On Wednesday 4 July, Robert Davison, chairman of the Alexir Partnership, received a BPIF Award for his outstanding contribution to the UK printing industry at the House of Lords. His evangelical vision and knowledge in the folding carton industry are unrivalled and this was duly recognised by the trade association for the printing industry. He was presented the award by Charles Jarrold, CEO of the BPIF, at an All-Party Parliamentary Group reception on the sunny terrace at the House of Lords. The reception was hosted by Baroness Donaghy who highlighted the economic importance of print.
Charles Jarrold stated, ‘It was wonderful to see so many members, lords, ladies and MPs enjoying a drink together on the terrace at the House of Lords. The APPG provides a unique opportunity for us to bring together those in the industry with government to ensure that we can forge a better dialogue. I would like to congratulate Robert on his award.’
Robert Davison founded Alexir Packaging in 1989 and under his lead has widened the business proposition into the Alexir Partnership, with a turnover of £30 million. The Alexir Partnership now covers carton design and manufacture, packaging sourcing, contract manufacturing, co-packing and gifting. In fact it is the only UK business in the food sector that can create, package and pack products from design to delivery within one enterprise. Solving customers’ needs is the main motivation and with five specialist divisions within the partnership it can offer a unique turnkey solution, with one point of contact responsible for the smooth running of all projects.
Robert Davison said, ‘The UK manufacturing industry employs 2.7 million people and we are now the eighth largest industrial nation. It is often an industry overlooked by schools and colleges alike and, as the industrial workforce is getting older, we are struggling to attract young workers. In the packaging industry, we have been particularly hit by this decline and it is one of my missions to address this shortfall and regenerate an ageing industry. This, in particular, is one of my drivers and I am delighted to have been presented with this prestigious award.’
Robert has always seen the BPIF as a vitally important cog in the printing industry and has recently moved from chairman to president of BPIF Cartons, an off-shoot trade association representing the equally important carton converters in the UK. He has been fundamental in raising the profile of BPIF Cartons and has been particularly keen to develop training schemes as well as an e-learning platform for the carton industry, in order to attract and keep a younger generation in the industry.
Jon Clark, general manager BPIF Cartons, said: ‘It is fantastic to see Robert being recognised for his outstanding contribution and commitment to the carton industry. His passion for cartons is truly remarkable and he is a great ambassador for the industry . He is a firm believer in promoting training and to encourage younger people to enter our industry. As chairman and latterly president of BPIF Cartons his legacy to the industry will be long remembered.’
In his role at the Alexir Partnership both innovation and sustainability have always been close to Robert’s heart and consequently the company is recognised in the carton industry for being at the forefront of food packaging for a sustainable planet. Robert was also instrumental in piloting digital print technology for folding cartons and Alexir was the first major carton packaging manufacturer in the UK to install a digital press in Europe to print cartonboard up to 610 microns. He is chairman of the newly founded Digital Packaging Partnership, a pan European collaboration of Xerox users of digital technology for folding cartons.
The Alexir Partnership comprising Alexir Design, Alexir Packaging, Alexir International, Alexir Co-Packing and Alexir Brands operates between two production facilities in Uckfield, East Sussex and Edenbridge in Kent, where it is the town’s largest employer. Alexir Packaging is also a member of the International Packaging Group, Association (IPG), a global affiliation of folding carton and packaging producers and world leading suppliers to the packaging industry.