Truck and Track Summer 2023 Summer 2023 Truck and Track 45 PERSONALITY PROFILE How did it go at De Longhi? Were you successful? “I eventually took a permanent role at De Longhi and, after a couple of years in the warehouse, moved to an office position in admin support. I was then promoted to become responsible for management of the De Longhi Irish subsidiary and, at 21, took over the role of Warehouse and Distribution Manager, before becoming the overall Logistics Manager for the company. So yes, you could say that De Longhi gave me a real opportunity to develop as a Logistics professional.” And how did your move into Pallet Networking with UPN come about? “That’s where fate came in again. I met UPN Founder and Chairman - Martyn Chapman. Martyn was a Panic Link Franchisee, and he was actually working for me, handling De Longhi parcel shipments. Through our mutual love of Liverpool FC, we established a solid working relationship over many years. “After 17 years at De Longhi, a company and role I really loved, opportunity knocked. I was offered a big promotion, but it did mean I needed to relocate and re-establish myself but it didn’t feel right. “By that time, Martyn had founded and was expanding his highly successful new pallet network at a rate of knots. It was an expansion I was close to through my connections with Martyn. UPN was going well. “I used Martyn as a sounding board for this career-defining quandary, and Martyn surprised me with his inputs. “Have you ever thought of working for me?”, was Martyn’s response. “I need a good Commercial/Operations Director and I think you’re just the man”. Fast forward 17 years, and I’m now UPN Managing Director having been in the position since 2015.” What’s different in the Pallet Network Sector now? How has it changed over that time? “I’ve seen many sector changes over the years: the improvement in the credibility of pallet networks as a logistics option, the improved systemisation within networks, mergers and acquisitions, new technology, the impressive growth in volumes within the sector and the growth of the B2C market. “Its definitely a much more professional and mature sector now with an established reputation for service quality and reliability at the forefront of which is UPN. “Cutting edge IT systems are making a great difference for UPN members and we are growing strongly and steadily as a network. Indeed, in the 17 years I have been here, we have grown 800%. Our membership now includes over 90 high quality hauliers across the UK. “The UPN journey through the millennium has seen many changes