DS Smith is a leading packaging company within the consumer goods space. With revenues of £600m, it operates from 35 locations, employing 3,600 people.

The Challenge

On exit from the group, the UK division of DS Smith was the market leading supplier of corrugated packaging with over 28% market share. Before we took over leadership, the UK businesses were delivering below average levels of return for the wider group. There was little revenue growth above GDP in a market with low expectations of return.

The Solution

We developed a business strategy that reflected the customer demands within DS Smith UK.

We ensured the right people were in the right roles and helped to develop their leadership talents. This also included the development of a commercial excellence program to drive improvements across every UK business unit.

During our involvement, we exited and acquired over 10 businesses to simplify the operations and strengthen core markets and capabilities. We also introduced the “future lab” programme which has nurtured industry changing ideas into reality.

The Outcome

  • Market share growth from 23% to 28% – growing consistently more than the competition in each year
  • Led the commercial excellence programme which increased selling price by 8% and delivered a 2% margin improvement year-on-year.
  • Implementation of new management structure to deliver long term sustainable improvement across all areas allowing the operations to continue to grow whilst acquiring and re-structuring the organisation.
  • Instigated the development of analytics software that has ensured some of our key FMCG customers can see before launch how their product lines will perform in the ever growing and complex retailer landscape

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