The prospect of going ‘Back to School’ might be inducing teardrops and tantrums amongst youngsters but for a historic brand synonymous with their rucksacks, the first bell can’t ring quickly enough.
Helix Oxford’s iconic pencil tins have been an omnipresent sight in classrooms for more than 125 years, but after being on the brink of extinction just two years ago, it has studied hard to finally bounce back.
In 2012, the prospect of Helix Oxford accessories disappearing from classrooms forever was very real having made heavy losses, coupled with a failure to adapt to an ever-changing stationery market.
However, its biggest competitor and fierce rival Maped, based in France, agreed to buy the ailing British brand in an 11th hour rescue package, thus steering the Helix Oxford brand back into calmer waters.
The industry’s answer to ‘Entente Cordiale’ has reinvigorated Helix and Helix Oxford and the ranges are now fully complemented by Maped and Maped Office, all operating under the Helix Trading Ltd banner.
Maped’s influence has been huge, with its innovative outlook and attention to detail paving the way to better times.
Adrian added: “Maped develops between 50 and 100 new products each year and are able to react to the marketplace quickly. Maped’s influence has already been huge.”
Maped’s global reputation has developed from the quality of the products they offer, which is at the core of the Helix brands also.
Helix Oxford products are already stocked in national retailers and independent stationers up and down the country, suggesting that a great deal of homework has already been done.
Adrian is looking ahead, stating: “This year is all about preparing for growth. As we move further into a digitised world, the demand for traditional stationery items will become less. We know this.
“But people will always want and desire stationery. Being part of a bigger company means we won’t stop developing to meet their needs.
“We want to be number one or a credible number two in every category we serve and this includes Helix Oxford. After some difficult times in 2012, we feel that we are well on the road to achieving this.”
With Helix Trading Ltd now offering a choice of three of the world’s most recognised educational brands they are enjoying a very busy ‘Back To School’ and the famous and much loved Helix Oxford maths set still has a permanent place in millions of pupils school bags worldwide today.
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