Forward Dimension Capital has announced the successful acquisition of MedicAnimal, the online pet healthcare retailer. Under the terms of the agreement, Forward Dimension Capital has acquired 100% of the company.
Founded by Ivan Retzignac and Andrew Bucher, MedicAnimal is an online retailer of veterinary products and pet supplies, offering a comprehensive catalogue of pet products that range from prescription medicines to premium quality pet foods and accessories.
Forward Dimension Capital’s acquisition comes at the end of a period of significant growth for MedicAnimal. Over the last few years it acquired a number of competitors, as well as being listed 11th in the Top 100 Tech Track of the Sunday Times, ranking 15th in the Deloitte UK Technology Fast 50, and featuring in the Red Herring Top 100 Companies, among other accolades.
Partnering with the wider management team, Forward Dimension Capital will work collaboratively with MedicAnimal to continue to grow the business and expand its customer base across the UK and Europe. In addition, David Rigby will join the board as Executive Chairman. David is a partner at Forward Dimension Capital where he is an active member of a number of Boards including as Chairman of Forward3D, Rare Television and Factory Media. He has extensive experience of working with businesses at all stages of their development.
Ivan Retzignac, of MedicAnimal, commented: “We are delighted to have the support of Forward Dimension Capital as we enter the next phase of our development. They have a strong track record of working with businesses that have undergone significant growth and we are looking forward to working collaboratively with David and his team as we continue to develop MedicAnimal’s proposition, placing our customers at the centre of everything we do.”
David Rigby, of Forward Dimension Capital, commented: “We are very excited about working with MedicAnimal. The business has grown rapidly over the last few years to become a major player in the online pet healthcare market, and the management and founders have built a business with loyal customers, a great team and strong brand awareness. We plan to build on this and focus the business on delivering excellence in all that it does, as well as continuing to increase awareness of MedicAnimal among consumers. MedicAnimal is a great story and one we want to enhance by bringing additional investment and skills to the table.”
Forward Dimension Capital focuses primarily on small to medium sized UK business companies that have achieved profitability and are looking to develop their businesses further to take advantage of growth opportunities. Its successful heritage has focused on the digital consumer and internet industries.
Pet Trade Xtra brings you its 150th issue
Pet Trade Xtra celebrates its 150th issue today and we would like to thank all of our subscribers and sponsors who have supported us over the past three years...
Huge new warehouse and HQ for Wagg Foods
Yorkshire-based Wagg Foods is pressing ahead with ambitious plans to double the size of the business as they start digging, to build a new 100,000 sq ft, state-of-the-art distribution centre and offices near to its current headquarters, outside Thirsk...
Yorkshire-based Wagg Foods is pressing ahead with ambitious plans to double the size of the business as they start digging, to build a new 100,000 sq ft, state-of-the-art distribution centre and offices near to its current headquarters, outside Thirsk.
The new building will enable Wagg to stay ahead of the game, ensuring consistent supply to all their customers and to satisfy the growing demand for its ranges of pet food which has seen Wagg become the UK’s number one dry dog food* and Harringtons remain as the fastest growing dry pet food brand**.
Pictured are Bill Page (left), founder of Wagg, and George Page, Operations Director. Bill says “This is an exciting time for Wagg. We’re pleased to be able to continue to invest locally and expand our capabilities due to ongoing sales growth across the Wagg and Harringtons brands, both in the UK and globally."
George goes on to say: “Space is now at a premium at our two Yorkshire factories, having recently added more new packing lines but this distribution centre will erase that pressure and it allows us to continue delivering the great value food pet owners enjoy as well as provide the platform for the next phase of our growth plans.”
The new facility will be up and running for summer 2016.
Visitors to PATS Telford can expect a busy and exciting show as all exhibitor stands at the two-day event have now been sold.
Telford International Centre, the new home for PATS in September, will be packed with stands showcasing new products. And with the ‘Sold Out’ signs being posted already, there will be lots to see and talk about with a record number of over 180 exhibitors.
As well as meeting up with a long list of PATS regulars, visitors will be greeted by a host of new faces when the show takes place on Sunday, September 27, and Monday, September 28, 2015.
A growing number of companies are choosing to exhibit for the first time as they see PATS as the perfect opportunity to showcase their products to retailers and overseas distributors.
And more international exhibitors are also using PATS as a platform to launch their products on to the UK market.
With so many exciting plans for 2015 it could easily be a record-breaking year for attendance numbers.
“The UK pet trade has got behind PATS Telford in a big way,” said organiser Annie Foord. “We’ve got a record number of companies exhibiting and they’re really excited about unveiling their plans to UK retailers and international buyers. It promises to be a fantastic event for everyone involved.”
