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Tag Archives | Advantus

Advantus Acquires McGill Inc.

The latest round of consolidation in the scrapbook industry is continuing this week with the announcement that Advantus has acquired “substantially all of the assets” of punch and office supply manufacturer McGill, Inc.

According to the announcement, McGill products will start shipping from Advantus’s headquarters in Jacksonville, Florida before the end of the month.

“We look forward to manufacturing and distributing the McGill products and building on the good name of McGill, Inc., with its reputation for quality products,” said Kevin Carpenter, President of Advantus.

“We at McGill are excited about the acquisition by Advantus Corp. This will be great for all of our customers and allow the McGill product lines to grow in the office products and craft markets,” said Wayne Schwartzman, President of McGill, Inc. Continue Reading →

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Advantus to Discontinue Cropper Hopper License

Advantus has announced that they intend to discontinue the use of the Cropper Hopper brand when their license to use it expires in December 2013.

After what the company describes as “a lengthy transition period that will extend into at least mid-2014,” Advantus will no longer represent the Cropper Hopper brand. The brand will revert back to the control of Cropper Hopper founder Scott Smith, from whom they’ve licensed the name for the past 10 years.

According to the announcement, Cropper Hopper items may continue to be ordered as usual by the company’s customers, and there will be no interruption in customer service during the branding transition. The company says it plans to continue to continue carrying “the majority” of the products that are currently in the Cropper Hopper line, under a rebranding that will be launched at the Craft & Hobby Association 2014 show in January.

“We know Scott will continue to do great things in the industry, and we wish him all the best.  We appreciate our customers’ continued support of our product lines and look forward to introducing our new storage brand at the CHA show”, said Kevin Carpenter, President of Advantus.

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Advantus Buys Cosmo Cricket

Advantus Corp. announced yesterday that they have acquired Cosmo Cricket from owners Eric & Julie Comstock and Lindsay Moore.

Cosmo Cricket was founded by artists Eric & Julie Comstock in 2006. Moore joined the company a short time later, taking charge of its sales operations. The company is known for its bright, graphic designs with a retro influence, a departure from Advantus’s current design portfolio.

Among its diverse portfolio of brands, Jacksonville, Florida-based Advantus is the parent company of craft lines Tim Holtz idea-ology, Cropper Hopper, and Sulyn. Their Vituri tote brand is also familiar to many crafters by its former name of All My Memories. The company has embarked on many crafts ventures in recent years – it also briefly had the Margie Romney-Aslett signature line The Girls Paperie in 2010-2011, and was also the home of Heidi Swapp’s now-defunct signature line for several years. Advantus has only been involved in the craft industry since 2004, but the company has been in existence since 1913.

This addition will be a great compliment to our existing craft and hobby brands,” said Kevin Carpenter, President of Advantus Corp. “We have always admired Cosmo Cricket’s design and commitment to their customers and we look forward to developing new products with Julie and Eric.”

Julie Comstock said, “The three of us are super  excited to partner with Advantus. We can’t wait to work with their talented staff so that we can focus on what we’re best at – creating more products for our customers to love.”

Cosmo Cricket’s operations will be moving from Utah to Advantus headquarters in Jacksonville, Florida in early September. The Comstocks and Lindsay Moore will remain with Cosmo Cricket as part of its Advantus operations.

All wholesale orders and inquiries for Cosmo Cricket can be directed to Advantus Customer Satisfaction by email to crafts@advantus.com or by calling (904) 482-0092.

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Tim Holtz Debuts “District Market” At National Stationery Show

Tim Holtz debuted a new addition to his idea-ology line from Advantus on Monday at the National Stationery Show in New York.

The new line, named “District Market” was described by Holtz on his blog as “finished products for the stationery, home decor and gift market.” Fans of the existing Tim Holtz lines will be pleased – the designs of the new products draw from existing artwork in his collection, placing those designs on items such as notecards and tote bags.

Photo Courtesy of Megan Hoeppner of Creating Keepsakes Magazine

Despite the description of the products as being finished goods, several items in this line show promise to be cross-marketed to the crafts market as the basis of projects, especially the notecards, tissue paper, and burlap panels.

Megan Hoeppner, Creative Editor of Creating Keepsakes Magazine, saw the products at their debut in New York:

…the Tim Holtz booth was an impressive stop on my Nat’l Stationery Show journey. He was clearly excited about his new products, which he should be. He introduced a number of products that are meant to bridge the gap between traditional stationery and scrapbooking/paper crafting. He has stunning journals that would be great as is, or you can use them as a canvases from which to work, adding your own embellishments and details. In addition to the journals, he has cards, burlap panels, and AMAZING washi-paper tissue, which can all work as stand-alone items or as creative foundations.

Being able to cross-market a SKU to two markets has a variety of advantages, from being able to serve two markets while carrying less inventory, to maximizing return on investment in the product by having a wider possible customer base for it.

Four assortments of 4″ x 6″ notecards are available, with 4 designs per package. Two of the notecard sets are seasonal designs. Six 12″ x 12″ burlap panels are available. Three of the designs are from the “Crowded Attic” collection of papers, and three from the “Lost & Found” collection. The tissue paper comes in two designs – an antique text print called “terminology” and a music print.

Photo Courtesy of Megan Hoeppner of Creating Keepsakes Magazine

Tim Holtz’s District Market collection will begin shipping from Advantus in early September.

[Many thanks to Creative Editor Megan Hoeppner of Creating Keepsakes Magazine for her contributions to this story.]

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Margie Romney-Aslett Departs Advantus, The Girls Paperie; Announces New Venture

Barely 15 months after the brand was unveiled, Advantus announced early today that, at her request, it has released Margie Romney-Aslett from her contract to design The Girls Paperie product line for them.

The Girls Paperie debuted for Advantus at CHA Winter 2010. Romney-Aslett’s vintage chic designs made the brand’s seven lines a breakout success with strong showings at each CHA show.

The company says it has plenty of inventory of the brand’s existing lines, and is working with Romney-Aslett and its customers to ensure what it calls “an orderly wind down of the line.” The company will continue to take and ship orders for The Girls Paperie until it sells out its existing inventory.

“Advantus is sad to lose this product line; we felt it had great potential and the sales continued to grow. However, Margie requested to end her arrangement with Advantus due to matters unrelated to the arrangement, and we agreed to do this for her. We are working with Margie to ensure an orderly wind down of the line and apologize for the inconvenience to our customers,” said Kevin Carpenter, President of Advantus, in explaining the reason behind the ending of the relationship.

Romney-Aslett also had positive things to say about the relationship: “I loved my time at Advantus. The people that I worked with there were amazing. This was a very hard decision for me but one I felt like for me and my family is the right thing to do.”

Items from The Girls Paperie are currently in stock at Scrapbook.comTwo Peas In A Bucket, and Simon Says Stamp (among other stores) for consumers who’d like to stock up before the lines disappear.

Later in the day today, Romney-Aslett announced on her blog that she will be at CHA Summer 2011 with an as-yet-unnamed brand new company that she is involved in the founding of. Scrapbook Update has been told that Romney-Aslett will be debuting 8 new paper lines at the show.

In addition to her paper lines, Romney-Aslett also co-owns The Girls Loft kit club with her daughters, Megan and Brooke.

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