More Group winds up 64-sheets

More Group has decided to axe its 64-sheet sites and turn them all into 48-sheets, a move which has surprised the biggest buyer of this unusual format.

More Group has decided to axe its 64-sheet sites and turn them all

into 48-sheets, a move which has surprised the biggest buyer of this

unusual format.



More is the only company still selling 64-sheets - the other major

contractors phased them out more than six years ago - and has therefore

enjoyed a monopoly in the market for some time. But it has decided to

invest pounds 10 million in rebuilding the 64-sheet sites as ’top

quality’ 48-sheets.



Blade director Malcolm Thomas, who bought around 40 per cent of the

sites last year, said he was surprised by the decision. ’The 64-sheet is

an unusual format and I would have thought it is a worthwhile standalone

product for More,’ he said. ’Our clients loved it and it always seemed

to steal an edge on rates because it wasn’t dragged down into the

48-sheet battle.



’Not that I mind,’ Thomas added. ’More sites in the 48-sheet market

gives me more to negotiate with - I’m just surprised they’ve done

it.’



More Group sales and marketing director Julie France said she understood

that Blade might be disappointed. ’It was a popular format,’ she said,

’and certain clients loved it, particularly Ford. But we have to look at

our overall plant, and we want to be a national 48-sheet provider. Bear

in mind formats go in and out of fashion. You don’t want to be the only

player in a format if demand disappears.’



There are about 600 64-sheet sites. Turning them into 48-sheets will

have a major effect on More’s presence in that market.



Currently, More has less than 15 per cent of the 48-sheet market, but

the rebuilding program will give it nearer to 20 per cent. Maiden will

have the lion’s share with 36 per cent, Decaux around 33 per cent and

Score most of the remaining sites.



France said More would position its 20 per cent at ’the quality end of

the market’.



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