One of the show’s most popular features is the New Product Showcase, which sees an increasing numbers of entries each year. Early indications suggest the trend will continue at Telford, and as a result the Showcase will have a huge presence at the exhibition.
All entries in the Showcase will be judged by a panel of retailer judges for the New Product Awards on the first morning of the show. The results will be known and highlighted throughout the exhibition hall for the rest of the event.
Winning an award in the PATS New Product Showcase can be the launch pad to huge sales. That’s according to companies whose new products have been recognised at previous exhibitions.
Irish company Christies Global have won an award at three consecutive PATS shows and their marketing manager Lindy Harper knows the importance of such an accolade.
“Christies Global has always prided itself in bringing innovative products to the grooming market and these awards recognise this work,” said Lindy. “Given the high standard of competition in the market, we feel truly honoured to have won three consecutive awards.”
Collarways is another company to recognise the prestige of a New Product Award, having won one with the Zogoflex Toppl accessory at PATS Sandown in March. “Winning the award had an instant impact for both the winning product and for interest in Collarways. We were incredibly busy at the show and have seen a great increase in sales and interest in the brand as a result,” said Katie Goldsmith.
As well as seeing an unrivalled array of new pet products and speaking to top suppliers and manufacturers, visitors will also be able to witness demonstrations from the country’s leading dog groomers and listen to talks from prominent industry figures.
Parking is free at the Telford International Centre, and everyone will receive free tea and coffee, and a free show catalogue. Visitors will also be able to relax and chat further with exhibitors at a free drinks reception once the show closes on Day One.
To register for free entry to the show and to view the full list of exhibitors visit www.patshow.co.uk
Raw and natural feeding expert Natures Menu has unveiled a new look range of point of sale items which aims to provide retailers with improved merchandising for their natural pet food sections.
Included in the range are the new vision freezers which combine a chest freezer with an eye catching overhead display unit, all branded in Natures Menu’s fresh new graphics and educational foamex wall art.
Some of the first stores to benefit from these new materials are Scampers in Soham (above) and Rooke’s Pet Products in Spalding (below).
Jason Rooke, managing director of Rooke’s, comments: “As a result of an increase in demand for raw pet food, we made the decision to invest in additional freezers stocking Natures Menu.
"Natures Menu’s new chest and overhead combination freezers have made great use of the space and really grab the attention of the shopper.
"Natures Menu supported us with a series of new POS items including signage promoting the benefits of feeding a raw diet.
"We’re delighted with how the section now looks as it provides our customers with more choice and a more informative experience.
"We’re using the freezers to display Natures Menu entire range but with a push on their complete and balanced meals which continue to grow in popularity”.
Natures Menu marketing manager Emily Cannon, who headed up the project, spoke about the investment, stating: "We’ve created a range of consumer focused POS materials that aim to inform on the benefits of a raw diet and the convenience of our products.
"So many of our valued retailers have put a great amount of effort into converting their customers to raw and we wanted to show our thanks by providing merchandising that aims to drive footfall towards our freezers and their natural feeding section”.
To request a trade pack and details of how to order items from the new range contact your Natures Menu representative or call 0800 0183770.
FishScience has launched its new formula fish foods, which are rich in Insect Meal.
"Insect meal is a fantastic new ingredient that we are using in the FishScience range of foods to replace much of the fish based ingredients that are traditionally used," explained FishScience founder Dr David Pool.
"Most of the fish we keep in aquaria are not fish eaters and yet the foods we give them are based on fish meal."
The use of insect meal that is cultured in Europe brings a number of benefits both to the fish and to the environment:
It is eagerly consumed by the fish – after all it is what they would naturally consume in the wild.
It contains Inulin, a natural probiotic product that helps digestion and reduces waste.
And importantly, it reduces the use of fish meal which is taken from the sea, so providing an environmentally friendly and sustainable source of proteins.
"The consumer research we have undertaken has been outstanding," continued Dr Pool. "Fishkeepers instantly recognise the importance of feeding their fish on the insect based diet they would eat in the wild."
All of the FishScience foods still contain natural ingredients such as paprika, shrimp, and Spirulina algae to enhance the natural colour of the fish, together with Garlic, Beta Glucans and omega oils to support the immune system and ensure the fish remain as healthy as possible.
The new range of FishScience foods will be launched on Stand F21 at AQUA2015, or visit www.fishscience.co.uk for more details of this exiting new range of foods.
Ruffwear is looking to donate a number of dog collars to different animal charities and shelters.
