Power 100 2013: 90 to 81

By PrintWeek Team, Thursday 22 August 2013

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PrintWeek's annual run-down of the industry's most influential individuals, here we look at numbers 90 to 81.

Why As managing director of Stehlin Hostag’s UK operation, which reportedly supplies around 40% of the UK sheetfed market, David Ward had been teetering on the brink of securing a Power 100 place for the past few years. But this year’s tie-up with Israeli third-party wide-format ink supplier Bordeaux Digital Printink, means that the Huber Group operation has secured itself a place on the top table of inks manufacturers. Described by one customer as one of the most knowledgeable "ink technologists in the game", Ward is, according to one colleague, also a fantastic leader and brand ambassador. "He makes it his business to understand his customers’ needs and they know he’s a true partner in their success."

Why Historically Buxton chairman Bernard Galloway has made the power list, but this year his son takes his place on print’s power list. Buxton’s managing director now has his hand firmly on the tiller of the Derbyshire-based magazine printer, with a £20m investment programme well underway. With Buxton’s production capacity revitalised and enlarged, Kirk Galloway has set his sights on expanding the printer’s operating base. Known for thinking "out of the box", Galloway is a man who knows what he wants and invariably gets it – his negotiating skills are, to quote one supplier, "legendary" and, to quote another, "scary!" His shrewd but low key managerial style doesn’t mask his dedication and commitment.

Why Stepping up to the post of managing director from his role of business director last March, Vpress’s Tim Cox has certainly proved his merit over the past year. A key success has been Vpress forming a strategic partnership with Konica Minolta, with the digital giant citing Vpress as the ideal web-to-print solution for allowing "people to enter a market with easy adoption, with quick, easy steps to start enabling new business". A further recent success has been growth of the Vpress team to include a new sales coordinator and new customer support executive. Under Cox’s leadership, the vendor is apparently growing at such a rate that four further staff may soon join the team.

Why Whether it’s his company’s MIS and web-to-print offerings or the latest advances in automotive excellence, Tharstern managing director Keith McMurtrie is a tech-head through and through. He possesses a fast-moving and innovative brain, as a colleague points out: "He’s so far ahead, in terms of mindset, that it can be hard to keep up with him." Nevertheless, his ability to communicate his ideas means that he plays a crucial role in the ongoing development of JDF and works closely with the leading equipment manufacturers – and at the heart of the CIP4 organisation – to ensure integration. He is also described as "good fun. Very relaxed, very laid-back".

Why The past year has seen Printed.com yet again double its sales, a trend that’s held true for the past three. Playing no small part has been the Tangent offshoot’s acquisition of Goodprint at the end of November, a move bringing the number of European countries Printed.com has an online presence in to 16. "The staff count is always going up," adds a Printed.com insider, who attributes this largely to founder Nicholas Green’s "very driven and energetic" leadership. For this colleague, the presence of  "good music and sweet dispensers in the offices, and a bar in Green’s office for nice Friday afternoon drinks", does no harm to morale either.

Why chief executive Mark Handford is well-known for always having a strong vision for where this Sussex-based company should go next, and the past year has been no exception. Most notable, of course, has been Pureprint’s investment in not just one but two HP Indigo 10000s, a move that has enabled the company to bring in new business by offering variable data on a larger sheet size. Also maintaining Pureprint’s reputation for trendsetting, has been the firm’s decision to become the first Indigo 10000 user to upgrade to six rather than four colours, and the launch of a new Gold Carbon Neutral environmental initiative.

Why If he weren’t managing director at Precision Colour Printing, Alex Evans would apparently love to be involved in films or managing Manchester United. Staff at the Shropshire-based printers are rather glad Evans has stuck with print though. "He’s a very motivated person to work for; he lives and breathes it," says one colleague. "Everyone feels part of the gig, everyone is happy to go the extra mile and that’s really driven from the top." The result has been a very successful year indeed, culminating in an imminent Komori and stitcher installation.

Why To say that the past 12 months have been Ipex event director Trevor Crawford’s annus horribilis is an understatement. With many of the 2014 event’s largest exhibitors pulling out one by one, just weeks after Crawford reported that the show was 75% full two years out, lesser event organisers would have run screaming for the hills. But Crawford is made of sterner, or perhaps just more stubborn, stuff. The jury is out on whether he can still truly snatch victory from the jaws of defeat, much like his beloved Charlton Athletic attempts to most Saturdays. But with a number of exhibitors rumoured to be mulling a u-turn and returning to the show floor, albeit on a smaller scale, don’t bet against him.

Why Considering Nigel Steffens has been involved with Fespa for 20 years – the past 13 as general secretary and chief executive – his debut in the Power 100 is perhaps long overdue. As the head of the ‘association of wide-format associations’ he’s been instrumental in the not-for-profit body investing close to €3m (£2.6m) back into the industry in the past seven years alone. Clearly passionate about the sector, the tennis-playing grandfather is just as enamoured with his Fespa team and members, gushing "I love you all" at the Fespa 50th Anniversary Gala Dinner at June’s Fespa London. Fortunately, the feeling is reciprocated: "He’s done a fantastic job and he’s just a joy to work with. He’s straight talking, but he has a cuddly side."

Why Now is certainly not the best time there’s ever been to be a secondhand printing kit dealer. Unless, apparently, you work for DPM. The company certainly hasn’t been immune to the challenges of finding machinery to sell in a climate where fewer printers are buying new presses. But managing director Mark Sheldrick’s dedication and "protective" treatment of his staff have kept the team strong through tough times. "He leads from the front; he’s a real workaholic," says one colleague, citing the example of Sheldrick spending eight weeks in Australia recently, valiantly going "from one industrial estate to the next." He adds: "And he really looks after his employees."

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