John Menzies

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John Menzies plc
Traded as LSEMNZS
Industry Distribution
Founded 1833
Headquarters Edinburgh, Scotland
Key people
Iain Napier (chairman)
David McIntosh (CEO, Menzies Distribution)
Craig Smyth, (CEO Menzies Aviation)
Revenue £1,899.7 million (2012)[1]
£59.9 million (2012)[1]
£42.4 million (2012)[1]
Divisions Menzies Aviation
Menzies Distribution
EM News Distribution (50%)
Slogan the time critical logistics company

John Menzies plc (MEN-zeez, traditionally /ˈmɪŋɪs/ MING-iss) is a Scottish business established in 1833. It has two main divisions: Menzies Distribution and Menzies Aviation. Menzies Distribution is a major distributor of newspapers and magazines throughout the United Kingdom. Menzies Aviation is a provider of aviation services to many airlines. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange.

John Menzies was also formerly well known for its high street and railway station shops, particularly in Scotland. The retail division (which dealt in newspapers, magazines, books, stationery and other products) was sold to rival WH Smith in the late 1990s.[2]


A John Menzies shop. The range of goods carried in larger stores like this was similar to that of WH Smiths.

The company was founded by John Menzies of Edinburgh, a Victorian entrepreneur who built up his small newsagent business (established when he was 25 years old) into a national chain: his grave is in Warriston Cemetery Edinburgh.[3]

In 1988 the business purchased 66 of the Martin Retail Group's largest stores in England, doubling John Menzies' floor-space overnight. These stores (which had previously traded as Martin the Newsagent, Lavells Newsagents, Lewis Meeson, RS McColl, Sperrings, and House of Andrew) were quickly rebranded as Menzies' stores. The retail operation was sold to W H Smith High Street (and some to WHSmith Europe Travel Retail) in 1998 to enable Menzies to concentrate on its distribution business.[2]

In 2007 John Menzies merged its newspaper and magazine wholesale distribution businesses in Northern Ireland into a joint venture with Eason & Son to be called EM News Distribution.[4]


John Menzies and the Menzies Distribution division have their head offices in Edinburgh.[5]


The Menzies Aviation plc division has its head office in Feltham, London Borough of Hounslow.[6][7] Previously the aviation division head office was in Aviation House at London Heathrow Airport in the London Borough of Hillingdon.[5][8]

Menzies Aviation operates at over 132 stations in 30 countries. It provides ground services and cargo handling.


The name Menzies is traditionally pronounced /ˈmɪŋɪs/ MING-iss, as the "z" is historically the letter ȝ (yogh). Even in Scotland (where the name "Menzies" originated), the name of the retail stores was increasingly pronounced as "John MEN-zeez".

John Menzies provides a humorous guide to the correct pronunciation.[9]


  1. ^ a b c Preliminary Results 2012
  2. ^ a b Menzies sells shops to WH Smith in GBP 64m deal Scotland on Sunday, 8 March 1998
  3. ^ "Warriston Cemetery". Retrieved 2012-06-13. 
  4. ^ "Eason and Menzies to form joint venture in Ireland". John Menzies Plc Online News (John Menzies Plc). 2007-01-03. 
  5. ^ a b "Annual Report 2009." John Menzies plc. 108. Retrieved on 18 February 2011. Principal business addresses John Menzies plc 108 Princes Street Edinburgh EH2 3AA" and "Menzies Distribution 2 Lochside Avenue Edinburgh Park Edinburgh EH12 9DJ" and "Menzies Aviation Aviation House 923 Southern Perimeter Road London Heathrow Airport Hounslow Middlesex TW6 3AE."
  6. ^ "Contact Us." Menzies Aviation. Retrieved on 18 February 2011. "Menzies Aviation plc, 4 New Square, Bedfont Lakes, Feltham, Middlesex, TW14 8HA, United Kingdom."
  7. ^ "Head Office Location." Menzie's Aviation. Retrieved on 18 February 2011.
  8. ^ "Corporate Office." Menzie's Aviation. Retrieved on 18 February 2011. "Menzies Aviation plc, Aviation House, 923 Southern Perimeter Road, London Heathrow Airport, Middlesex, TW6 3AE, UK."
  9. ^ John Menzies: Name pronunciation at the Wayback Machine (archived September 30, 2007)

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