Meet the Findel team.

Chris Mahady 

Read Chris’ bio >

Mark Whittaker
Deputy MD / CFO

Read Mark’s bio >

Martin Jones

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Nigel Hunter

Read Nigel’s bio >

Paul Clarke
Sales Director

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Sue Careless
Ops Director

Read Sue’s bio >

Zoe Reuter
CX Director

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Gary McDowell

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Meet the Manutan team.

Xavier Guichard

Pierre-Olivier Brial

Beth Malkin, Commercial Director

As Commercial Director at Findel, Beth’s world is centered around product, product, product! With over 20 years experience in Buying, Merchandising and Supply, Beth brings strong commercial experience. Her mission and that of her team is to source the best product, at the right price, in the right quantity and delivered at the right time, ensuring we consistently delight and satisfy our customers.

Working cross-functionally Beth has led people through successful and momentous changes agendas, empowering her teams to succeed and strive for excellence… With her finger constantly on the pulse she believes in never standing still! Driven by data Beth loves a good spreadsheet! However, she also believes there is a lot to be said for good intuition, unique insights, spotting emerging trends and chartering new territories. To achieve this, she adopts a functional blend of analytics with strong people skills, thereby developing supportive and collaborative teams that relish a challenge and work hard to deliver ambitious commercial initiatives.

When not at work, Beth has 3 passions; her family (Husband, two children and a ragdoll cat). Yoga (but is too impatient for the relaxing kind) and Travel…Beth is always planning a new adventure or a new place to explore!

Linda Nguyenova, Investment Manager

Linda joined the Endless Leeds office as an Investment Executive in October 2018. She initially obtained her ACA qualification at PwC where she gained experience across Assurance, Forensics, Consulting / Operations and was part of the Debt & Capital Advisory team prior to joining Endless.

In her free time, Linda is a keen gym-goer and a ‘yogie’, regularly practicing hot yoga. Linda loves show jumping – she started horse riding at the age of 10 and still tries to spend her weekends with horses. Linda has also recently picked up golf in the hope that she’ll be able to match her Dad’s single-digit handicap though she’s still got a rather long way to go.

She spends most of her holidays visiting her family in the Czech Republic where she grew up.

Pierre Olivers - Chief Executive Officer

After graduating from EDHEC in 1996, he began his career at Bossard consultants. Hired in 2001 by the French company Manutan as Head of e-business, he subsequently took on various management roles within the Group, including the management of European geographical areas.

He joined the Group’s management team in 2011. Since September 2023, he has held the position of Chief Executive Officer. He runs the Group alongside Xavier Guichard, Chairman of Manutan and grandson and son of the company’s founders.

He is also Vice-Chairman of METI (Mouvement des Entreprises de Taille Intermédiaire or medium-sized companies movement) and founded the Club ETI Ile-de-France.

Xavier Guichard – Executive Group Chairman

As a great lover of art in all its forms and particularly keen on contemporary painting, Xavier Guichard is a director driven by the mission of ‘Entrepreneurship for a Better World’.

After graduating from Brest Business School, he worked for Packard Bell and Nec Computers International as a Business Controller before joining the Manutan Group at the age of 29 as Group Management Controller.

In 2005, he became Managing Director of the Scandinavian subsidiaries, then took over the Group’s operations. In November 2011, he was appointed Deputy Chief Executive Officer and then Chief Executive Officer in 2013. Since September 2023, he has held the position of Group Chairman.

Nigel Hunter, CMO

Nigel serves as the Chief Marketing Officer at Findel, overseeing the creative, brand, and digital teams. His role revolves around generating demand for our brands and products.

With a diverse background spanning media, advertising agencies, and in-house work for various clients, Nigel boasts a
well-rounded experience in the entire marketing space and across digital transformation. Recently, his keen interest in
data-driven performance has caused him to go 'back to school', as he continues to delve into the technical opportunities impacting attribution and performance optimisation.