"Ruffwear are looking to make a charitable donation of Top Rope Collars to a number of charities and dog shelters in need. If you know a suitable charity, we would love to hear from you," said Jade Lambourne, marketing manager for the Accapi Group.
Interested charities can contact Jade by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Ceva extends its popular LOGIC range
Ceva Animal Health has extended its popular LOGIC range with the launch of the new LOGIC Ease range of palatable veterinary strength supplements for dogs and cats...
Ceva Animal Health has extended its popular LOGIC® range with the launch of the new LOGIC® Ease range of palatable veterinary strength supplements for dogs and cats.
The innovative, tasty ‘soft chew’ LOGIC supplements contain high quality active ingredients, which have been specifically developed to ensure the high standards that owners expect for their pets. These supplements allow owners to ‘treat’ their pets, knowing they are contributing to the health of their pet and reducing the desire to give unhealthy snacks.
LOGIC® EaseFlex is a high quality super tasty joint supplement specially formulated to help soothe active joints and support long-term mobility. The high quality ingredients in LOGIC EaseFlex include glucosamine HCL, a type of naturally occurring amino sugar that plays an important role in the formation of healthy joint cartilage; chondroitin, a natural component which helps to maintain the elasticity of the joint cartilage and slow down its destruction by enzymes and green lipped mussel, a high quality source of omega-3 fatty acids known to support and maintain joint function.
LOGIC EaseFlex should be given daily as a treat and comes in packs of 28 beef flavour, highly palatable soft chews, which provide up to eight weeks’ supply for a dog weighing up to 25kg.
LOGIC® EaseLife is a super tasty supplement for senior dogs that has been specifically developed with a combination of essential nutrients to help support mobility, coat condition, mind vitality and alertness in senior dogs.
The high quality ingredients include glucosamine HCL, a type of naturally occurring amino sugar which plays an important role in the formation of healthy joint cartilage; MSM (methylsulfonylmethane), a source of naturally occurring sulphur required as a building block in cartilage which plays a vital role in joint health; omega-3 (DHA and EPA) which are necessary components of cells helping to support the immune system and vitality and vitamin E, a natural antioxidant which helps minimise damage and neutralise free radicals.
LOGIC EaseLife should be given daily as a treat and comes in packs of 28 beef flavoured highly palatable soft chews, which provide up to eight weeks’ supply for a dog weighing up to 25kg.
LOGIC® EaseDerm is a super tasty skin and coat supplement that has been developed with a high concentration of omega-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA) to add moisture to dry, irritated skin and help maintain a healthy, shiny coat.
The high quality ingredients in LOGIC EaseDerm include omega 3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA), essential fatty acids that are necessary components of cell membranes. EPA and DHA help support a healthy skin and provide a healthy, glossy coat.
LOGIC EaseDerm should be given daily as a treat and comes in packs of 28 tuna flavoured soft chews, which provide up to eight weeks’ supply for a dog weighing up to 25kg.
LOGIC® EaseFlex is a super tasty joint supplement that has been specifically designed with concentrated ingredients to help soothe stiff joints and promote mobility in cats.
The high quality ingredients in LOGIC EaseFlex include glucosamine HCL, a type of naturally occurring amino sugar which plays an important role in the formation of healthy joint cartilage; chondroitin, a natural component which helps to maintain the elasticity of the joint cartilage and slow down its destruction by enzymes and MSM (methylsulfonylmethane), a source of naturally occurring sulphur required as a building block in cartilage which plays a vital role in joint movement.
LOGIC EaseFlex should be given daily as a treat and is available in packs of 28 tuna flavoured soft-chews for four weeks’ supply.
LOGIC® EaseBall contains natural fish oils to lubricate the digestive tract and enhance the passage of fur through the gut. This reduces the occurrence of hairballs and can contribute to a healthy, shiny coat.
For reduction of hairballs, feed one super tasty chew per day. To assist in removal of existing hairballs, feed up to four chews daily until resolved. LOGIC EaseBall is available in packs of 28 salmon flavoured soft chews.
“The new LOGIC supplements will provide retailers with an extensive range of veterinary strength supplements that are so tasty that they can be given as treats,” comments Abi Busk, retail business unit manager at Ceva Animal Health.
For further information on the LOGIC range which also includes LOGIC® Oral Hygiene Gel, LOGIC® Orozyme Dental Chews and LOGIC® Diar-Stop™ oral paste, please contact your wholesaler, call Ceva on 01494 781510, email email@example.com or visit http://www.logicforpets.co.uk.
Dougal, the dog from television's 'The Magic Roundabout', has beaten the Invisible Man in an unusual horticultural competition.
