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We are delighted to welcome Matt Keefe into the talented New Product Development team at Paladone where he will be starting his career in product development after recently completing an internship with Disney.

Matt isn’t just any employee. What makes his arrival exciting is that he is our 100th employee and this is an incredibly exciting milestone for us.

Paladone is a successful business established for over 23 years. In 2013 there were just 35 people employed in the UK and the NPD (New Product Development) team consisted of just 4 people.

Within 4 years and a lot of hard work the company has seen fantastic growth and a complete transformation of its workforce. The NPD team now employs 11 talented individuals with 4 brand new roles being introduced in the last year. In the last 12 months, Paladone has introduced a total of 21 brand new roles into the company overall and every department has increased in headcount. This has been necessary to accommodate the growth but also to prepare us for a changing landscape and to meet our ambitious but exciting plans for the future.

During the last four years, Paladone has been credited with becoming licensee of the year with Warner Bros, we have reached no 36 on the Times 100 list for export growth, won multiple awards within the gifting industry and expanded all of our teams and offices globally.

Nicky Calladine HR director, who has developed the people plan and overseen recruitment – “I joined a company in 2013 with 35 talented employees and no HR department! Today we are 100 talented people and I am incredibly proud of each and every person that has made this such a great company on so many levels”.

“Our culture is about hard work, innovation, respecting each other and having fun along the way. We are continually looking at how we can be better in everything we do and how we can develop our people to continue the growth and success of the company”.

Whilst we are excited that Matt has joined becoming the 100th member of our team, we couldn’t have reached this milestone without the other 99 members of staff who have made Paladone the success it is today.

A few words from Matt:

“I’ve spent the past 4 years studying Product Design at Nottingham Trent University and will graduate on the 19th of July. Having worked for The Walt Disney Company as a product development intern in my 3rd year, I became familiar with the licensed products that Paladone produce for Disney and was thrilled to find out that I could join the team as I finished university.

Moving to a brand new city where I don’t know too many people to start a new job was very daunting, however everyone at Paladone has been very welcoming and I’ve already quickly got to know a lot of people, so straight away the experience has become less stressful!

It was a very nice surprise to be coated with party popper confetti and given box of chocolates when finding out I was the 100th employee in front of the whole company, although I had no idea how to respond to it! It was like a weird mini birthday I didn’t even know I had. I’m already looking forward to making the celebrations twice as embarrassing for employee number 200 which at the rate the company is growing will be sooner than we all think!

I’ve only worked at Paladone for 2 weeks so far with the NPD team and I’m already really enjoying it. I’m loving the job role and have been introduced to loads of people, spending most my lunch breaks swimming in the sea which has been great, definitely something I could get used to (until winter at least)! Still need to get used to the southern sunshine as I’m constantly getting burnt and glowing red!

The office is very welcoming every morning (even on Mondays..!) and everyone I’ve got to know so far have been really fun to work with so I’m looking forward to getting to know everyone else and getting up to speed with my job role”

A surprised Matt being celebrated with party poppers and cheers from his new colleagues as our 100th employee in our company meeting