Lindal Group have announced the retirement of their John Hopkins, UK sales director, who will be leaving on 24 May after 40 years with the company.
He will be replaced by Paul Wharton, former global director of sales development at Tetra Pak International.
Based at the Lindal Leighton Buzzard site, Hopkins has worked in various sales positions during his tenure and says he has seen the company grow from 20 to 180 people and witnessed its exponential growth in sales turnover over the time he has been there.
In 2004, as key account director, Hopkins was instrumental in securing the business of the company’s largest customer, Unilever, which prompted further company growth and the means to establish a presence in further regions across the globe.
Hopkins said, “I have whole-heartedly enjoyed my career and there is not a thing I would change. Working with Unilever has been one of the highlights of my career and I will miss the people there, as well as at Lindal. I have been part of some exciting developments that have transformed the business over the years, and now it is time to spend more time with my family.”
Julian Platt, global procurement manager for actuators and valves at Unilever has worked with Hopkins since 2006. Platt said, “For me, John has always been the perfect account manager for a customer to have. He is proactive, fair, and has excellent communication,” he continued, “We have also worked together to grow the Unilever business with Lindal in [the European Union and Latin America], which has been a benefit to both of us and our companies. I wish him all the very best for a long and happy retirement – he will be missed.”
Hopkin’s replacement, Paul Wharton, has extensive experience in both the packaging industry and the implementation of successful customer management strategies which he will apply in his new position, to further drive new business growth. Wharton has spent several months with Hopkins during the transition period, and said, “It’s given me an incredible insight working alongside John and it’s clear to see what a great legacy he is going to leave behind. I’m now looking forward to continuing his success by delivering a customer-focused strategy based on world class key account management and utilising Lindal’s extensive resources in product innovation and industry expertise.”