Son takes over MD role at Wood Richardson

Richard Stuart-Turner
Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Commercial printer Wood Richardson has a new managing director, following the promotion of the previous managing director’s son to the role.

James Richardson, who previously worked as the York-based firm’s production director, has taken the reins from his father John, who has been at the helm of the business for more than 30 years and has now become chairman.

He said: "I’ve always looked up to my father and it’s a proud time for me to take this role and the responsibility on from him because he’s been a mentor to me for a long time.

“I am proud to maintain the values the company has embedded throughout its culture in the future.”

Richardson started his print career at Wood Richardson shortly after finishing school.

He has since studied a BSc (Hons) print and media management course at Leeds Metropolitan University and worked at firms including Hallmark Cards, St Ives and Scorpio Print Finishing, before rejoining Wood Richardson around seven years ago.

During his time already served at the business, Richardson has introduced new shift patterns and flexible working to reduce company overheads and improve profitability without compromising on production output. He has also implemented and maintained the ISO 9001 standard.

Richardson said he is keen to continue to invest in new machinery and support the firm’s long serving team to ensure the business can remain competitive in the marketplace.

“My father’s always invested in kit and looked at the technology available. We’ve stuck by B2 litho, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future, but we were also among the first companies to invest in a Xeikon 5000.”

Earlier this year the business installed a new Xerox Versant 2100 digital printer. It also operates a six-colour-plus-coater Heidelberg Speedmaster CD 74 and a two-colour Heidelberg Quickmaster as well as in-house finishing including cutting and creasing, laminating, folding and drilling.

“We’re looking more to do end-user and shorter-run work and we’ve just started to work with a guy that produces hand-waving flags. He’s one of the few people that has a very efficient way of producing those flags and we’re going into partnership with him and pushing that product,” said Richardson.

“There’s a lot of potential in that because there’s only a couple of us that can do those at a competitive rate.”

John Richardson added: “James has a strong printing and production background gained across a variety of printing companies and therefore has the experience and skill set to continue the good work, maintain the credible family name and steer Wood Richardson to the next level.”

Wood Richardson was established in 1905 and has been run by the Richardson family since the 1920s.

The company, which has 25 staff and a turnover of just under £2.5m, produces items including business cards, booklets, leaflets, magazines, menus and posters for a wide range of customers throughout Yorkshire.

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