Niclas Ekström new CEO of Emballator VäxjöplastPosted 2020-10-01
When studying international economics at Lund University, young Niclas Ekström got an exciting summer job as a marketing assistant at Tetra Pak Austria. He really enjoyed his time there, and later on he got the opportunity to do his degree project on international business models at Tetra Pak. After graduating, he started working as a business controller at the company’s head office in Lund. This was the start of a long career in the global packaging group.
Now the time has come to join the Emballator team.
“I obviously do not change employer very often. But I am a curious person who wants to develop. I really want to share what I have learned, in terms of strategic and operational work and personnel management”, says Niclas Ekström.
The time at Tetra Pak included a number of international assignments with leading positions within business development, innovation and production. The first, as Area Manager in Eastern Europe, involved a focus on marketing, innovation and sales – an interest that developed at the turn of the millennium when he was commissioned as product manager at development center in Italy. In Italy he worked globally with innovation processes linked to caps, customer-unique solutions and product launches. This was followed by a four-year assignment as marketing manager with responsibility for further developing the market in Canada, before the family chose to move back to Sweden and Lund in 2010. Since then, he has been responsible for the Tetra Top business area where the development of new caps and packaging has been an important part of the success. He has also worked with the Group’s global growth initiatives.
At Emballator Niclas Ekström will lead a company that specializes in openings and closures. It feels like ”a match made in heaven”?
“Yes, I do see many development opportunities within Emballator. It is great fun to work with openings because it is such a consumer-friendly product with high demands on functionality and hygiene; everything from openability to safety.”
Emballator Växjöplast has the opportunity to grow in Sweden as well as internationally. To succeed, it is important to prioritize five areas:
”Working with the right segments, innovative development for existing and new customers, sustainability from a recycling and CO2 perspective, corporate culture and quality focus with zero tolerance for errors – it is a hygiene factor,” says Niclas Ekström.
Being an attentive and learning organization that listens to its customers and consumers is crucial, says Niclas Ekström:
“Seeing and respecting each other is a prerequisite. Everyone should dare to take initiatives knowing that it is allowed to make mistakes. We lift each other, we succeed as a team – and when we fail, we learn. ”
Niclas Ekström has recently moved into an apartment in Växjö’s new landmark, the ”Icon” House.
“Our children are grown, and now my wife and I think it feels right and exciting to take a new step. When possible, we also love to visit our holiday home in Åhus. It has always been the place to which we have returned to between assignments abroad, ”says Niclas, who admits that he is a real packaging nerd.
So, which is your personal packaging favorite?
”Bottles with flip cap and one-hand opening. I think the one-hand opening is ingenious. You can grab the bottle with one hand, open it and squeeze out what’s inside!”
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