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Key appointments drive next phase of Xaar’s growth

October 17, 2022  By PrintAction Staff

Sue LaVerne

Xaar appoints Sue LaVerne as chief people officer and Karl Forbes as group R&D director.

With LaVerne reporting to CEO, John Mills, and Forbes to COO, Graham Tweedale, the newly created roles will assist Xaar in the next phase of its transformation. They will add to the strength and experience of the wider leadership team, ensuring the group delivers on its customer-focused strategy.

LaVerne has extensive international, cross-sector HR experience, having worked for Marks and Spencer plc, E.ON and Headlam Group plc amongst others.


In her role as chief people officer, she leads HR, and together with her team LaVerne will ensure Xaar delivers on its ambition of becoming an ‘employer of choice,’, a key part of the People pillar within the Group’s Sustainability Roadmap launched earlier this year.

“Xaar already has a strong set of values and great people who are clearly passionate about its products, and I’m delighted to be part of the team driving the People Strategy across the group,” said LaVerne. “We’ve already rolled out a number of exciting initiatives – such as our Early Careers Programme – as we invest in both our people and our community. By continuing to develop our People Strategy we will cement Xaar as being both a great place to work and one where everyone can build their career.”

As group R&D director, Forbes heads up a 75-strong development team, bringing together the engineering skills from across FFEI, Megnajet and Xaar’s printhead business to deliver on its development roadmap, and enable sustainable growth for both OEM and UDI customers.

He has considerable experience in the digital inkjet sector, having worked for Videojet and Inca Digital. Forbes also previously worked at Xaar as a key member of the technical R&D team in the early 2000s, where he contributed to several developments including Xaar’s unique TF Technology. Having worked for Cambridge Consultants and Sepura, his experience in driving multiple large and complex R&D programmes and leading multi-disciplinary teams has been central to the delivery of a number of new product developments and innovative technologies.

“Xaar has led the way in inkjet technology innovation for over 30 years and the creativity and passion of our people has been central to this,” said Forbes. “I am very excited to be part of this fantastic team as we continue to innovate for customers and unleash the power of inkjet. By enabling the sharing of R&D best practice and technologies across the group, our team will continue to develop best-in-class printheads and systems to meet our customer’s needs for today and tomorrow.”

John Mills, CEO of Xaar, said, “I am delighted to welcome both Sue and Karl to Xaar. They will ensure we have the best people, as well as a strong R&D focus, as we continue to drive the development of the next generation of inkjet printheads and deliver our vision of a world where you can print anything you can imagine.”

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