Outside the office, Nigel's a true country boy, hailing from the Yorkshire Dales. He relishes long walks with his dogs, taking advantage of the open spaces where he lives and finally, one of Nigel's hidden hobbies is snowboarding, a pursuit he shares with his younger son.

Gary McDowell, CHRO

As Findel’s HR Director, Gary does more than the usual people stuff. With more than 25 years’ experience in all things HR, he’s obsessed daily with creating a really supportive spirit in the world of Findel by innovating new ways of creating a great colleague experience which is so close to his heart.

Gary loves it when everyone is happy and always wants to help colleagues shine – he gets stuck in when a job needs doing and wants to keep Findel moving forward and for everyone to help each other out now and again.

Gary’s biggest achievement is continuing to build upon the new ways of working at Findel and being the glue that holds things together. He knows he still has bags to do but won’t let up – he just wants to do more better. His team means everything to him and his attention to detail is legendary!

When Gary isn’t caring for the Findel family, he loves spending time with his own, he lives out of the way in Nantwich, has a dog called Hux and he thinks Star Wars is real! For some R&R time he builds Lego with his son and bounces a ball around with his daughter.

Zoe Reuter, CX Director

Zoe is the Customer Experience Director, responsible for making sure that Findel continues to deliver the best possible experience for all of it’s customers and leads our amazing customer-facing teams. Since being appointed as Head of Customer Service in 2011, Zoe has transformed the customer experience which has been pivotal to business growth.

No one day is the same in Zoe’s role, but a typical day involves working with all areas of the business developing systems and processes, supporting her team, listening to our customers and analysing data – generally championing our customers to ensure we give them what they want. She is passionate, customer-focused and knows Findel inside-out, making her the go to for many people across the business.

There is nothing that makes Zoe prouder than the business being recognized for the amazing work we do, and we recently received a UK Customer Experience Award supporting our customers throughout the pandemic.

Outside of work, it is all about family and friends, her two children keep her busy with their many clubs and activities, and she is also a Governor at a local Primary School.

Sue Careless, Ops Director

Sue is one of Findel’s longest-serving colleagues. As a logistics specialist, she became Operations Director in 2015 and is the driving force behind the business’s award-winning and market-leading service.

Sue has delivered several pivotal projects during her tenure, including distribution centre consolidations, the implementation of a bespoke warehouse management system, semi-automation, multiple ISO certifications and much more. With responsibility for all site overheads, facilities, and operational costs she is focused on budget management and maximising efficiencies.

As an advocate for sustainability, Sue is also the Executive Lead Sponsor of Findel’s ESG program and has already spearheaded many existing initiatives such as on-demand packaging which saw a CO2 emissions reduction of 46%. She is passionate about climate change and a champion of women in logistics.

When Sue’s not knee deep in orders, she loves going to live music gigs and letting her hair down!

Paul Clarke, Sales Director

Paul is our Sales Director managing both UK and International sales forces supporting all of our customer groups including regional contracts, trade & resellers as well as early years, schools, and our specialist brands.

He brings strong commercial and varied customer experiences which have contributed to the evolution of the Findel sales function from being largely a transactional team to now a collaborative, commercially savvy and engaging team. Typically, Paul works very closely with his executive and senior management colleagues as well as his sales team – he works to support, engage, and motivate across a number of functions. Looking for opportunity to improve our day-to-day business, but more importantly grow and stimulate new business.

Paul is a good communicator, very approachable and supportive. He wants people to enjoy their work and to develop their skills. Friendly and easy to work with, he supports the team effort. The sales function has undergone quite a turnaround over the past few years, and clearly as Sales Director, growth and results are key to illustrating his performance, but employee voice scores, and his inclusion into many workstreams also indicate his effectiveness.

