THE PEOPLE OF BLAKE
Now operating in multiple locations across the World, we are proud to provide you with the ultimate in both service and expertise.
Get to know our various departments and learn a little more about the staff that are so integral to the success of Blake!
Meet Michael: Blake's CEO and a driven, motivated individual. Never at a loss for ingenious ideas, Michael believes there is no such thing as 'can’t be done'. He is always focused on Blake's strategic direction and vision, and his constant innovation ensures we remain ahead of the competition at all times!
"I would call myself a visionary with an impulsive desire to be better, and an inbred passion for sales and marketing."
Meet Graham, our Managing Director, in charge of keeping us all in check! With a forward-focus Graham utilises his wealth of experience to ensure Blake continues to strive forward as market leaders. Always one to be light-hearted, Graham’s jovial side is renowned and somewhat notorious.
“I am privileged to have a job where I love what I do, working with a team who are creative, knowledgeable and go above and beyond to deliver excellence always”.
The Director responsible for all our innovation and development, Tim is particularly passionate about our sustainability and corporate social responsibility, and ensures these vital values are the beating heart of the Blake organisation.
"We aim for absolute sustainability in everything we do. Every touch point: from the first contact with Blake, through to the delivery of the final product. We have to echo consistency."
Meet Clive, our Financial Director. Clive is responsible for all Financial and Legal obligations, ensuring as a business we are fully equipped to continuously move forward in exceeding customer and stakeholder expectations. Having been a founding member of the Blake Board, he has enjoyed the journey of Blake’s continuous innovation, from conception to present day, to become a market leader.
“I firmly believe that you can’t be effective in business if you underestimate the importance of accurate and on time Financial Reporting”.
Adrian is one of Blake’s long-standing team-members, with over 6 years’ experience in print and procurement. Having worked in a variety of departments, Adrian has acquired a broad array of knowledge to benefit his role as Bespoke Production Specialist.
“I’m very methodical and organised, I like to check and then check again…on occasions get someone else to double check my double check too”.
Over the course of his impressive 17 years with us, Alun has built a fantastic knowledge of the Blake products and supply chain and has had the opportunity to visit each and every one of our suppliers, building strong relationships. As our Quality & Compliance Manager, his many responsibilities include conducting regular supplier reviews and ensuring our suppliers deliver according to specifications.
“I’m an Adult Volunteer and the Commanding Officer of Yeovil Sea and Royal Marine Cadets, and oversee the development mentally, physically, technically and spiritually of 95+ cadets, offering a fantastic experience and opportunity to gain valuable life skills! I find this very rewarding passing on my skill set from my time in the military with the ROYAL Tank Regiment.”
As Business Development Manager, Blake is an integral part of our solutions team. Thriving on being an out of the box thinker and problem solver, Blake has a creative adaptability to achieve key solutions. His competitive nature and passion for enacting sustainable packaging solutions ensures we are at the forefront of the industry.
“I’m a tenacious and driven person that actively endeavours to provide a fun and creative solution”
As our Senior Creative Designer, Brian is the go to for all things visual. Brian’s strong belief that design is a fundamental problem-solving tool, aids the forming of relationships between ideas and reality whilst improving the connections between people and the products they use.
“I enjoy smooth project management from initial strategy to final delivery, with effective communication”.
An in-depth knowledge of envelopes, postal packaging products and print developed over 25 years makes Cat an invaluable member of the Blake team. As Office and Sales Manager in our North Manchester hub, she does a fantastic job of prospecting and growing customer accounts through product knowledge, problem solving and rapport building.
"I'm shaped by travel; music and flying T6 WW2 trainer planes, doing aerobatics in Florida... I also have a Richard III obsession and am fascinated by his real character and the victors rewriting history to suit their own end – I love to delve until I know what makes people tick!"
Forever known as the one who loves to chat! I love to spend my day engaging with those around me whilst building a good rapport with our customers
As our Operations Manager, Chris’ role is very logistical, insofar as ensuring all of our deliveries and stock are in the right place at the right time. Chris is eagle-eyed when it comes to process management, covering every eventuality to guarantee customers receive their orders when expected.
“I believe good process management allows to successfully fulfil customer expectations”
Crystal, is an integral part of our Customer Services team here at Blake. Her positivity allows for an excellent repour with customers, creating an enjoyable experience when dealing with any range of queries.
“I like to have a laugh and spend lots of time with my son and ever-growing family”.
My role is customer service co-ordinator. I bring 15+ years of experience in retail customer services into a role that I thoroughly enjoy. I love a challenge, but even more so enjoy being part of a solution. In my spare time I can usually be found near the ocean, in nature, skateboarding, surfing or buried elbows deep in an engine bay.
Known as our 'Samples Lady', Ella's main responsibility is to pick, pack and post sample requests to our customers! Putting in a tremendous amount of work behind the scenes, she also sends out all our catalogues, mailers and other marketing materials, and is famed for her excellent time management and efficiency skills.
"I always try my best and I love to exceed everyone's expectations."
Meet George, our Import and Product Implementation Manager. George’s knack for logistics allows him to implement successful transportation processes in a dynamic environment. With a focus on ensuring our products are industry-leading, George relishes the opportunity to bring new products to life.
“I like to make sure the sales team are happy with the effectiveness of the supply of products”
Overflowing with personality is our Georgi! With a wealth of Customer Service experience, not to mention a long history in the paper and forest products industry, Georgi is highly skilled in negotiation, account management, direct sales and sales process, and can also boast a Bachelor of Arts degree focussed in Textile and Surface Decoration.
"Often known to make crazy noises! Famously…my turkey impression…gobble gobble gobble!"
