2017 Speakers

  • Judith Donovan

    CBE Chair Keep me posted

    Judith Donovan CBE was one of the first female entrepreneurs in Yorkshire, founding her own marketing agency in 1982, which she grew to over 50 staff, and a turnover of £12.5 million, before selling to her managers in 2000.

    Since then she has pursued a non–executive career, primarily in the Public and Third sectors, and currently is

    Chair, Eden Project Ltd

    Chair, Keep Me Posted Campaign

    Chair, Royal Mail Letters Advisory Board

    Chair, Royal Mail’s Strategic Mailing Partnership

    Chair, Destination Dales Tourism Group

    Chair, Ripon Cathedral Council

    Member, Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority

    Member, Lord Chancellor’s Advisory Committee North Yorkshire

    Previously she has been Chair of the Yorkshire Tourist Board, Chair of Bradford TEC, President of Bradford Chamber of Commerce, Vice Chair of Postwatch, a Millennium Commissioner, a Director of HSE, BIG Lottery Fund, and the British Wool Marketing Board and also a Trustee of Northern Ballet and the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust.

  • Pierre E Bach

    Research Manager Hawkins Wright, UK

    Pierre joined Hawkins Wright in 2014 and has been providing research and editorial support to the Pulp & Paper team. He is co-author of our monthly multi-client publication Pulpwatch, and also makes regular contributions to The Outlook for Market Pulp and Forest Energy Monitor reports. He travels widely, both in the course of market research and also a speaker at industry gatherings and association meetings. Currently, his main research interests include the tissue and printing and writing paper markets in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.

  • Simon Biltcliffe

    CEO Webmart, UK

    Simon Biltcliffe is an award winning CEO, international public speaker and business expert; widely acclaimed for his talks on his Marxist-capitalist business model, as well as talks on employee motivation and running a thriving organisation in the 21st century.

    From starting Webmart with just £10,000 of his own savings, Simon has turned the business into a £30 million turnover organisation with just 44 employees whilst implementing his unconventional business model and maximising everyone’s I.E.F (Intellectual, Emotional and Financial) return.

    Simon’s esteemed career in the print industry has lead him to be in the Print Week Power 100 over recent years and the success Webmart has achieved has resulted in the business picking up awards from Lloyds National Business Awards over the past 3 years, including Highly Commended Employer of the Year in 2016.

  • Frank Blomme

    Programs & GTM Support Marketing Manager Graphic Communications Solutions Group International Operations Xerox, Belgium

    Current Position: Frank Blomme is the Marketing Manager of the Books and Catalog Program for the Graphic Communications Solutions Group in the Xerox Commercial Excellence Organization of International Operations.  

    Frank’s almost 20 year Xerox career has taken him from Office Solutions Consultant to a combination of BeNeLux and international assignments in Marketing. Prior to his current role, he led the Indirect Operations for Graphic Communications Operations in Europe.

    He holds a Masters in Marketing and Sales from EHSAL Brussels Belgium and a Masters in European Tourism Management from the Bournemouth University UK.

    Frank was born in Aalst, Belgium where he resides with his wife, two daughters and son.



  • Jan Duffhues

    Print Development Manager Mars Europe, The Netherland

    Over 30 packaging experience, “ to translate a creative idea into industrial printed packaging” Starting with design and graphics educations, graduated in packaging:  specialized in Consumer packaging  Start to work for Philips Electronics and switched to Mars Chocolate Europe.

    Mars offered me the challenge to work in an European environment, working in a cross segmental packaging graphics department with Veghel The Netherlands as central hub.

    Delivering optimal industrial printed packaging material for chocolate/petfood and food products in the Mars Europe portfolio


  • Oliver Dworak

    Senior Advisor Austrian Economic Chamber, Austria

    Oliver Dworak is a Public & Government Affairs expert with more than two decades of experience in lobbying and advocacy for industry, trade associations and business sectors, especially the pulp and paper and forest-based industry. After serving more than eight years as Director General of Austropapier, the Austrian Association of Paper Industry, he founded his own advisory firm AGENDA and acted as an independent business consultant. In 2016, he joined the Industry Section of the Austrian Economic Chamber, where today he is Senior Policy Advisor, responsible for Energy & Environment Policies.