Each year Suffolk seedsman Mr Fothergill's throws down a challenge to its staff which culminates at the company's open day for the gardening press in mid August.
This year (2015) they were invited to make scarecrows, which were positioned around the seed firm's Newmarket trial ground. As garden writers and broadcasters inspected the new flowers and vegetables, they were asked to vote for their favourite scarecrow.
When the votes were counted, the dog from the 1960s programme, and the work of Laura Oakes and Katherine Watt from Mr Fothergill's mail order division, was declared the winner.
In second place was The Invisible Man, created by the trial ground team of Carol Parsons, Brian Talman and Todor Paskalev, with commercial director Tim Jeffries' pirate in third. It is rumoured the pirate may also have been the work of children from a Hertfordshire primary school.
Job satisfaction and a fair salary are more important than a fancy job title, according to pet industry recruitment expert Lynda Ward.
Lynda, founder of Pet Trade Solutions, says: “When I was employed in sales and marketing roles in the pet industry I simply wanted job satisfaction and a fair salary, but in today’s market there is often an expectation of a ratio between salary and job title.
"Employers have differing ideas and historical role models. In most cases Sales Representatives, Area Sales Managers, Territory Managers and Regional Managers are doing the same job – representing the company and building sales within a designated territory.
"When it comes to the Sales Manager title things become even more complicated. In some cases a Sales Manager may be managing an area in just the same way as a Territory Manager, whilst others have overall responsibility for the whole of the company’s distribution plus for the management of other sales people and input into or control of overall sales and even marketing strategy.
"National Sales Manager and Salesforce Manager should be clearer definitions yet the former can simply mean that they are the sole sales employee and the latter may manage as many as 10 people or as few as 3 people and may or may not also have their own territory to take care of.”
So does the name of the role really make a difference?
Lynda says: “No, in my experience of recruiting for the pet industry over the last 15 years, what makes the difference is the value that individual employers put on the role, the employee and also what they are willing or able to pay.”
Lynda is always happy to personally advise on any aspects of recruitment and marketing strategy and can be contacted on 07946 743784 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
High street chain Superdrug, which currently sells pet products online, is set to offer the same range to instore customers.
The trial will take place in 200 stores throughout the UK and the product range will include treats, chew toys and grooming items.
Campaigners in Scotland hope a petition calling for greater legal protection for pet rabbits will get a second hearing in Holyrood next month.
Rabbits Require Rights Scotland's 2,044-name petition was first discussed by MSPs earlier this year.
It calls for rabbits to be given the same protection as cats and dogs as well as regulations on breeding and the minimum size of housing.
Earlier this month, it emerged hundreds of pet rabbits have been abandoned.
The Scottish SPCA said it rescued 728 rabbits in 2014 and had taken 550 into care so far this year.
Rabbits Require Rights Scotland described rabbits as the "UK's most neglected pet."
A spokeswoman said: "As the law currently stands there are no enforceable welfare protection available to rabbits.
"They are too easily sold and too easily discarded. For want of a better word, they are sold like sweeties."
The spokeswoman added: "We will return to parliament for the second hearing of our petition sometime in September or October when the new session dates are announced.
"We've had some good feedback from other welfare bodies in support of our aims, so it is hoped that some level of the improvements we have called for will be addressed."
Leading vet charity PDSA is launching new BeDogSafe workshops which, thanks to £550,00 funding from players of the People’s Postcode Lottery, will be available free of charge from September 2015 for schools and community groups.
PDSA has reached over 150,000 children through its workshops between 2010-14, and this new dog safety element has been developed in response to growing concerns about the increase in dog bite incidents involving children. Sadly, children under nine are more likely to be admitted to hospital due to dog injuries than any other age group.*
PDSA’s Education Programme Manager, Rachel Sutherland, said: “Dog bites are still seen far too frequently and sadly this can have horrific, sometimes even fatal, consequences. At PDSA we believe that prevention is vital and we are committed to tackling this issue head on.
“In addition to educating dog owners, we want to help children to recognise the subtle body language that can precede a bite incident and understand how to react appropriately.”
The workshops will be delivered by PDSA’s team of Community & Education Veterinary Nurses (CEVNs) – six specially-trained staff who travel the length and breadth of the country sharing their expertise, within both schools and communities. The BeDogSafe sessions will cover understanding dogs’ body language, respecting dogs’ space, key dos and don’ts around dogs, and how children can protect themselves if they are scared by a dog’s behaviour.
Rachel added: “Children are the pet owners of the future; by helping them to better understand animals’ welfare needs we can turn their affection into positive action, improving the lives of generations of pets to come.”