Hayley is an integral member of our Customer Service team. With an abundance of customer service experience, Hayley is able to establish great relationships with our customers. With a love for solving problems, Hayley is best known for her ever-positive mindset.
“In my spare time I enjoy making special occasion cakes and spending time with my little boy”.
Meet India, our Marketing Manager. India’s creative flair and background in design ensure that all of our brand communications go out with a sense of personality. With a matching passion for improving processes, cost reduction and increasing productivity and profitability her analytical endeavour provides us great industry insights.
“I have a passion for design and client acquisition strategies”.
An inconspicuous yet invaluable member of the team, not only does Justin have the role of Production Accountant, but he is our International Accounts Manager for the USA and Europe too! Justin's skillset lies in management accounting, production costings and project planning. And in his spare time?
"My hobbies are 3D printing and astronomy."
Karen has been with Blake Accounts Department for a good many years, where she takes responsibility for managing our Accounts Payable ledger. From loading invoices onto the system through to making sure everything is paid, Karen ensures everything is running smoothly!
"According to my husband, spending money is a skill I’ve managed to perfect over the years...especially if its someone else’s!"
In his role of Sourcing & Innovations Manager, Kurt is a tremendous support to our Business Development Managers Blake Barter and Tim Smyth, sourcing any non-standard, bespoke items required for their direct to consumer sales.
"I excel at supplier engagement, communication and making a difference!"
Meet Lucy, our Key Account Manager. Ever-eager to learn, Lucy is undertaking a Sales Apprenticeship to further her skills around: account management, customer engagement, negotiation as well as product and industry knowledge.
“I enjoy connecting with my customers and working to find the best products and solutions for them”.
As our Transport Coordinator, Mark has a very logistical and process-led approach, and is responsible for ensuring that all of our deliveries are organised carefully and dispatched on time.
“Making sure our customers get what they want, when they want it, is my goal”.
Nicole's role of Office Manager covers an impressive range of responsibilities! Not only does she manage our Customer Service team and look after the HR function of the company, but she also collaborates with the Department Heads to ensure all our teams are utilising the same processes.
"I’ve been with Blake for 15 years now, in many different roles and areas of the company. I would say that what I bring is a general understanding of how things work between departments and the processes that are involved. The only thing I haven’t mastered in this time is a convincing fake laugh for Graham’s rubbish jokes!"
Head of Plain Stock Sales at our Yeovil Headquarters, Ralph is passionate about his job and loves being part of a winning team! He has an excellent ability to understand customer requirements and always prides himself on his attention to detail: two qualities which he believes are essential to building great working relationships!
"They don’t call me an Envelope Anorak for nothing! It’s taken years to build my knowledge of our products and the industry."
From his base in our Manchester hub, Richard does a fantastic job of managing, motivating and empowering our various Regional Sales people around the country to collaborate together and succeed. An evidence-based strategic thinker who embraces change for the better, he is highly skilled at defining and implementing - and innovating! - sales plans.
"A grumpy introvert but Master Illusionist (don't let on to the team!)"
Careful and methodical, and someone who likes to get things right first time, Richard can always be relied upon to perform in his area of Bepoke & Print Procurement.
His conscientious approach extends to his spare time occupations too, when he loves taking part in triathlons, running and improving his swimming both in the pool and open water.
"I do, however, have an irrational fear of sharks!"
Lighting up the office with her cheery smile, Sara's enthusiasm and motivation make her a highly popular member of the Blake family! An excellent team player, she is dependable, systematic and comitted, and always goes above and beyond in her role as Finance Assistant.
"I'm always smiling, and like to laugh!"
As someone who is always organised and delights in paying great attention to detail, Sharon truly excels in her role as Print Production Coordinator.
Despite working remotely from our Leeds hub, we hear plenty from her because, as she would say,
"I'm very good at nagging!"
Storm plays the important role of Executive Assistant to our CEO Michael Barter, AKA her dad! Organised and efficient, she does an outstanding job of keeping him in order - something that most others would struggle to achieve!
Tim is our Business Development Manager for all our Corporate and Contractual Business. A deep thinker, he is excellent at understanding client challenges and providing them with a solution! Somebody who loves to meet new people, his strengths lie in building strong, lasting relationships.
"In my spare time, I love to spend time outdoors exploring new places - particularly the South West coast!"
Meet Tom, our Warehouse Supervisor. Being responsible for day-to-day warehouse activities Tom ensures that all stock is ready to be dispatched on time.
“I believe time-management is key, allowing us the best opportunity for reaching targets and ensuring happy customers”.
For our Facilities Manager Tony, ensuring a secure working environment where all employees are able to return home safe and well at the end of each day is of paramount importance. A bit of a Jack-of-all-trades on the quiet, he shares his impressive range of experiences below:
"Trained as a mechanical and electrical engineer, I started my career as an Agricultural Engineer, before moving onto construction machine and tool repairs, and then into the power generation industry! I would say that my working career has been one of interesting and rewarding experiences."
As our E-Commerce Business Development Manager, Yorke is responsible for trend analysis and ensuring that we remain relevant across an array of web platforms. Always enthusiastic and keen to develop, Yorke has developed a meticulous eye for detail. Although, not one known for his tea making skills!
“I’m competitive in nature, and love to be part of the winning team”.
Zarah is one of the most long-standing members of the Blake team, which has given her 16 years' worth of invaluable experience working with our customers in anything envelope, packaging and print related.
"I believe that the relationships of customers and suppliers are more than just a transaction. You need a good working partnership and mutual understanding to achieve the best results, and what’s better, we can enjoy ourselves at the same time with some good humour and fun!"