    During his activities for Austropapier, Oliver also held the positions as Managing Director of ÖZEPA, the Austrian Association of Pulp and Paper Chemists and Technicians, member and Vice-Chairman of the Association Directors Group at CEPI, the Confederation of European Paper Industries, member of the Board of Print Power Austria, member of the FAO Advisory Committee on Paper and Wood Products, President of the Institute of Industrial Ecology, member of the Executive Committee of the Cooperation Platform Forest-Wood-Paper, and Secretary General of the Austrian Support Group to the Forest-based Sector Technology Platform FTP.

    Oliver studied at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences and the Technical University in Vienna, and at the University of Berkeley, California, USA.

    2016-                Austrian Economic Chamber, Industry Section: Senior Policy Advisor

    2015-2016        AGENDA Public Affairs & Management Consulting: Founder & Owner

    2002-2014        Austropapier –Association of the Austrian Paper Industry

    2006-2014: Director General

    2002-2005: Energy & Environment Director

    ÖZEPA – Austrian Association of Pulp and Paper Chemists and Technicians: Managing Director

    Print Power Austria: Member of the Board 2010-2014
    Papier aus Österreich Publishing House: Managing Director 2006-2012
    Cooperation Platform Forest Wood Paper: Member of the Executive Committee 2008-2014
    Institute for Industrial Ecology, St. Pölten: President 2008-2015
    CEPI – Confederation of European Paper Industries, Brussels: Member of the Association Directors Group 2006-2014, Vice Chairman 2012/2013
    FAO Advisory Committee on Paper and Wood Products: Member since 2010
    Forest-based Sector Technology Platform FTP, Brussels: Secretary General of the Austrian National Support Group 2005-2007

    1993-2002        Austrian Economic Chamber, Industry Section: Environment & Energy PolicyAdvisor

    1989-1993        Austrian Eco Fund: Advisor for the promotion of corporate environmental projects

    1978-1989        UniversIty of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna

                              Technical University Vienna

                             University of California Berkeley, USA




  • Jon Haag

    Director Consumer Insights BillerudKorsnäs, Sweden

    Jon Haag was born in the Capital of Sweden just before the oil crisis in 1973, giving him environmental concerns right from the start. Analytics and chemistry interest lead him to the Royal Institute of Technology (Stockholm, Sweden), graduating school in 1997 with a M Sc in Chemical Engineering, Energy and Pulp & Paper.

    Jon has gained a multidisciplinary knowledge of the forest industry, packaging and FMCG through serving companies with different viewpoints; research at SCA, technical consulting at ÅF, strategy and management consulting at McKinsey & Co and innovation at BillerudKorsnäs AB.

    Recently, Jon Haag was founder and Managing Director of NINE (BillerudKorsnäs joint-venture), an innovation and design agency helping clients to innovate their brand and their packaging. Since January 2016, he is Director Consumer Insights creating market leading understanding of the future needs for packaging at BillerudKorsnäs.


  • Stephen Harrod

    Consultant Smithers Pira, UK

    Stephen Harrod is responsible for a range of Smithers Pira reports including the Global Corrugated Market, the Global Folding Carton Market, Central and Eastern European markets for corrugated and folding carton, Packaging in the Middle East, Retail Ready Packaging, Luxury Paperboard Packaging, Liquid Packaging Board and many others, including Sustainable Insulation. He has contributed to the Smithers Pira reports on the Global Packaging Market and the Global Printing Market, whilst also building in-house databases on the global paper and packaging markets.

    Born in the UK, educated in Rhodesia and South Africa, Stephen spent eleven years building a market research company in South Africa, focussed on the paper and packaging industry in that country. He left this business and spent six years in the paper industry with Mondi and JAC Labels before relocating to England. Following a spell as a freelance marketing consultant, he has been authoring reports for Smithers Pira since 2006, with a focus on global paper and packaging markets.

  • Justo Hidalgo

    CEO and Co-Founder 24symbols, Spain

    Justo Hidalgo is co-founder and CEO of 24symbols, a service to read and share digital books in the cloud, working in any reading device with internet connection and that gives users access to an international and multi-publisher's catalogue.