Alongside growth in our core areas, contributing to the cultural shift we have seen across Findel in recent years, where we are seeing positivity and confidence grow is the standout Paul’s most proud of. Paul has always enjoyed sport and the outdoors, he is a regular cyclist and loves to swim, as well as taking a stroll in the countryside. Music is ever present and even a spot of gardening also helps him to R&R.

Martin Jones, CIO

Martin is Chief Information Officer at Findel. In short, he’s responsible for everything digital / web site and all our computer systems and beyond.

Technology is a specialist and complex area, which some people can find daunting; but it is also incredibly powerful, and can transform businesses. Martin finds it helps to have a strategic and logical mind, a propensity to get things done, the ability to squeeze clarity out of ambiguity, and to be able to set and articulate a vision and lead people in the right direction.

A typical day for Martin can be rich, varied and hectic, but it is important to cut through the day-to-day clutter and focus on what really matters. That might be spending time with his team and others, setting a strategy, painting a vision for a new system or concept, finalising a budget, responding to customers requests, or solving a difficult problem.

Martin describes himself as experienced, ambitious, logical and focussed (…and in one case, as an Exocet!) Martin is first class at his job, the digital transformation of Findel over the last few years speaks for itself…
When Martin’s not at work he’s happiest halfway up a cold and wet mountain, listening to music, or having long and often funny philosophical debates with his two sons.

Mark Whittaker, Deputy MD / CFO

Mark Whittaker is the Deputy MD / CFO responsible for Buying, Merchandising and Finance. He’s a qualified accountant with an MBA with over 25 years of experience and has been with the business since 2018, working with the Exec team as well as his own teams to help turn around the financial performance of the business.

With a mixture of strong commercial and financial skills and many years of experience he’s developing teams to create added value in their day-to-day activities and future plans. Mark is understanding but challenging, adopting a continuous improvement mentality to achieve the best possible financial outcomes for the business and to look for new opportunities to improve the business and better serve our customers.

Mark has shown this through his previous achievements by reducing costs, improving efficiency, and providing an improved service for customers, extending his reach by outside finance with the buying and merchandising teams to implement new systems and processes with a more concise but better value set of products.

Another area of the business Mark is passionate about is our ESG strategy, working with our teams internally and extending this into the community. When Mark has a bit of downtime, he likes to do a bit of running, holiday travelling and watching his beloved football team Liverpool.

Chris Mahady, CEO

Chris is the CEO at Findel; he ensures we have great leaders & colleagues who are passionate about what they do. Chris works closely with our Chairman Paul and our investment partners, Andy, David & Linda. Our vision is to develop Findel into a fantastic business that’s differentiated and becomes truly successful over the coming years.

Chris likes to spend time listening to colleagues. He believes that’s humility is one of the most important values a leader should have. Chris likes to ensure objectives and challenges are achieved as a team and at pace. He has a great network of peers and feels every day is a good day as he loves what he does and truly cares about Findel.

Chris’s colleagues would describe him as Findel through and through, he is extremely hard working and dedicated. He’s passionate, ambitious and has a real desire to succeed. By his own accord, he’s fun, approachable, and sometimes can be grumpy if things aren’t going his way! Chris has been CEO/MD for 5 years and has a wide knowledge of Findel, you could call him the Findel-cyclopedia.

The proudest moment for Chris so far is seeing the business turn around after many years of decline by leading the business into new ownership in April 2021. When Chris gets some downtime, you’ll find him walking the dogs, ending up with a pint in the pub and loves watching Manchester United win (which is a real challenge these days!).

Paul McClenaghan, Chairman

Over 20 years’ experience at director level in executive leadership and stakeholder management on Corporate boards and Private Equity boards: Including CEO of PE-backed businesses, and Group Board Director and Managing Director of FTSE 250 companies.

Overseas experience as Commercial Director based in Hong Kong, and Commercial Adviser to a Russian retailer. Currently CEO of Previous roles include CEO JTF Wholesale / Deputy Managing Director and Commercial Director at Halfords Group / Buying Director & Trading Director at Dixons Group.