You can download a pdf of the attendee profiles or a copy of the European Forum programme here.
Janet Bell has been working in the office products sector for 22 years. She joined OPI in 2000, running its international events across Europe, Asia and the US. She became Director in 2006 following a management buyout and, along with the events, she now oversees OPI’s membership and marketing activities. In addition, she is a member of OPWIL (Office Products Women in Leadership) and is keen to support the role of women in the business supplies sector.
Heike Dieckmann is a long-serving member of OPI, having been with the company since 1999. During that time, she has developed an extensive knowledge of the business supplies sector and forged close industry relationships. She is also known for pushing all publishing and editorial standards to the highest level. As her native tongue is German, she remains a core point of contact for the German-speaking contingent of the industry.
Chris Exner joined OPI in August 2018 as Chief Commercial Officer and has responsibility for delivering growth in several key areas of the OPI business.
Aside from a three-year spell working in wealth management, Chris has spent almost his entire career in sales and market development within the OP sector, including 17 years at Esselte, now part of ACCO Brands, where his most recent position was VP Sales Asia. Prior to that he held a number of roles at Esselte, including VP Sales Europe, VP Western Europe & Managing Director UK, and VP European Accounts.
John Fellowes joined Fellowes Brands in 2001 and has managed various divisions of the manufacturer’s US and International business over the years. In 2012, John became President and in 2014 he assumed the role of President and CEO. He represents the fourth generation of the Fellowes family to lead the Chicago-based company. John builds upon a 100-year foundation and tradition with keen determination to keep its product offering refreshed and relevant for the ever-changing global market.
Steve Haworth began his career in the office products industry at ISA in 1991, selling telex and fax rolls. Throughout his entire career, he has either been an employee, supplier or customer of one of the EVO Group companies.
After various roles at ISA, Kodak and Pitney Bowes, Steve accepted a position in the enlarged Vasanta Group as Managing Director of Supplies Team in 2009. He gradually widened his role to include responsibility for all of Vasanta’s trading channels and joined the Vasanta Board in 2012. After the acquisition and merger of the Vasanta and o2o businesses in 2014, Steve assumed the role of EVO Group’s Sales & Marketing Director. He was appointed Group CEO in 2016.
Steve Hilleard is CEO of leading trade media company OPI and is a 35-year veteran of the industry. Having established OPI as the industry’s most trusted media player, his focus is on the transformation of the company into the premier independent global provider of world-class integrated packages of print and digital media, marketing and sales resources, industry information, research and consulting as well as events in office products and adjacent categories.
Kevin Johnson is CEO of leading workplace solutions company, Warehouse Direct. He spent over ten years in the OP industry before leaving to join management consulting firm Bain & Company. After working in a wide variety of industries while at Bain, he returned to Warehouse Direct. Since then, Kevin has worked to transform the company from a mostly office supplies distributor into the most diverse provider of equipment, services, products and interiors for the workplace.
Franz Ratzenberger joined COLOP in 2006 and is currently Managing Director, having previously held the position of Head of International Sales and Marketing for 15 years.
A leading international stamp manufacturer, COLOP employs more than 580 people worldwide and exports to more than 120 countries. In addition to traditional stamps, the company specialises in digital marking solutions and stamps for the arts and craft sector.
Before joining COLOP, Franz was Head of Sales at Fischer Skis Austria for ten years and had previously worked at Adidas Austria as Head of Sports Promotion. Franz participated in the 1992 Olympic Games, representing Austria in the 4x100m relay.
Richard Scharmann has been CEO of PBS Holding since 2008. PBS Holding is one of the leading distributors in Central Europe, providing services in Austria, Germany, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Poland and Italy. With headquarters in Austria, PBS Holding currently has 1,415 employees and achieved sales of €359 million in 2021.
His previous positions include VP Aircraft Engines at Bombardier Recreational Products.
André Vasconcelos is CEO of global visual communications specialist Bi-silque. He started his career at Bi-silque at a young age, obtaining experience of every sector of the business, including production, sales and marketing. André has seen the company become a modern, world-leading business, based on modern management models. The entire business is underpinned with a strong emphasis on social and environmental responsibilities, together with innovative product development.
Robert Baldrey has worked in the business supplies industry for over 25 years.
He has held many leadership roles in finance and general management, including CFO of Spicers, where he was instrumental in building a £750 million pan-European wholesale business. He was CEO of EVO Group for six years and led the creation of the UK’s largest multichannel distributor through the merger of Vasanta and office2office.
