Martyn
Martyn Kidd

Director, Managing

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“We always deliver on our promises”

Martyn spent the early part of his career in a variety of photocopier and device sales roles with Agfa, Konica and finally Danka. In 2003 he and Bill Todd decided to strike out on their own and create a business which would do things a different way from the commoditised, product sales approach that was so prevalent in the industry at that time.  The result was Karlson, pioneers of a service-based approach to print management and a commitment to bridge the gap between print hardware and IT.

A key part of Martyn’s role is to manage Karlson’s hardware supply chain and he has built strong relationships at all levels within these companies, from UK sales and support teams to executive management.

Martyn’s vision for Karlson was to fundamentally change the dynamics of the industry from installing hardware to developing the long-term service-based relationships which would deliver the best result for Karlson and its customers. Delivering this vision meant not just building a service mentality but backing it up with the IT and other skills needed to make it a reality. Now he believes customers at last have the ability to make a real and informed choice about their print strategy.

From day one Karlson have deliberately employed people who are in tune with the philosophy of the founders and Martyn is quick to acknowledge that the success of the business to date is testament to the excellence of the team that he and Bill have built around them.

Bill
Bill Todd

Director, Sales

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“We always do the right thing for the client”

Bill co-founded Karlson having worked in sales and sales management for Konica and Danka for several years. During this time copier and printer technology had become more and more digitalised and it was becoming very much an IT commodity rather than the traditional office facility.

Watching this evolution unfold was the catalyst that inspired him to develop a new way of providing print technology to businesses. He had a vision to provide a ‘’software driven, supported by hardware’’ approach, with a managed service wrap around.  He believed this would leverage a higher level of conversation with clients and generate bigger and better opportunities for them to save money and increase productivity.

His relationships within the industry gave Karlson a strong foundation to pilot and prove this new way of thinking and since then Karlson has employed a number of key individuals that have inspired further development of this strategy.  Bill’s work in the field with the Karlson team now provide new and existing customers with a dynamic and consultative approach to maximising the potential benefits of Karlson’s solutions.

Bill considers that Karlson’s success is down to their focus on recruiting and deploying the very best blend of internal and external expertise.  It is this, along with a continuing focus on remaining manufacturer agnostic that ensures Karlson can always provide their customers with the solution that is right for them, something which is often in contrast to the rest of the industry.

Steve
Steve Todd

Director, Marketing & Channels

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“We guarantee all our customers sustainable long term value.  As they change during the life of the contract so will we”

Steve brings a wealth of IT experience to the Karlson value proposition and as such embodies the Karlson philosophy of transforming the print industry.

After working with IT services companies such as IBM PC pioneer suppliers Spartex, Managed Services companies such as SHL Systemhouse and EDS, Steve in 2000 co-founded ecommerce start-up GlobalServe, a web-based service approach that evolved into cloud computing. He also developed a deep understanding of the procurement and supply chain processes that underpin companies’ ownership of physical assets.  After leaving Globalserve to set up on his own he was approached by the founders of Karlson to bring his IT consultancy background into the development of the Karlson approach to managed print services.  Putting print and IT together created a new kind of business which is strongly differentiated in a highly competitive marketplace.

Since joining Karlson in 2008 Steve has headed the strategy, marketing, channel side of the business and has been very close to a number of the significant customers wins over the past 6 years.

Steve’s major contribution is challenging the standard practices of the marketplace, bringing a fresh pair of eyes to his fellow directors’ experience in the industry and drawing on his experiences in IT services.  This is how Karlson can continue to enhance their differentiated approach in an increasingly competitive marketplace.  By focussing on delivering sustainable long term value, Steve believes that not only can Karlson help our customers reduce costs and improve productivity; we can also help derive greater competitive advantage in their own respective markets.

Christian
Christian Downes

Director, Commercial

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Christian agreed to partner with Karlson from the outset and brought with him a vital skill set that would secure some important new business wins during the early stages of Karlson’s success.

Along with Bill and Martyn, Christian’s initial focus was to develop the sales team and to generate further new business opportunity. However, Christian’s extensive knowledge and years of experience in the leasing aspect of the industry now provides Karlson with a strong commercial directorship. Global financial constraints have had a massive impact to the banking and capital finance businesses over the past 5 years. Christian’s database of knowledge in this field has been a key enabler towards building the right financial solutions for Karlson’s customers in order to navigate around and overcome these financial constraints and ensure our customers receive real value.

Tobin
Tobin Jones

Director, Financial

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“I enjoy working with new or early stage businesses, where my role is to support companies to achieve their full financial potential. A lot of people think of financers as cost controllers, but I prefer to see the role as supporting growth. Karlson is at an exciting stage in its growth story so it’s a perfect time for me to come on board.”

With a background in fast growth SME’s and international businesses, Tobin brings over 25 years of top tier finance experience to Karlson. As such, he is perfectly aligned with Karlson’s overarching mission to transform the print industry.

Following a varied career, Tobin is used to dealing with overseas jurisdictions, including the US and sub-Saharan Africa. As well as working on infrastructure projects and dealing with various international tax jurisdictions Tobin enjoyed setting up back office functions and systems for businesses both in the UK and overseas. In a previous CFO role in a start-up private security company, Tobin helped raise finance and develop internal finance and administrative teams. In under three years the company turnover grew to $50 million per annum, and a total of over 500 employees.

Together, Karlson and Tobin will continue to enhance Karlson’s differentiated approach in an increasingly competitive marketplace, by focussing on delivering sustainable long term value to their customers.

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