustainable packaging option.

“The debt funding provided by Frontier Development Capital helped us to realise our aims and coordinate a smooth deal. We look forward to bringing our combined experience together and help continue to grow and seize the opportunities ahead."

Simon Kelsall, investment director at Frontier Development Capital, said: 

“ASC Cartons has a proud history and strong track record, with the success of its online presence and well-established customer base offering robust platforms for further growth.

 “FDC prides itself on providing flexible debt funding to ambitious mid-market SMEs across the country and supporting this MBI reflects this commitment. We look forward to continuing our partnership with ASC Cartons as it looks to seize upcoming growth opportunities afforded by the changing consumer spending habits.”

FDC supports mid-market SME businesses across the country with debt funding between £1million and £20million.

Advisors that also worked on the transaction were Scofield Sweeny (Legal) & Naylor Wintersgill (Accountancy), as well as Lucy Freeman (Wilkes), Graham Spalding (Lodders) and Pippa Hawkes (BSN).

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