    He is the author of “Idea, producto y negocio” (Idea, product and business), that walks the reader through all the stages necessary to build a quality digital product. He also teaches Product Strategy and Innovation at the Master's Degree in Industrial Design of Nebrija University, and Technology for Managers at the Nebrija Business School in Madrid, Spain. He also teachers Creativity and Innovation at U-Tad, Madrid, Product Management at ESNE, Madrid, and Lean Analytics at UNIR, a leading distance learning university in Spain. Also, Data Science topics at U-Tad, IMPACT (European University) and IE. Justo is member of the Internet Society, and Board Member and Mentor at pre-accelerator Tetuan Valley. 

    Justo holds a Ph.D. from the University of A Coruña, Spain (2007) and a B.S. in Computer Science by the Autonomous University of Madrid, Spain (1996). He has received training in Product Management, Product Marketing, Innovation and Creativity in the universities of Stanford and Berkeley, CA (2008).

    Prior to starting 24symbols, Justo was researcher/consultant at CESAT (1996-2000), deputy director of Technology at Denodo (2000-2002), professor and R&D head of the Computer Science Department at the University Nebrija at Madrid, Spain (2002-2004). At Denodo, he has served as Associate Director of the R&D department (2004-2007) and Vice President, Technology, located in Palo Alto, CA (2007-2008). His last tenure at Denodo was as VP Product Management and Consulting (2008-2011). He has also been associate professor at the CS department in the University Nebrija (1998-2002, 2004), professor of the Master's Degree in Telematics of the University of Coruña (1998-2004), professor at UNED (National University of Distance Education, 2004) and also Treasurer of the Board of the Spanish Chapter of the Internet Society, ISOC-ES (2003-2007). He is member of MMEDIS (Medieval Medicine Documents Identification System).

    Some of his work and thoughts can be reached at twitter (@justohidalgo), his blog (http://www.loscuentosdelabuelo.com in Spanish) and at http://www.slideshare.net/justohidalgo

  • Riikka Joukio

    SVP Sustainability & Corporate Affairs Metsä Group, Finland

    Riikka Joukio is Senior Vice President, Sustainability and Corporate Affairs at Metsä Group in Finland. Metsä Group is a forerunner in bioeconomy utilising renewable wood from sustainably managed northern forests, and promoting circular economy and partnerships in the value chain. The bio-product mill is a flagship project and currently under construction in Äänekoski Finland.

    Riikka holds a Master’s degree in graphic arts and paper technology as well as in strategic management and international marketing. She has acquired extensive work experience in global forest and packaging industries having previously held several technical, marketing and R&D positions, and teaching in the university of technology. Riikka has strong engagement with several national and international associations and networks in the field of sustainable forest management as well as industry.

  • Essi Lauri

    Product Manager Stora Enso, Finland

    Essi Lauri is a Product Manager at Stora Enso, a leading provider of renewable solutions in packaging, biomaterials, wooden constructions and paper on global markets. Essi is responsible for Stora Enso’s carton board brands Tambrite and CKB. She has worked at Stora Enso since 2005 in various positions in product management, business controlling and investor relations, being located in Finland and in Germany. Last year Essi was heading a research project that was looking into consumer insights on packaging in the UK, Germany and China.

    Essi has studied international business in Finland and she holds an MBA degree from Henley Business School, University of Reading.

  • Prof. Graeme Leach

    CEO and Chief Economist Macronomics, UK

    Graeme Leach is Founder & Chief Economist of macronomics, a macroeconomic, geopolitical and future megatrends research consultancy launched in 2016.


    Graeme is a visiting professor of economic policy, senior fellow of the Legatum Institute and a member of the IEA Shadow Monetary Policy Committee. He has a weekly column in the City AM newspaper in London. Over the past decade he has undertaken over 100 live television and radio interviews and hundreds of speeches to business audiences.

    Prior to forming macronomics, Graeme was Director of Economics and Prosperity Studies at the Legatum Institute, focused on the drivers of prosperity across the globe.