After leaving EVO in 2016, Robert set up his own consulting company, Prism Advisory and now works on an interim basis in general management and turnaround. He was Managing Director of Staples UK and Ireland for 18 months and has just started a new role assisting Office Depot with its EU7 Contract Division.
Sales & Marketing Director
Focus 7 International
Based in Germany, Georg Bettin is Managing Director of innovative cutting, measuring, first aid and sharpening products supplier Acme United Europe. He has held this role since November 2010. Prior to joining Acme, Georg spent nearly 20 years at Atlanta Office Products, ultimately holding the position of Area Manager for Central Europe.
Henk Beukman has worked for 3M for nearly 40 years and has held roles across many divisions including Office Supplies, Healthcare, Automotive, Chemicals, Personal Safety, Mining, and Consumer. For the past 20 years, Henk has worked for 3M across the world, directing the business sectors through change. Currently, he leads 3M’s Consumer Business Group, dealing with the major transnational distributors in the European office supplies and DIY markets.
Steve Bilton is Managing Director of FusionPlus Data which provides product content management and distribution services, predominantly within the business supplies sector. The FusionPlus Data set fuels the back office systems and e-commerce webstores of over 1,000 OP dealers throughout the UK and Ireland. Steve has over 25 years in the software and data solutions arena under his belt, in both the UK and North America.
Marc Bürkle is Managing Partner at oddity group and CEO of Commerce Connector. He started his career in the office products industry as a product manager and e-commerce specialist. After several years, he decided to build his own company and joined his two current business partners about 12 years ago.
He has a clear picture of how brands and retailers need to reinvent their collaboration in the digital age and which digital trends will come to the Western world from China. Today the oddity group is an independent service provider for brands and retailers in the digital age with more than 250 specialists in Stuttgart, Berlin, Cologne, Belgrade, Taipei, and Atlanta. Clients include 3M, dm-drogerie markt, Disney, Beiersdorf, Bosch Powertools, Mammut, Mercedes, L´Oréal, Groupe SEB, Porsche, Red Bull, Trumpf, Scott and many more.
With a focus on growing online and offline sales through digital marketing and e-commerce projects across the globe, oddity group is known for constantly breaking new ground and continually challenging itself as well as existing approaches and process models.
As VP International Sales B2B & B2C, Ewoud Bosch has been responsible for edding’s European subsidiaries since April 2017. He heads a team of area sales managers for distribution partners in more than 40 countries in the EMEA region.
In addition, international key account activities fall under his management and he is in charge of edding’s International Trade Marketing Department. Ewoud has already held several sales management positions in the business supplies industry – he was responsible for field sales at Lyreco until 2004 when he joined the edding group as Managing Director, first at edding Legamaster and then at edding Benelux.
Gordon Christiansen is an Australian who was born in Denmark, lived in the UK for 27 years, and now lives in Atlanta. After leaving the family business in Fremantle, Australia, Gordon embarked on a career in sales and marketing with Pitney Bowes and Canon before investing in and running an office products and graphic arts dealership in London called London Graphic Centre.
He is passionate about getting corporate messaging 100% clear and how alignment between marketing strategy, execution and sales effort will enhance and accelerate market penetration. As a partner at Highlands he is responsible for the effective organisation of the business, as well as their strategic marketing and marketing services business.
Tim Cole is an expert in digital transformation, digital identify, digital ethics and IT security. He has lived in Germany for most of his adult life and his published books have become standard texts for non-technical managers involved in the IT decision-making process. He is Editor of Smart Industry – the IoT Business Magazine which explores the exciting possibilities of a connected world.
Arda Erdem has held the position of Sales Director at Avery UK for 11 months. He manages a sales team of five to drive sales and brand growth.
Prior to joining Avery, he spent six years at DKB Household where he was responsible for the sales and marketing strategy across multiple export regions including Germany, the Nordics, the Netherlands, Spain, South Africa and Turkey. He also spent four years as Export Manager at Carlton, and was Key Account Manager at Masters London.
Gareth Farrell leads the Office Supplies division for 3M EMEA, based out of the UK. He started his career in the office products industry over 20 years ago in field and key account sales, working with UK and Ireland wholesalers, resellers and the contract channel.
He then progressed through category development, brand marketing and trade leadership roles focused on the home improvement and professional trades segments. More recently, he has successfully led businesses at 3M spanning the Consumer and Health Care sectors, predominantly with UK and Ireland responsibility.
