TwoScots Takes Two with Ajith Abeynaike, CFO of Hallmark CardsPosted March 19, 2019
#Wegiveascot about learning from the Australian industry leaders challenging the status quo in their fields. For the fourth rendition in our “TwoScots Takes Two” blog series, we’re taking two minutes with the exceedingly intelligent and innovative Ajith Abeynaike, Chief Financial Officer of Hallmark Cards. Employing over 400 employees between Australia and New Zealand, Hallmark prints approximately one billion cards each year and flaunts the largest product range in the Australasian market, with almost 10,000 designs crafted annually!
Four months into his role, Ajith puts his success down to increasing the commercial understanding of every team member in the business, and educating them on the fact that every action taken impacts the financials of the business. With extensive experience and knowledge in retail and FMCG brands, he’s no stranger to the impact that transient trends, socioeconomic changes and wavering consumer attitudes have on his industry sector.
Admitting that greeting cards are not growing, but are rather “stagnant at best,” Ajith applies realism and rationale to his role. “All different modes of communication, such as electronics, are impacting the industry. People are emotionally connected – so how do we use this connection through greeting cards? If you look at such companies like Afterpay, they captured the target market of millennials and made it easy for this age group to buy things. There’s a huge similarity when tapping into the younger age group for cards as long as it’s kept easy and convenient,” he says.