    Between 1997 and 2013 he worked as Chief Economist and Director of Policy at the Institute of Directors (IoD), where he was also a Main Board Director. The IoD represents around 40,000 business leaders in the UK and overseas.

    Graeme represented the IoD in discussions with the Chancellor of the Exchequer and 10 Downing Street.

    Earlier in his career he was Chief UK Economist and Chief International Economist, at The Henley Centre for Forecasting. He was also Economic Adviser to the Scottish Provident Investment Group.

  • Rikard Papp

    Head of Sales - Europe Iggesund Paperboard, Part of the Holmen Group, The Netherlands

    Straight out of University Rikard joined CEPIFINE (Confederation of European Fine Paper Industries) in 2001 which today is better known as Eurograph. Following 2+ years at CEPIFINE Rikard joined International Paper where he held various positions within Marketing and Strategic Planning, both in Brussels, Belgium, and in Warsaw, Poland. In 2012 Rikard joined the Swedish company, Iggesund Paperboard, a company within the Holmen group. Iggesund Paperboard focuses, through its strong brands Invercote and Incada, on premium segments within the packaging and graphical market. Rikards current responsibilities lies within sales where he is responsible for the European Sales organization. Rikard is a Swedish national and holds a Master’s degree in Gastronomy from Umeå University as well as a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Stockholm University. In 2016 Rikard received his MBA degree from the Stockholm School of Economics. Rikard, his fiancée and 9 month old daughter resides in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

  • Ramon Rohe

    Business Development Manager Packaging / Printing & Writing Omya AG, Switzerland

    1999 Chemical Engineer FH München, 1999-2002 Production Engineer and Sales at Cham Paper, CH

    2002-2004 Product Manager, AKW, DE, 2004-2008 Coating Expert, m-real, CH, 2008- Business Development, Omya, CH

  • André Schäbel

    Director New Business Sales Google Central Europe

    Since André Schäbel joined Google in 2006, he has built, grown and led several sales teams across the EMEA region(DACH, Nordics, France). As Director of New Business Sales at Google for Central Europe, André currently oversees a team of new business development consultants for DACH and CEE markets.

    André holds an MBA in International Management from HHL, Leipzig Graduate School of Management. He has more than 15 years of experience in IT & Online Media. After having worked in Frankfurt (Germany), Sydney (Australia), Dublin (Ireland), André lives now in Hamburg (Germany) with his wife and their 3 children.


  • Dr. Wolfgang A. Schmidt

    Manager IP/Patents Schoeller Technocell GmbH & Co. KG

    Wolfgang A. Schmidt, born 1954, holds a Ph.D. in inorganic and solid state chemistry from the University of Siegen, Germany.

    His professional career in the industry started 1984 at Agfa-Gevaert AG in Leverkusen, Germany, where he worked as R&D project leader and manager for silver halide photographic paper and film. In 2000 he was appointed leader of the applications department for consumer imaging.

    Early 2004, Wolfgang switched to specialty paper manufacturer Felix Schoeller jr, Osnabrück, Germany, first working as senior project manager in R&D for imaging products. Since 2010, he is manager of IP/patents at Schoeller Technocell, also responsible for basic R&D and for innovation projects with external partners und public funding. Wolfgang’s technological background spans from the fields of silver halide technology, film and paper coating, image and print quality and permanence to nano- and surface technology. His present focus is on imaging and digital printing media as well as on printing technologies and substrates for technical applications, especially in the emerging field of printed electronics. He is inventor or co-inventor of 25 patents or patent applications.


  • Sean Smyth

    Print Consultant Smithers Pira, UK

    Sean Smyth has spent over 25 years in the industry in senior technology positions for a variety of print businesses across the supply chain, in hands on and consultancy roles. He helps companies make money through the appropriate use of technology.

    Sean has a deep knowledge of the global print market, and a key member of the team providing quantitative market data and forecasts for the printing, paper and packaging industry. He authors off-the-shelf market studies and provides strategic consultancy services to a range of clients across the value chain.

    Sean has a strong background in appropriate application of technology to print, implementing digital print systems, MIS and workflows to take time and cost out of the print supply chain. In 1994 he became Technical Director of Rexam, where the first colour digital presses in the UK were installed and he has extensive experience of digital printing. He has written many books and market studies on the future, print technology and digital print, including Smithers Pira's flagship title "The Print & Production Manual" and the "Future of Global Print Markets".