Gert Gerber has worked in the office supplies business since 2003, spending six years at Scan Office and nine years at Office Supplies Denmark (2003-2008 and again from 2015). Office Supplies Denmark is the largest dealer group in Denmark after been created in 1999 from four independent dealer groups. With 35 members and a third-party warehouse, Office Supplies Denmark has sales of €150 million.
Having joined Esselte in 1997, Paul Gouka left the organisation in 1999 to join Sony Benelux. Three years later he returned to Esselte in the role of Sales & Marketing Director Benelux.
From 2006, he managed a number of global accounts and in 2008 he headed up the European Major Accounts (EMAC) business. From mid-2014, the international (export) business was added. The Esselte EMEA business is now fully integrated in the ACCO Brands EMEA organisation and Paul remains in the position of VP EMAC & International Sales.
Please view Volker’s LinkedIn profile at https://www.linkedin.com/in/volker-harbrecht-20381342/
Julie Hawley is Managing Director of Office Friendly, a leading dealer group within the UK office products market. A qualified accountant by trade, Julie has almost 30 years of experience in the industry. She started the journey in the finance department at Kingfield Wholesale Office Supplies, now known as VOW, ultimately holding the Financial Controller role before moving to Office Friendly in 2006. Julie spent ten years at Office Friendly learning the business before taking the Managing Director role in July 2016.
Johannes Hollender has worked in the supplies business for over 20 years and in distribution for the past 12 years. He joined ALSO International in 2009 and is currently European Sales Director, responsible for the supplies business across the continent. Johannes is also regional lead for DACH for print and supplies within the ALSO Group.
Tim Holmes has worked for a number of companies in the office products arena in a 27-year career in the industry. On the sales side, he has worked for ACCO and Fellowes and then switched to marketing and merchandising roles at Lyreco and Staples in UK and Europe. In 2014, Tim joined Exertis Supplies to develop the office products category to add to the already successful ink and toner business. Using the same low cost approach, the team at Exertis has grown a multimillion pound office products category that continues to grow rapidly.
Steve Horne started his career in manufacturing working in both the rag trade and soft furnishings. He then moved to retail in sales management with Lowndes Queensway and Wickes Building Supplies. Steve took his first board position in Wickes as Logistics, followed by Supply Chain Director. He was part of the team that sold Wickes to Travis Perkins for £950 million, staying on for two years on the Travis strategy board. He then moved to Unipart Automotive as Sales and Operations Director and subsequently to Euro Car Parts building the business from £160 million to £1.3 billion. He finished as Group COO prior to being appointed CEO of SPOT Group.
Frank Indenkämpen started his career in the office products industry in 1996 as a Sales Rep for Hansa-Technik. In 2000, he joined Novus Dahle as Product Manager and Assistant to the Managing Director. In 2002, he was promoted to Sales Director Central Europe and moved to Managing Director of Schneider Novus Vertriebs in 2006. In 2009, Frank was appointed Managing Director Sales and Marketing of Dahle Bürotechnik and in 2011 also became responsible for Novus as Managing Director Sales and Marketing. The two companies merged in 2012.
Frank is now Managing Director of Novus Dahle; he also retains the positions of Managing Director of Schneider Novus Vertriebs, and President of Dahle North America.
Phil Jones is the UK Managing Director of information, communication and technology vendor, Brother.
Köhler, Jeffrey James
Jeffrey James is the current Key Account Director for International Key Accounts within EMEA. He works with a strong team of local key account managers supported by a dedicated marketing team representing such brands as Dymo, Rubbermaid, Parker, Papermate, Irwin, Waterman and Sharpie.
Prior to this, Jeffrey held various positions at Newell Rubbermaid including: Sales Director for Commercial Products, Sales Manager for Office Products, and International Key Account Manager.
Kypros Kyprianou is Group CEO for the Theo Paphitis Retail group, including Ryman, Robert Dyas, Boux Avenue and London Graphic Centre, all of which are owned by retail entrepreneur and businessman Theo Paphitis. The group has a combined total of more than 350 stores, 4,200 staff, serving more than 28 million customers a year. Kypros’s combination of a degree in Actuarial Science and a banking qualification added to his retail ‘apprenticeship’ with Theo Paphitis since 2004, makes him unique in the retail industry.
David has more than 25 years of experience in the OP sector having created and managed leading dealer groups in the UK. He now utilises his skills and experience across a number of industry sectors as Sales and Marketing Director of Focus7 International, the branding and digital marketing agency he co-founded in 2015. David is a Fellow of the Institute of Direct and Digital Marketing, has been a non-Executive Director of the BOSS Federation for more than ten years, is a Liveryman of the Stationers’ Company and a past President of the Society of Old Friends.
