Stumps Celebrates Its Fantastic Purchase

On April 23, party and prom supplies cataloger Stumps acquired upscale gifts cataloger Celebration Fantastic. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The acquisition is expected to round out Stumps’s selling season. As a holiday-focused gifts book, Celebration Fantastic has its peak season during the third and fourth quarters of the year; Stumps does the bulk of its business in the first two quarters. What’s more, “the combination of the two companies bring opportunities for cross-promotion across both customer bases, especially in the consumer party business,” says Stumps president Shep Moyle.

Stumps plans to move the operations of San Francisco-based Celebration Fantastic to its 200,000-sq.-ft.-distribution center in South Whitley, IN. Celebration Fantastic had been outsourcing all of its fulfillment, customer service, and catalog creative. “Our ability to bring fulfillment, call center, and creative functions inhouse will leverage our current operations and lower costs,” Moyle says.

Stumps mails nine catalogs, including the 96-page consumer title Shindigz by Stumps and the 584-page Stumps Prom & Party, which targets schools and organizations. Other catalogs are aimed at hospitality businesses, such as cruise ships and wedding planners. Stumps’s consumer buyers are similar to Celebration Fantastic’s customers, Moyle says, who are upscale “soccer moms,” ages 25-55.

Originally titled The Wedding Fantastic, Celebration Fantastic was founded in 1990 by Kathleen Mahoney, who ran the company with her husband, Ozzie Ayscue. “Celebration Fantastic has an outstanding and unmatched merchandising approach with a unique product mix and a strong orientation toward exclusive products,” says Moyle. To maintain the strength of the catalog, Stumps has hired several key Celebration Fantastic employees, as well as retained the services of Mahoney.

Stumps hopes to find more suitable companies to join its party. “We will continue to explore new opportunities for the business that leverage our strengths,” Moyle says, which could include making additional acquisitions.

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