2018: Simon Drakeford was made CEO of UK-based Euroffice Group (EO) in 2007. Since then he has grown the business to more than double its annual sales – from £18 million ($25.7 million) to nearly £40 million – according to the latest figures. Prior to joining EO Group, Drakeford had worked for telecoms providers T-Mobile UK and Orange, heading their e-commerce strategy.
EO Group – which incorporates Euroffice UK, Euroffice Italy, Euroffice Germany, UK Office Direct and Office Power – acquired UK dealer Eurostat Office Solutions earlier this year for an undisclosed sum. The deal arose from an initial meeting between Drakeford and Eurostat owner Stefan Mercado, who had revealed plans to retire.
According to Drakeford, the opportunity was too good to pass on and EO Group soon took over Eurostat’s four UK offices. It has added the business to its Office Power subsidiary, where revenues are already up 75% year on year – encouraging news for the initiative that now has 45 dealers on board and which has been the focus of much investment over the past few years.
The Eurostat deal was followed by the appointment of former Tesco.com boss John Browett as EO Group’s non-executive Chairman. Drakeford met Browett via a mutual contact and is looking to tap into his tech-related experience with big consumer retail brands – including Apple.
2017: UK-based EO Group, under the leadership of CEO Simon Drakeford, continues to focus its investment on Office Power, the group’s independent dealer technology platform. With 74% revenue growth and a 48% increase in the number of dealers in the past 12 months, the platform continues to enjoy strong growth.
The Office Power technology has been widely recognised across the industry and business-wide. This includes the Stationers’ Company Warrant Award for Excellence, the BOSS e-Business Award, the Stationers’ Company Innovation Excellence Award and the ECMOD Direct Commerce Award for Best Exploitation of Technology (in the B2B, under £25 million/$33 million, category).
EO Group has also reported strong growth in its Italian business Euroffice Italia, strengthening the group’s position in the European market.
Drakeford has most recently bolstered his management team with the appointment of a new Head of Trading and a new Head of Category. The high-calibre team is expected to prepare the group for further growth in 2018.
2016: The Euroffice Group was renamed EO Group in 2016 in order to give it a different identity to that of its operating entities – online resellers Euroffice and Office Direct and independent dealer technology platform Office Power.
Group CEO Simon Drakeford is certainly counting on Office Power to spearhead the next stage in EO Group’s growth and this continues to be a major focus of investment, including the appointment in May of the experienced Tristen Hinds as Business Development Manager and the expansion of the dealer roadshow programme across the UK. Drakeford firmly believes the Office Power solution will be able to provide dealers with a sustainable business model as the OP industry undergoes enormous structural changes.
Drakeford has recently strengthened the leadership team at group level, bringing in Neil Tinegate to the role of EO Group COO. This will enable senior management resources to focus on all areas of the business.
2015: Simon Drakeford’s Euroffice Group is coming off the back of a period of serious investments in a new technology platform, mobile commerce capabilities, the Office Power initiative and international expansion into Germany.
Drakeford has recognised that growth in the core online business is likely to remain sluggish, but wants to leverage Euroffice’s technology and e-commerce expertise by offering the Office Power platform as a sustainable growth solution for small and medium sized dealers.
Office Power was recognised in July when it won a Stationers’ Company Innovation Excellence Award, and its membership growth prospects recently received a boost with the arrival of former XPD Marketing Director Steve Robinson in a business development role.