Resources for mentees
Useful information
Case studies
Construction & property
Consumer products
Creative services
Education & training
Hotels & restaurants
IT & telecoms
Professional services
Renewable energy
Resources for mentors
Other resources
Regional events
Best Practice Toolkit
Paul Comyn, Rockstar Mentor and Southnews PLC

Paul Comyn, Rockstar Mentor and Southnews PLC

Here, Rockstar Mentor, Paul Comyn explains how he bought into a regional newpaper during a management buy in for 3m pounds and helped build it up to a tradesale. It sold 13 years later for 285m pounds.

Paul Comyn came in as the Financial Director of the company following the management buy in. Over a 13 year period it grew from a £3m management buy-in to an exit by a trade sale for £285m. Paul’s involvement was over a wide range of areas:

  • Development of group strategy in all areas of the business. Establishment and development of a strong system of financial reporting and controls, which was capable of handling growth.
  • Acquisition planning and negotiation (executing over 13 successful acquisitions).
  • Post-acquisition re-organisation and management integration.
  • Communication with shareholders and other City relationships.
  • Responsibility for introduction and implementation of corporate governance standards in the group. Handling of relationships with professional advisors, including all legal matters.
  • All major aspects of banking relationships, in particular negotiation of finance for acquisitions.Development of the new media strategy and the group IT systems.

Paul helped the company grow from a small management buy-in to be London’s leading publisher of local newspapers and a, fully listed, well regarded company with a market capitalisation, at its recommended take-over, of £285m. Turnover grew from £15m to £95m and operating losses were transformed into profits of £20m. The shareholder made a profit on exit of £250m.