Concepts Direct catalogs live on

To paraphrase Mark Twain, reports of the demise of Concepts Direct’s five catalog titles have been greatly exaggerated. According to president Phillip Wiland, a November article in the Boulder County (CO) Daily Camera stating that the $51.6 million multititle mailer would shut its doors at the end of the year was incomplete.

The company will close its doors in Longmont, CO, where it has been headquartered for decades, and the name Concepts Direct will cease to exist. But the Linda Anderson, Garfield Stuff, Music Stand, Colorful Characters, and New Bargains gift catalogs are relocating to Ozark, MO, this month under a newly formed parent company, Direct Retailing.

Concepts Direct launched Colorful Characters in September. The title sells licensed merchandise of such well-known characters as Snoopy, Superman, and Betty Boop. At around the same time it introduced Colorful Characters, Concepts Direct sold stationery catalog Colorful Images to Colorado Springs, CO-based competitor Current USA, a division of $1 billion Taylor Corp. After the sale, says Wiland, “our board of directors formed a special committee to review status and determine the best course of action for the remaining business.” Since Colorful Images accounted for more than half of sales, the existing facility was now too large, and operating costs too high. The committee hired an investment bank to valuate the business and determined that “shareholders were best served by a rapid winding down of operations at the current location,” Wiland says.

Members of management offered to buy the remaining titles and other operating assets “at a price above the range of values established by the independent investment bank,” Wiland says. The committee accepted the offer, and the catalogs will begin to mail under the new ownership in February.

Five Concepts Direct employees, including Wiland and chief financial officer Zaid Haddad, formed Direct Retailing. The new entity, which is selling the 60,000-sq.-ft. Concepts Direct headquarters in Longmont, believes that fulfilling products from Missouri will be cheaper. Concepts Direct employed about 300 workers in Colorado.

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Concepts Direct Catalogs Live On

To paraphrase Mark Twain, reports of the demise of Concepts Direct’s five catalog titles have been greatly exaggerated. According to president Phillip Wiland, an article in the Boulder County (CO) “Daily Camera” stating that the $51.6 million mailer would shut its doors at the end of the year was incomplete.

Yes, the company will shut its doors in Longmont, CO, where the company has been headquartered. And “Concepts Direct” will no longer exist. But the Linda Anderson, Garfield Stuff, Music Stand, New Bargains, and Colorful Characters gift catalogs will be relocating to Missouri in January under the auspices of a newly formed parent company, Direct Retailing.

Concepts Direct sold its best-known title, stationery catalog Colorful Images, in September to Colorado Springs, CO-based competitor Current USA, a division of $1 billion conglomerate Taylor Corp. After the sale, says Wiland, “our board of directors formed a special committee to review status and determine the best course of action for the remaining business. Since Colorful Images accounted for over half of company sales, the current facility is too large, and operating costs too high. The special committee engaged an independent investment bank to value the remaining business and determined that, because of high costs, shareholders were best served by a rapid winding down of operations at the current location.” Last year Concepts Direct had sales of $51.6 million.

Members of management offered to buy Concepts Direct’s remaining titles and other operating assets “at a price above the range of values established by the independent investment bank,” Wiland says. The committee accepted the offer, and the catalogs will mail under the new ownership beginning in February.

Concepts Direct launched its newest catalog, Colorful Characters, around the same time it sold Colorful Images. The book sells licensed merchandise of such well-known characters as Snoopy, Superman, and Betty Boop.

Partner Content

3 Critical Components to Achieving the Perfect Order - NetSuite
Explore the 3 critical components to delivering the perfect order.
Streamlining Unified Commerce Complexity - NetSuite
Explore how consolidating multiple systems through a cloud-based commerce platform provides a seamless experience for both you, and your customer.
Build the Foundation for Great Customer Experiences - NetSuite
Understand how consistent, timely, relevant and personalized experiences are enabled by having the right technology foundation in place.
Strategies for Maximizing Mobile Point-of-Sale Technology - NetSuite
Learn the top five innovative ways to utilize your mobile POS technology to drive customer engagement, increase sales and elevate your brand.