Mark and Pat Goddard founded Spartan Press Music Publishers Ltd in April 1990. Spartan Press now also owns a number of subsidiary publishers including Phylloscopus Publications, Masterclass Music, Jot-a-note and European Music Archive. Spartan Press Retail Ltd was also founded by Mark and Pat in 2002 and incorporates Fuller Music as well as stock from 'Wood Wind and Reed', 'Brian Jordan Music', 'Mostyn Music' and 'St. Alban's Music Centre'.
After nearly three decades, Mark and Pat are looking to the future of this successful organization, and are delighted to announce that they have found buyers for the business as it stands. Mark and Pat have decided to gently step sideways over the next few years and hand ownership of the company to Dave and Claire Candy. Spartan's long term future is now secured and a formal share sale agreement was formally signed by all parties at the end of last year.
The announcement was made during February's Music Expo show in Olympia. The picture below shows Mark, Pat and Dave, supporting Nina Trory's celebration of Waveney Music's 10th Anniversary.
Nothing will change at all until January 2018, when Dave and Claire will be made directors of Spartan Press. Mark and Pat will continue to be involved initially in the workings of their original 'baby' and will work tirelessly to support Dave and Claire as and when required. The deal is not concluded until 2022, and the idea is to make the transition just as seamless as humanly possible.
Please note that all contracts between our composers, arrangers, editors, associate publishers and suppliers will continue to be valid because all were signed with the corporate body that is Spartan Press Music Publishers Limited (not Mark and Pat personally), and all contracts will continued to be honoured in the same energetic spirit as previously.
Below (optional bed-time reading) is 'chapter and verse', with a bit of background history if you have the time, energy and inclination to read it!
Thankyou so much for all your support over the years!
Background story from Mark (sorry this goes on a bit - MG!)...
* A couple of years ago, Pat asked me "What do you want to happen to Spartan when you are 'no more'"?
* Spartan has taken 30 years to build, and now has responsibilities beyond just feeding and entertaining us Goddards!
- 5 full time staff depend on Spartan for their jobs.
- 250 + composers receive royalties from Spartan.
- 20 + publisher agencies depend on us.
* So the answer was easy:- I'd like Spartan to "live on", and in the same cordial spirit of friendly, energetic yet professional management.
* So, if I was serious about that wish for Spartan to not only survive my departure, but to thrive, I would have to start making plans now, even though we are talking about years ahead in the future.
* Often in the case of handing on "the family business", one of the children would step into the breach. But I've seen that fail so many times in the printed music world.
* And what's more, none of our children have taken themselves down the "classical music route", so for my money, that counts them out.
* Getting the business finally separate from our family home was step one. It would be virtually impossible to envisage somebody buying Strathmashie House and running the business in the same way as Pat and I had done.
* So, to this end, last year we succeeded in snapping up an 8,000 square foot industrial unit that was perfect for Spartan. I'm glad to report that the new premises, are working well, and things are so much more efficient than at Strathers.
- Internet connection superb
- Deliveries from suppliers are prompt
- Distribution to customers is quicker
* The property was purchased outright by a "property management company", formed solely for the purpose, called "Castle Spartan". This new firm just happens to be owned by Pat and myself, thanks to cashing in our pension scheme, releasing endowment policies, topped up by a small commercial mortgage from Barclays Bank (God bless 'em).
* With the business finally out of the house, and all the kids accommodated elsewhere, selling Strathmashie was the next step. This has happened at last!
Earmarking a potential buyer
The final step, and the most difficult, in ensuring Spartan's longevity, was to find a buyer for the business who was exactly right, possessing all the right qualities, talents, experience, drive and crucially: a love of the Scottish Highlands.
* This is where Dave and Claire Candy came up with the right solution - them!
* The deal, which will not be completed until 2022, has taken 8 months to negotiate and has involved solicitors, banks and various types of accountants.
* The key to the success of this handover of responsibilities, is that it will be very gradual, so that the boat does not rock at any stage. Most customers and suppliers will not even realise that there has been a change.
* The agreement makes Dave and Claire directors from January 2018. Mark and Pat are already working with them on every aspect of the company, and this training will continue over the coming years.
* Mark and Pat sold Strathmashie House in December 2016, and have purchased 14 Park Terrace, Glasgow. From here they will continue to work remotely for Spartan from the city (as they did successfully from Glasgow from 2012 - 2014) and continuing to sell for the company on the road as before. Although the days of a traveling sale rep being instantly profitable are sadly over, the role of ambassador for Spartan is still important and I relish continued employment in that field!
* Tess and Jay moved to Glasgow last year, leaving their part-time roles at Spartan Press. Pat and I are pleased to announce that to fill the gap left by T&J, we have appointed long standing I.T. guru Ian Stevenson to a full time role that involves computer support, but also production management and printing work. This provides a welcome change for Ian, and we can think of no better person to be in charge of this critical area of Spartan's activities.
* Annette Reavley continues to run Fuller Music for us with great efficiency and energy. Annette is looking to move to Newtonmore to reduce her commute from Laggan to Kingussie.
Music degree from Leeds College of Music, and also studied in Texas.
Spent 4 years playing trombone professionally in big-bands on cruise liners.
Worked in the music retail industry under the Kensington Chimes banner in central London for many years, becoming Manager of the a Royal Academy of Music Shop.
Worked as Spartan's trade sales manager since 2012.
Loves the Highlands. Long distance road cycling is his thing. Founder member of "Highland Brass", based in Inverness.
Dave met Claire when she was studying on an advanced singers course at the Academy.
They have two kids (Edward and Juno) both currently at the local primary school. Claire edits and designs the local newsletter "The Laggan Splash", and has a talent for graphic design, photography and social media.