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Osborne Clarke advises management team of Wonderbly on an acquisition by Graphite Capital


Written on 5 August 2021

International legal practice Osborne Clarke has advised the management team of Wonderbly, the world’s leading publishing platform for personalised children’s books, on their investment in a new entity established by Graphite Capital, a leading UK mid-market private equity specialist, as part of Graphite’s acquisition of Wonderbly.

As a digital, direct-to-consumer publisher, Wonderbly sells its books in more than 150 countries, with international sales accounting for over 85 per cent of its revenues. The company sold more than one million books in 2020 and, in May this year, won ‘Children’s Publisher of the Year’ at the British Book Awards.

At the heart of Wonderbly’s success and growth is its unique operating model – a fully integrated approach to creating, selling, marketing and manufacturing its books. The business has developed proprietary software that enables it to render personalised images and manage orders from customers across the world with short delivery times. This is complemented by a worldwide network of on-demand printers, creating a scalable global model with no inventory.

The company is also in the early stages of using its technology to develop and market personalised products for blue-chip third-party clients, including Warner Bros. and Universal. Wonderbly’s technology integrates with its clients’ systems, allowing them to market products through their own websites without inventory risk.

Today, Wonderbly produces a range of 44 personalised children’s books. Revenue has grown by more than 20 per cent per annum over the past three years to over £30 million. Wonderbly operates in a large and fast-growing sector. The global personalised gifting market is worth £19 billion and is growing at 9 per cent annually. The market for personalised children’s books is also growing rapidly, with consumers increasingly seeking unique educational gifts for children.

The Osborne Clarke team was comprised of Partners Tom Try and Pippa Byrne, Senior Associate Leanne Maund, Associates Bethany Shingfield and Harshna Patel from the Corporate team and Senior Associate Lara Flynn from the Employment team.

Osborne Clarke has a market-leading international private equity practice and is widely recognized as a leading European law firm for companies operating in the technology, media and telecoms sector, working with global businesses to fast-growth start-ups and market challengers.

Evolving and disruptive technologies are changing how businesses operate, compete and evolve, creating extraordinary, transformative opportunities. Osborne Clarke is at the forefront of advising on ground-breaking transformations. Visit our Digital Transformation pages to find out more.