Paul Ian Fraser came to prominence through his involvement in the purchase and sale of the famous stamps firm Stanley Gibbons which he sold at a great profit, only to see most of the proceeds lost following trading difficulties. Before this Fraser had a background in accountancy, mail-order, retailing and property development.
In 1976 Fraser became a partner in Plastic Wax, a company in Bristol which specialised in collectible records and still exists. In 1978 the firm started to offer music memorabilia and this became the collectibles firm Fraser's Autographs. Ultimately, Fraser's Autographs became part of Stanley Gibbons in 1996.
Fraser first invested in Stanley Gibbons in 1989 when he acquired a large block of shares in the company from Clive Feigenbaum. He purchased a further 30% stake in the company from New Zealand businessman Sir Ron Brierley who is a stamp collector. In 1990 he was appointed Executive Chairman of the firm. By 1995 Fraser had acquired 76.83% of Gibbons shares and he purchased the rest of the shares in December 1995.
In June 1998 Stanley Gibbons was sold for £13.5 million to Flying Flowers. In the deal Fraser took shares in Flying Flowers instead of cash and he was left with an 8% stake in the enlarged company following the transaction. The merger was not a success and in 2000 the two companies were demerged again after a series of profits warnings and trading problems. Fraser's stake was reduced in value from £13.5 million to £4 million. The demerged Stanley Gibbons became Communitie.com and was listed on AIM. The chairman of Flying Flowers was quoted as saying the deal "...was at the wrong price and at the wrong time."
Paul Fraser Collectibles
Paul Fraser's current venture is Tika Lifestyles Limited, trading as Paul Fraser Collectibles, a company that specialises in the sale of high-end collectibles such as rare stamps, vintage wine and autographs.
The firm also provides a news service and a collectibles video channel known as PFC TV.
- Briggs, Michael (July 2006). "The Story of Stanley Gibbons" (PDF). Gibbons Stamp Monthly. London: Stanley Gibbons. 37 (2): 52. ISSN 0954-8084. Retrieved 2010-03-22.
- "Newsdesk: Stanley Gibbons Share Deal" in Gibbons Stamp Monthly, October 1989, p. 9.
- Cope, Nigel (2002-10-21). "A serious collector in tune with the times". The Independent. Retrieved 2010-03-22.
- Cope, Nigel (1998-04-08). "Owner sells Stanley Gibbons for pounds 13.5m". The Independent. Retrieved 2010-03-22.
- Cope, Nigel (2000-03-29). "Flowers to demerge Stanley Gibbons". Independent.co.uk. Retrieved 2010-03-22.
- O'Sullivan, Jack (1999-03-24). "The stamp collector who lost a mint in the flower market". The Independent. Retrieved 2010-03-22.
- "Our Expert Panel". Paul Fraser Collectibles. 2010-02-11. Retrieved 2010-03-22.
- "Terms and Conditions: Tika Lifestyles Limited". Paul Fraser Collectibles. 2009-10-28. Retrieved 2010-03-22.
- Tika Lifestyles at Companies House 11 March 2010 archived at WebCite