09 December 2015

Filofax - Press articles in The Scotsman

The history of the company makes interesting reading going back over the last 15 years or so. One of the most reliable sources is the newspaper The Scotsman who seem to keep a close watch on the company and also good at mentioning them in articles.

Here are links to the stories going back in time:
What of the future for the company?

Well one thing not reported in the Scotsman was the departure of Gordon Presly, who stepped down as CEO of Filofax earlier this year after 27 years. I believe his departure/retirement was planned over two years earlier when he joined Harolde Savoy in partnership to form HSGP Investments Ltd to buy Filofax Letts Group in April 2013

He remains in place as a Non Executive Director and shareholder of HSGP Investments Ltd and FLB Group for the foreseeable future. 


  1. Wonderful article Steve, thank you for this excellent compilation of links! I wonder what will happen to Filofax now with the departure of GP. He held it together for so long, I'm worried what will happen without his continuity.

  2. I agree with you on this one Laurie. However we will have to wait and see..

  3. I had typed a lengthy comment and accidentally closed the window. I type far too slowly, but here is a much abbreviated version:

    Here's an interesting question for a business school seminar: What is it about the business models of Filofax, VDS and Gillio that allow the latter two smaller firms to be successful when the large, well-known, dominant firm, whose name is synonymous with the product, seems to be constantly struggling?

    1. Fascinating question, I would love to know too.

    2. Niche marketing rather than spreading yourself thinly and ending up with a weak diluted brand. LFG (and now FLB) has for years dived into yet another market - all guns blazing and with vast marketing expenditure - only to limp out again a couple of years later. Time Management, The Alice Temperley Collection, Flex by Filofax - there have been numerous examples. Meanwhile, poor quality overseas manufacture (ring gap, leather peal, dubious quality inserts and mechanisms etc. alienated the loyal customer base for their core product.

      Gillio, VDS and others don't try to do everything, or fob off poor quality items at inflated prices. What they do, they do well - and always with the customer at the forefront.

      It would make a fascinating subject for a session at a management school.

    3. Hi Tim, I couldn't agree more with your comment. What most big (stake holder) companies forget is always to keep a close eye on product quality rather then to cut costs on the wrong end of the market supply chain AND what they yet have to learn how powerful mouth-to-mouth recommendations within the consumer front are. Marketing has also to adopt a lot new understandings of the the todays internet era.