Power 100 2015: 10-6

PrintWeek Team
Monday, December 14, 2015

Welcome to the Power 100, our 14th annual ranking of the industry’s power brokers. The 100 individuals in this year’s list make up much of the DNA of our great industry – from thoroughbred entrepreneurs, confirmed technophiles, inspirational leaders, innovators and strong silent types.

10 (2014: 12)

Gareth Jenkins, DS Smith

Why Jenkins, who became managing director of DS Smith’s packaging division 18 months ago, has been spearheading a £100m programme of investment developed with HP which brings digital print to the everyday, large scale box market this year. One colleague said: “He loves to push boundaries and this shows in his management methods. He loves to ask talented people ‘what do you like doing?’ based on the idea that if good people are enjoying themselves they will excel. A lover of sport, particularly rugby, he coaches his two sons’ teams and has a 75mph cricket bowling machine at home.

9 (New)

Stephen Goodman, YM Group

Why The YM Group’s chief financial officer goes straight in at 9, which is appropriate as just 18 months after joining the business he helmed an MBO at the £100m print group. He’s described as “razor sharp” with a phenomenal memory and capacity to take on board new information. “I’ve never met anyone better on the numbers,” says an associate. And Goodman will now transition into the CEO role under the watchful eye of YM chairman Chris Ingram, a former Power 100 number one. Who’s to say Goodman won’t be in the top slot himself one day? As a rugby fan and former player, the high point of the MBO will have been tempered by England’s disappointing performance at the Rugby World Cup.

8 (New)

Kristian Elgey, Tag Williams Lea

Why Managing director at Williams Lea Tag since mid-2014, Kristian Elgey manages a €300m spend across Europe. He has integrated client services to provide consistent account management across the group. Recent success include new business with Carlsberg, renewal with Capital One and Telefonica UK (O2) and growing packaging supply chain services. As a member of the new global Strategic Development Board, he leads its €800m supplier spend. Trained as a management accountant with Unilever he joined Williams Lea 10 years ago and spent nearly nine years in finance roles. A Rangers season ticket who can never resist talking about his team.

7 (2014: 8)

Jeremy Walters, DST

Why If you need proof positive that nice guys don’t always finish last then look no further than DST’s UK chief executive Walters. Described by colleagues as “possibly the nicest guy in print”, despite never shying away from the tough decisions. 2015 has been a good year for Walters, with DST winning a brace of PrintWeek Awards, not to mention significant wins in the financial services, utilities, healthcare and retail sectors, which combined have led to an increase in pack volumes of over 15% year-on-year. “To be honest he’s pretty boring nowadays, too professional and he works too hard,” says one former colleague. “He’s grown into a fantastic CEO though – but he will never, ever look good on the dancefloor.”

6 (2014: 5)

Matt Armitage, St Ives 

Why Another year, another big splurge on marketing services at St Ives, with the group’s biggest deal of the past year being the £50m acquisition of US-based Solstice. A new reporting structure also means we get a much better picture of the performance of its print ops, which still account for the lion’s share of sales and profits. Armitage’s style is described as “very straightforward”. “He spends a lot of time looking at the business as a whole, and at acquisitions,” says one staffer, leaving his trusted lieutenants to run the print side. “He doesn’t micro-manage, he’s quite empowering.”

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