Innovation leader – UK/France/Germany/Poland/Sweden/Finland/Spain/Italy/Belgium/Luxembourg


The Innovation Leader leads the overall approach to innovation in Europe to drive top-line growth. This role involves identifying opportunities for top-line growth, fostering a culture of creativity, and overseeing the execution of innovative projects.  The Innovation Leader is a visionary leader who can navigate the challenges and opportunities in the uncoated freesheet paper industry and adjacent markets to achieve sustainable growth. He/she/They will collaborate with various departments to ensure alignment with the company’s strategic goals and to facilitate the successful implementation of innovative solutions.


Sylvamo is the world’s paper company. Headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee, we employ more than 6,500 colleagues in Europe, Latin America and North America. We provide people around the world with paper to educate, communicate and entertain. Sylvamo owns two Mills in  Europe. (France and Sweden) Their Global Business Services Center is located in Krakow in Poland and their Europan Head Quaters is located in Brussels. 


Key Accountabilities

  • Develop, implement, and lead the European “innovation” (top line growth) roadmap both within the
  • UWF printing and writing space and “adjacent” segments. Ensures consistent alignment with overall
  • approach. The target is to generate an increment $70 to 100M/year business by 2030.
  • Leads the evaluation and implementation of ideas filtering them through the innovation roadmap
  • process, gaining necessary approvals, building buy-in across stakeholders and ultimately into
  • production (where applicable) remaining aligned with European scope and making progress towards
  • regional targets.
  • Ensures continuous improvement initiatives are captured in European innovation roadmap process to
  • enhance productivity and efficiency.
  • Champion innovation and an innovative culture within the European organization. Act as a change
  • agent and catalyst.
  • Collaborates cross-functionally (up and down the organization and externally as appropriate) and with
  • other world areas to develop new ideas, new and existing products, and services.
  • Stay abreast of industry trends and technologies that could impact the market.
  • Fosters and maintains partnerships with technology providers, suppliers, and customers to enhance
  • product offerings and services.
  • The Innovation Leader is an active member of the Commercial Lead Team

Key Challenges:

  • Resistance to Change: face the challenges in overcoming resistance to change, especially considering that innovation is not inherently part of our organizational culture. Ensure effective communication, engage stakeholders, and provide support to address this challenge.
  • Fear of Failure: Innovation involves risk-taking, and fear of failure can hinder creativity. Promote a culture that views failure as an opportunity for growth.
  • Constraints: to address the challenge of limited resources, consider emphasizing efficient resource allocation and creative problem-solving.
  • Time Management: Balancing innovation with daily tasks can be tough. Highlight the importance of prioritization and efficient time management.
  • Adaptive Leadership Style: adapt own style to foster creativity and empower teams.
  • Alignment with Business Goals: Ensure that innovation aligns with overall business objectives.


  • The target is to generate an increment $70 to 100M/year business by 2030.
  • The Innovation Leader will have an impact on a substantial team across commercial, manufacturing, and technology.


  • Proven experience in innovation management within the pulp and paper industry and/or other industries.
  • Understanding of the uncoated freesheet paper market with strong knowledge of / experience with adjacent markets (for example: leveraging our assets to develop fiber-based solutions substituting plastic); understands market dynamics and advancements shaping the industry and its growth drivers.
  • Must have the ability to lead cross-functional teams and manage complex projects and lead through influence.
  • Excellent analytical and strategic thinking skills. Able to connect the dots between ideas and strategy.
  • Familiarity with the latest industry technologies and their potential impact.
  • Able to build strong relationships and connections internally and externally.
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills to effectively drive change and innovation.
  • Relevant degree in field such as chemical engineering, paper science, or business administration.
  • Ambition to continue growing in the organization.
  • Fluent in English


  • Visionary – disruptive thinker, pioneer; thinks outside the box.
  • Collaboration – motivator, can build alignment and understanding, leverages relationships productively.
  • Execution & results – commitment, try and fail mentality.
  • Can drive a team; keep them on track and moving forward.
  • Agile, resilient, entrepreneurial, inclusive and collaborative, influence, change leader / agent, vision and strategy development, problem solving and decision making.
  • Strategic thinking and foresight


  • Excellent compansation package (The gross salary is based on the cost of living in the above mentioned countries)
  • Bonus 15-25% 
  • Company car


Sylvamo works exclusively with Paper Support One to fill the Innovation Leader position. If you have any questions, please contact Pim van Meeuwen (+31653265511).


We are looking forward to your application. Please apply via our website, click the apply button and upload your CV.

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