Companies floating on the Alternative Investment Market are being forced to invest in annual reports for the first time, creating a boom in corporate design work.
AIM, the Stock Exchange spin- off which opened in June 1995 for companies too small for a full flotation, obliges participants to produce interim and annual reports. The first annual reports must appear by December.
So far nearly 200 firms have floated, and “it seems like there is a new company floating every day. Potentially, there is a huge market out there for designers”, says Cameron Carruthers, director of corporate design consultancy Carruthers Elliott Fine.
The consultancy is currently working on an interim report for newly enlisted company, Whitecross Group, and has designed placing documents for four firms going to the market.
However, “while it is good business, it isn’t big business because the clients are not flush with cash”, cautions FaÃ§ade Design managing director Justin Mould. “But it is worth building up a relationship as some of them will progress to full listings. Designers have to see it as a longer term process,” adds Mould.
New corporate identities are also on the cards for some new recruits to the AIM. FaÃ§ade has just completed a logo and placing document for newly floated Waterfall Holdings (pictured).
“These companies are often an amalgamation [compiled specifically for the flotation] and do not have sophisticated logos to represent the group,” says Mould.