Michae Leiss is Head of European Key Account Management at HSM, a global pioneer of environmental and office technology solutions. Founded in 1971, HSM is a specialist for products and services for data protection and manufactures a wide range of shredding solutions for the home, business, large-scale commercial operations and other institutions, at its three German production sites.
Claudia Lioumbas has spent 23 years with Avery and has held the position of Sales Director Central Europe since 2013. She is responsible for all sales activities in Germany, Switzerland and Austria. In her career at Avery she has held various sales and marketing roles, and was Sales Manager from 2008-2013, responsible for mass markets in Germany.
Based in Munich, Wolfram Lipp is a Senior Project Manager at Roland Berger. He consults for various industries on strategic issues around sales/e-commerce and operations management and his clients are multinational blue chip and medium-sized firms.
Prior to Roland Berger, he worked for five years at Amazon Germany where he led vendor management teams in grocery and office products. He also helped launch Amazon Business and other formats like Amazon Pantry. Wolfram currently concentrates on both the demand and supply side and works with various providers discussing future business models and strategies to leverage platforms and harvest opportunities.
Martin Loag is a Trade Credit Specialist at Chubb. He first worked for the company in 2004 as a student, before becoming an underwriter in 2008. He held the position of Senior Underwriter Trade Credit until 2014, when he took the role of Line Manager Trade Credit Continental Europe at Chubb European Group.
Stuart Login joined Trodat as Managing Director on 1 January 2018 and is responsible for the UK and Ireland. Prior to Trodat, Stuart gained European account experience working at Avery UK for over ten years, his last role being Sales Director. Previous to that he gained over ten years’ knowledge in the photographic industry with Kodak at a time of enormous change through the move to a digital platform.
Jerg Luetkens has held the position of Managing Director of PBS Network for eight years. Prior to his current role, he spent 14 years at Kodak in several positions, ultimately holding the title of Architecture and Development Manager Global Digital Fulfillment Systems. He also spent five years at Kaiser & Kraft as Architect and Developer.
Horst-Werner Maier-Hunke has served as Managing Director of Durable Hunke & Jochheim since 1980. With around 700 employees worldwide, the company’s product range includes solutions and holistic concepts for the workplace.
The company achieved sales of €100 million in 2018 and has manufacturing sites in Germany, the Netherlands and Poland. Distributors are located in the US, the Netherlands, Sweden, France, Austria, Belgium, Russia and the UK.
Greig Millar joined Brother UK in 2004 as a channel account executive, moving up through the organisation to head up various business channels including retail, strategic partners, services & solutions and end user teams. Appointed General Manager for Sales in 2016, he is responsible for all traditional sales channels from distribution through to end user teams.
Marc Nijhof has been active in the industry for over 27 years, having joined Despec in 1991. In 2002, Marc was appointed Commercial Director at Dexxon Data & Media Storage, before joining Ahrend Office Products as Sales Director two years later. In 2006, he moved to Alpha International, starting as Commercial Director before being promoted to Managing Director in 2010. After ALSO Holding acquired Alpha International in 2014, Marc was also appointed as SVP for ALSO CoC (Center of Competence Print & Supplies).
Having joined Bruneau France in 2010, Nicolas Poitier is currently CEO of the Bruneau Group. With operations in France, Benelux and Spain, Bruneau enjoys a turnover of €300 million and has 750 employees. An engineer by background, Nicolas developed a strong interest in sales and marketing with roles in companies such as Air Liquide and General Electric. More recently he held several general management positions within the Alcan Packaging Group (now merged with the Australian Amcor Group).
Unilever makes some of the best-known brands in the world and are present in 98% of households across the UK. Globally, Unilever products are used by two billion people every day. Unilever is proud to manufacture the UK’s favourite tea, PG Tips, in its own Rain Forest Alliance Certified plantations.
As National Account Manager responsible for Office Supplies, Kate is keen to discuss the opportunities tea has in this ever-evolving channel. Unilever also manufactures a broad range of snack items including Red Red/Prep Co and Pot Noodle which have a firm fit within office breakrooms.
Thomas Schinkel is an internationally recognised business adviser who works with large and medium-size businesses on strategic issues that include cross-border mergers and acquisitions, and international business development. He has helped establish and co-found several companies and he has served on the board of companies in the software industry, the business products industry and in the medical device industry.
Based in Iserlohn in Germany, Andreas Schönwälder is responsible for the international subsidiaries of Durable in Europe and North America, as well as the International Customer Operation Department.