In addition to its education programme, PDSA also promotes responsible pet ownership and works with owners to help raise awareness about the importance of proper socialisation and training. Socialisation is the process of gradually introducing puppies to everyday sights and sounds from a very early age which, when done correctly, can prevent fears from developing. Fear can often be a cause of problem behaviour and aggression in later life.
Rachel concluded: “PDSA believes that every pet deserves a happy, healthy life and that education is a vital component in this mission. Any dog, whatever its size or breed, has the potential to cause harm. We would advise anyone who is concerned about their pet’s behaviour to contact their vet for advice in the first instance. With the correct approach and professional assistance most behavioural problems can be overcome.”
Teachers and community leaders can book a workshop by contacting PDSA on 0800 917 2509, emailing email@example.com or going online at www.pdsa.org.uk/education.
Special teaching resource packs are also available enabling people to run their own Pet Club, a fun and interactive out of school club. The packs comprise three progressive levels of Bronze, Silver and Gold targeting children aged between 5 and12, and cover all aspects of learning about and caring for animals, including sections on dog safety.
Work has started on a new retail park in Darlington, which will include a Jolleys Pet Store.
Developers behind the four-acre Darlington North, which is almost fully let, said it will create 150 jobs and be open by spring next year.
The park is being built on Albert Road, next to its junction with North Road and Whessoe Road. As well as Jolleys, it will include Aldi, Poundland and Iceland, together with a KFC Drive Thru restaurant, Card Factory and a Barnados store.
Andrew Duncan, managing director of developers Opus North, said: “It is tremendous news that work has now started on site at Darlington North. The park will revitalise an important area of the town and provide a very attractive retail offering.
“Meanwhile the sale of Darlington North is a massive endorsement of Darlington as a retail location. We have worked hard, from assembling the land which was under different ownerships, to securing a raft of very popular and successful retail occupiers, so this sale is a satisfying conclusion.”
“We have also co-operated closely and successfully with planners at Darlington Borough Council. This is a very exciting development for the town of Darlington, creating jobs and boosting the economy.”
Opus North is funded by Palmer Capital, the London-based private equity real estate investment management company.
Councillor Bill Dixon, Leader of Darlington Borough Council said: "It’s fantastic to see another developer putting their faith in Darlington, proving it’s a town worth investing in. I’m confident that this will be another popular destination for shoppers from both inside and outside of the borough."
Fire fighters had to rescue a panicked pet owner after he got stuck up a tree trying to rescue his pet PARROT.
Crews were scrambled to Green Lane in Hindley Green, Wigan, at around 2pm on Tuesday after the bizarre report of a man being unable to get down from the tree.
When they arrived, they found the 28-year-old had been trying to catch his pet parrot and was unable to climb back down.
Firefighters used a ladder to rescue the man - and his bird.
Both are understood to have escaped the ordeal uninjured.
Fortunately, the parrot did not require tweetment.
It’s not friends and family we miss most when we’re away, the comfort of our own bed and much loved pets are what we pine for according to a survey of 1000 travellers by ICE – International Currency Exchange, the leading travel money provider.
ICE asked travellers to reveal the top five items they miss most on holiday and the essentials they can’t travel without.
Men miss their mattress marginally more than women according to the survey with 37% of male respondents saying they missed this the most compared to 34% of women.
Pets come next with 18% of women putting their four legged friends top of the list compared to 12% of men. This was followed by family and friends then a decent cup of tea.
Police are warning animal lovers to be on their guard if they buy pets that are advertised for sale via popular online auction websites.
Action Fraud, the national fraud and cyber crime reporting centre, says it has noticed a rise in reports of people falling for internet scams involving the sale of pets, particularly puppies.
The fraudsters will place an advert of the pet for sale, claiming to have recently moved abroad and that they need to rehome the animal.
Once a sale is agreed and payment is made, usually by money transfer or bank transfer, the pet does not materialise.
The fraudster will usually ask for further advanced payments for courier charges, shipping fees or vet bills.
Police are offering the following advice to consumers:
Stay within the auction site’s guidelines. Be wary of paying fees via a money service bureau, such as MoneyGram and Western Union.
Consider conducting research on other information provided by the seller; for example, a mobile phone number or email address used by the seller could alert you to any negative information associated with this number online.
Request details of the courier company being used and conduct enquiries regarding the company.
Agree a suitable time to meet face to face to agree the purchase.
Be wary. If you think the purchase price is too good to be true, then this is probably an indication that it is.
If you believe that you have been a victim of a fraud involving the sale of a pet, you can report it online at www.actionfraud.police.uk/report_fraud or by telephone on 0300 123 2040.