Paperlinx's Philippa Charlton exits in latest job cuts

Pamela Mardle
Monday, February 11, 2013

Paperlinx's marketing director Philippa Charlton has left the company along with a number of others as the paper merchant realises the workforce reduction it proposed in November.

Charlton said that her departure from the company was amicable, and she is now on gardening leave after taking voluntary redundancy.

She will be "helping the company in any way possible" until she officially leaves at the end of March. Charlton said her redundancy was negotiated at the turn of the year, along with a number of other staff across the UK business’ logistics, finance, marketing and commercial print divisions.

The global paper merchant expects to have reduced its total workforce by 12% by the end of the current financial year, in line with November's restructure proposals.

She said: "I have spent over 11 years at Robert Horne and then more recently within the Paperlinx group and it has been a fantastic experience; however, I now feel it is the right time for me to leave.

"Paperlinx has continued to realign the cost base, which is what is needed to get ourselves right-sized for the market. 

"The new streamlined structure in the support services and sales team should provide a strong foundation from which to grow share in the core paper market whilst continuing to build vertical markets in packaging, plastics and display products"

Charlton said that it was sensible to shrink the surrounding marketing force behind sales considering the commercial print division’s new sales structure whereby customers will have one sales contact for business dealings across Howard Smith Paper Group, PaperCo and Robert Horne.

Andy Buxton and Mandy Gallego were appointed as sales directors for the division at the turn of the year, another move that reinforces the paper merchant’s strategy to collapse the three UK businesses' sales and marketing under one point of contact.

Meanwhile, Paperlinx’s chief financial officer Phil Carr has been promoted to UK managing director as his predecessor Dave Allen takes on the role of group chief executive permanently.

He said: "In June and November last year, the Paperlinx board approved restructuring and cost-reduction initiatives in its UK business, a decision that was taken in response to the ongoing depressed trading conditions across Europe and in recognition that the UK had to move rapidly to respond and become a much more streamlined organisation.

"While the restructuring has affected all areas of the UK business, including marketing, finance and admin for example; the key focus has been on reshaping our commercial print division, putting a new strategy in place designed to make us easier and simpler to do business with and offer customers access to the full range of Paperlinx products.

"This process, to create one team with one vision, to better meet our customers’ needs, has progressed at pace.

"We are on track to meet all of the cost reduction targets outlined previously and are confident that, by the end of the financial year, the overall headcount reduction across the group will also be in line with the figures quoted last year. We are committed to a sustainable future, where the customer is at the core of what we do; to profitably increase our market share and play our part in moving the group back to profitability and as such, we will continue to ensure that our structure is aligned to market needs."

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