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Management reorganisation at Agfa Graphics

Thursday, 01 March 2007
By Print 21 Online Article

“With the imminent retirement of some of our key staff, it has allowed us to put into place a well thought out succession plan that not only brings new faces and fresh ideas to the regional management team, but also allows an orderly hand-over of key responsibilities in coming months,” said regional general manager, John Shore.

As previously announced, industry veteran Bruce Lowery will leave Agfa after 37 years of service. He will hand over to another long-term Agfa staffer, Steve Taylor. Taylor will take on the important role of Inkjet Business Manager for the Oceania region.

“It’s no secret that inkjet is of enormous importance at Agfa,” said Shore. “Bruce established some critical foundations for our launch into industrial inkjet and I am counting on Steve to build on those and establish a prominent market position – just as Agfa has in our other market sectors.”

Taylor (pictured) has already relocated to Melbourne. His previous position – as Agfa’s New Zealand Sales Manager – has been filled by Auckland-based Mike Stevens, who commenced his new role on 1 February.

Chris Gander and Trevor Dawe, who have both had long careers with Printing Technologies and later Agfa Graphics, will leave the business at the end of June. Gander’s responsibility for Agfa’s pre-press systems will be taken over by Harry Kontogiannis (previously Agfa’s Regional Services Manager). Mike O’Sullivan (pictured together below) will fill the vacated regional services role, having relocated to Melbourne from Sydney were he had spent over ten years as NSW services manager.

“Digital pre-press still remains our core competency,” said Shore. “Harry has a production background in digital pre-press and an impeccable career in our technical services team, making him a logical choice for such a product-focused role. Mike is very well respected in the Sydney and Brisbane markets, which will no doubt transfer to his new regional role.”

Grant Cooper, who currently maintains a sales management position for the Victorian and Tasmanian markets, will assume the role of Offset Business Manager at the end of June when Dawe leaves. Cooper is a qualified lithographic printer and his career at Agfa spans nearly 20 years, involving both technical and sales roles. Recently, he has taken on a high profile assisting with the successful release of Agfa’s :Azura chemical-free plate system that is dominating the growing processless sector of the digital offset plate market.

“Grant will undertake a dual role, having the additional responsibility of managing a growing distributor channel primarily focused on offset sales to the small- and medium-format markets,” Shore said.

The roles of Business Manager Newspapers (Koni Neuhofer)and Regional Marketing Manager (Garry Muratore) remain unchanged, whilst Commercial Manager Ross Boyce will assume the role as Regional Finance and Administration Manager.

With many of the new managers coming from state-based positions, several new faces will assume state roles in the coming weeks.

“Succession planning runs through our entire organisation,” said Shore. “The state-based personnel are our people at the coal-face, so it is imperative that we have dynamic, customer-focused staff employed in such positions.”

With Grant Cooper vacating his Victorian sales role, his position will be assumed by Nigel Compton – currently responsible for Agfa’s range of third-party agency products – (pictured, left). Compton has previous sales management experience, having managed Printing Technologies’ New Zealand operation in the late nineties before relocating to Agfa in Melbourne in 2001.

David Anderson, who currently heads up Agfa’s Queensland sales operation will leave the company in June after twenty years of services (initially with Printing Technologies and later Agfa Graphics). Moving to Brisbane will be Gavin Hartslief, (pictured, right) who has been in charge of Agfa’s Western Australian sales over the last three years. Hartslief has had roles with Agfa in Melbourne, Cape Town, and Johannesburg in both sales, applications, and technical service positions.

From 1 April, newspaper applications specialist Gary Illing (pictured below) will assume sales responsibilities for newspapers and commercial markets based in Perth.

“With Agfa having such a high profile in newspaper markets across the regions, we feel that Gary’s excellent technical background will serve him and our Perth-based customers well,” Shore added.

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