Throughout his 23 years at Durable, he has led the strategic and operational development and success of the company in various positions. Before joining Durable, Andreas was a Captain and Company Commander in the German armed forces for 12 years.
Jonathan Smith has held the position of VP Sales Europe at Avery since 2001. Prior to this, he was Sales Director at Avery Office Products UK for nine years. Jonathan’s career in office products began in 1981, when he joined 3M Office Products in the UK. He worked at 3M for ten years where he held various sales and marketing roles.
Paul Smith is Director of Sales & Marketing of Mitsubishi Pencil Co, a leading manufacturer of writing instruments. Based in Japan since 1887, the company’s global brands include uni-ball and Posca. Paul is currently responsible for sales and marketing within Europe.
Arnold Theuws has been in the office products industry for 16 years having started at dealer group and wholesaler Quantore as Financial Controller. Arnold then became Chief Financial and Operational Officer in 2003. In 2009, he became CEO of the €140 million group. Previous to Quantore, Arnold held various roles at KLM Royal Dutch Airlines from 1989-2000, including different controller functions at its head office in Amsterdam, as well as Controller Iberian Peninsula, and Controller South East Europe.
Philip Tidd has more than 25 years of experience in workplace consultancy, real estate advisory, design, and urban strategy. He has worked with many leading global organisations across mainland Europe to implement workplace programmes attuned to the region’s many cultural and legislative variations. As Head of Consulting Europe, based in Gensler’s Munich office, Philip has a focus on both global and regional clients in Germany and the wider Europe region.
Julia Uherek began her career with Messe Frankfurt in 2008. Firstly, she completed a two-year internship in the Corporate Communications division. Subsequently, from 2009-2011, she worked as Internal Communications/Corporate Publishing Officer and thereafter promoted to Director of Marketing Communication Consumer Goods Fairs of Messe Frankfurt Exhibition. In this role, she was in charge of the press and advertising activities for up to 14 international fairs. Since December 2017, she has been Group Show Director Consumer Goods and responsible for the strategic development of the Christmasworld, Creativeworld, Paperworld and Beautyworld trade fairs.
van Beek, Michel
Michel van Beek began working in the industry in 1988 when he joined 3M. He was with the company for 12 years, working in various sales and marketing functions before taking a brief break from the industry. He returned to business supplies in 2001 when he joined GBC as EU County Leader. After five years he joined Fellowes, where he has held several titles, before becoming President EMEA & Asia Pacific in 2012.
Burkhard Wessel has spent more than ten years in the envelope manufacturing industry. In the late 1990s, he was responsible for domestic sales at Mayer-Kuvert before leaving the sector for a totally different business working as an executive search consultant.
However, he returned to the envelope business and has since spent five years in the role of Vice President Sales Mayer-Kuvert-network. Burkhard is also the authorised representative responsible for all Pan-European customers and International Office Supplies.
Please view Andreas’ LinkedIn profile at:
Mark Wilkinson joined ACCO in 1998 and has held various positions of increasing responsibility in both sales and marketing including Senior Director for European Major Accounts, Global Account Director and VP of Sales for EMEA.
Since the acquisition of Esselte, he has held the role of Regional Vice President UK & Ireland, overseeing the integration of Esselte in this region. In addition, Mark has five years’ experience as a Pension Trustee Director with the ACCO Brands Pension Trustee Board and is a former England International Curling team member, representing England over 40 times.
Managing Director Europe
Jade Wilson embarked on his sales career with Granada Television when people still rented televisions and videos, and this led to working for Ford and TNT.
Jade then spent nine years at Corporate Express starting as a Business Development Manager pounding the streets and generating new clients, which subsequently led to sales management and European account management. From here, Jade switched to OfficeTeam and then to Integra as Head of Business Development. In 2011, he joined Highlands as Sales Director and now leads the UK and European business for Highlands as Managing Director.
Pieter Wolters joined Staples Solutions on 1 March 2018. He heads up a team that takes responsibility for the office supplies and technology solutions categories at group level and supports all Staples business units spanning 17 countries across Europe.
Pieter started his career in business supplies at Office Depot in 2007 as Purchase Manager EMEA, before joining Spicers Continental Europe in 2011, which shortly after became AVDEO, where he spent six years as Purchasing & Category Director Europe.
Yip, Professor George
George Yip is Professor of Marketing and Strategy at Imperial College Business School in London. He was previously Professor of Strategy and co-Director of the Centre on China Innovation at China Europe International Business School in Shanghai.