    He has held senior management roles for several large and small print and print management companies where he applied systems and technology to improve efficiencies. He has a very strong background in digital printing, for users and suppliers. Currently he acts as a non-executive Director at REAL Digital International, the pioneer of high volume inkjet and electrophotographic print. He is the editor of "Digital Labels and Packaging" launched in 2010 for Whitmar Publications, and contributes regular technology columns and articles for the Trade Press and Smithers Pira journals

  • Gary Thomson

    Senior Market Consultant EMGE & Co Ltd., UK

    Gary Thomson, 47, has been observing and analysing paper markets since 1993, when he began his career at the PPI This Week paper market newsletter.

    Over the past quarter of a century, he has commented on paper markets as the Editor or Managing Editor of three global paper industry publications: PPI This Week, Papermaker and International Paper World, followed by more than a decade as a forecaster at EMGE.

    Over the years, he has analysed markets including Market Pulp, Wastepaper, Newsprint, Publication Papers, Fine Papers, Corrugated Packaging and Folding Boxboard.

    Gary became EMGE's Senior Market Consultant over 13 years ago, and he plays a central role in the company's market research projects and forecast reports, as well as presenting EMGE’s forecasts at industry conferences around the world.

    In his free time, Gary enjoys cycling, cooking and volunteer work.

  • Ulf Tillman

    Wood Supply & Forestry Project Leader Sustainability Paper Expert IKEA of Sweden AB, Sweden

    Ulf Tillman, born 1965, married to Anna, 2 children. Since September 2013 Mr. Tillman is working as Sustainability Paper Expert and Wood Supply & Forestry Project Leader at IKEA of Sweden, in Älmhult, Sweden.

    Before joining IKEA Mr. Tillman successfully spent more than 20 year in the Pulp&Paper Industry holding positions in R&D, Production Operations as well as Head Office Management positions in the areas of Sustainability, Energy, Healt&Safety and Risk Management for SCA and DS Smith.

    Mr. Tillman is of Swedish Nationality has a background of Chemical Engineering at the Lund Institute of Technology in Sweden.

  • Ruud van den Berg

    Senior Vice President, Magazines, Merchants & Office UPM Paper ENA (Europe & North America)

    Ruud van den Berg, born in the Netherlands in 1960, can look back on 30 years of experience in paper business. Holding a Master in Business Administration, Ruud entered the paper industry in 1984, initially working in the sales and exports department for KNP (Royal Dutch Paper mills). Within KNP, Ruud had several positions and changed responsibilities and location several times.

    After the acquisition of the Austrian paper producer Leykam, Ruud became responsible for their sales office Germany with locations Aachen and Hannover. In 1997, Sappi acquired KNP Leykam.

    In 1999, Ruud joined the Italian producer of Graphic Paper Burgo and was appointed Managing Director of their Benelux operation having office in Brussels.

    In 2001, Ruud was headhunted by UPM, appointed Sales Director Fine Papers for the German market, with location Dörpen in Germany.

    In 2003 he was promoted to the position as Vice President Graphic Papers Merchants Fine

    Paper Division followed by another promotion two years later, becoming Senior Vice President Sales & Marketing Fine Papers in UPM’s Helsinki-based headquarters.

    After UPM adopted an entirely new business structure in autumn 2008, merging the three divisions of Magazine, Newsprint and Fine & Speciality Papers into one - the new Paper Business Group - Ruud has extended his responsibilities by taking on the position as Senior Vice President Sales, Paper Business Group.

    Late 2013 UPM implemented a new business structure resulting in Ruud being appointed Senior Vice President, Magazine Publishing & Advertising, UPM Paper Europe & North America with full P/L responsibility for a turnover of approximately €4 billion with Headquarter in Augsburg.

    In September 2016 UPM’s fine paper and magazine business was merged. Ruud got the responsibility to lead this new strategic business unit and was appointed Senior Vice President, Magazines, Merchants & Office, UPM Paper ENA.

    Ruud is married and has two daughters.