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28.04.2021
Latest News KM News and People / Meet the team

John’s our ‘champion’ on the international scene

When the club you support have been "Champions of the World", a young man's sights may already be set on the global arena.

It is, therefore, perhaps no wonder that John Shipley is now a vastly experienced international senior sales executive, currently enjoying his 27th year in the packaging industry. 

John is the Business Unit Director for KM's Oceana & Asia Business Units, responsible for Sales, Marketing and P&L.

Like the "beautiful game" with its ups and downs and twists and turns, John's career path has been packed with interest.

He started his career in packaging at Alusuisse Lonza straight out of university. Initially, John was responsible for selling aluminium foil - converter, container, and house foil. 

Valuable experience

He then moved into the value-added part of the business, selling printed, coloured, coated, and embossed unsupported foil and laminates into the global confectionery, dairy, and tobacco industries. It was here that John got to know KM Packaging, who were one of his customers.

During John's 13-year service, Alusuisse Lonza changed ownership several times - Lawson Marden Packaging, Alcan Packaging, Novelis, and Hindalco.

More valuable experience was gained when John then joined Floeter Flexibles. The company was a global leader in the manufacture of pre-made stand up pouches, flat bags, and reel stock in high barrier retort (and non-retort) packaging for human food, pet food, agro / chemical, pharma, and medical markets. 

Ampac acquired Floeter and ELAG, then merged with Prolamina to form ProAmpac before John decided to move on after eight years, when KM came knocking.

Excellent reputation

John is now into his sixth year at KM, helping the company become a leading supplier of flexible packaging. The core business is specialty heat-sealable lidding films for the frozen, chilled, and ambient ready meals and convenience food industry.

KM exports into many markets, including Australia, where John has been instrumental in building an excellent reputation as a trusted and knowledgeable long-term supply partner with an effective supply chain.

John said: "I am passionate about packaging and the virtues of plastics. And I get very frustrated with greenwashing!

"My areas of expertise include key account management, new business development, innovation development, and supply chain integration. 

"I enjoy sharing advice, recommendations, matchmaking, and expanding my network with like-minded individuals.

"And I can honestly say that working at KM has been the highlight of my career. This is a great company to work for. We have a real entrepreneurial spirit, with a focus on knowledge, integrity, and customer service. Plus, I have the support of some amazing colleagues!"

Lifelong supporter

Aside from flexible packaging, John's passions are family and friends, and football. He is a lifelong supporter of Wolverhampton Wanderers and said: "Both my grandad and dad told me it was my birth right, so this is an affliction which I have passed down to my two sons!"

They can all be proud in the knowledge that Wolves gained the accolade of "Champions of the World" in 1954. That was when, as English champions, they took on and beat Honved, whose team contained seven of the Hungarian team that beat England 6-3 the previous year at Wembley, causing a huge shock across the football world.

After that game, it was suggested that a championship should be organised featuring the top clubs in Europe, the idea took off, and the European Cup was launched during the following season.

The rest is history, for Wolves and the Shipley family.

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