Byström is new President of Esko

Mattias Byström.

Worldwide packaging specialist Esko, whose solutions today affect 9 out of 10 retail packages worldwide, has announced that Mattias Byström will be appointed President, effective January 1, 2019. Byström will succeed Udo Panenka, who’s leaving the company to pursue new opportunities.

Joakim Weidemanis.

“We thank Udo for his excellent service to Danaher over the past ten years, including leading Esko since 2015,” said Joakim Weidemanis, Executive Vice President of Danaher, Esko’s parent company. “Under Udo’s leadership, Esko repositioned the flexo plate production business through innovation and moved to a new site in Itzehoe. Udo also built up Esko’s business serving brand owners, including the acquisitions of MediaBeacon and BLUE, and initiated Esko’s software migration to software-as-a-service (SaaS).”

“Esko has incredible potential because digitization, automation and connectivity have gained momentum in the packaging industry in the past few years,” Byström said. It’s my priority to ensure that Esko delivers stronger innovation that’s increasingly valuable to our customers.” Byström brings with him over 20 years of general management experience. Most recently he was CEO of FlexLink – a global $300 million factory automation solutions business with headquarters in Gothenburg, Sweden. Byström has eight years of prior Danaher experience in different leadership roles in what was then known as Danaher Motion. This included leading the company’s Automated Guided Vehicle business, primarily a software systems enterprise. Earlier in his career, Byström also co-founded and led two digital start-up companies. “With his unique management and technology background, Mattias is ideally suited to lead Esko now,” Weidemanis added. “I’m very happy to welcome him back to Danaher and excited to place him at the head of this important business that’s simplifying the packaging value chain.”

Esko’s portfolio supports and manages the go-to market process for brand owners, as well as the production process for packaging suppliers – such as designers, premedia, printers and converters. This includes:

  • Esko Software Platform: project management, artwork creation, structural design, prepress, 3D visualization, workflow automation, quality assurance, palletization, supply chain collaboration and approvals.
  • Enfocus: PDF preflight and workflow automation software.
  • MediaBeacon: digital asset management (DAM).
  • Blue Software: label and artwork management.
  • CDI: computer-to-plate solutions for flexo and letterpress plates.
  • Kongsberg: digital cutting tables for sample-making and short-run production.
  • Professional services, training and consultancy.

Esko employs about 1,800 people worldwide. Headquartered in Gent, Belgium, its direct and indirect sales and service organizations are in daily contact with customers all over the world.


Tony Curcio is the editor of Graphic Arts Magazine.