What about… Simon Murray, Universal Graphics?

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In work mode, he's seriously creative but when he's off-duty, his easy-going side comes through - especially when it comes to skiing trips with the lads!



17 February 2010

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Simon Murray

Commercial director, Universal Graphics, marketing partner to the Advertising & Fleet sector

What’s your job title?
Commercial director – Responsible for business development.

Your favourite grocery shop?
Lucky for us we have Fleming Supervalu (Store of the year 2009) for the big shop, and for convenience we have Mace across from my house.

How long is your typical working day?
About 10-12 hours.

How do you describe yourself?
In work mode I would be serious, hardworking, honest, optimistic and creative. Personally I am easygoing, and enjoy a bit of craic.

What’s your favourite irish product?
Silverhill Irish Duck.

What’s your favourite brand, outside of the brands you represent, and why?
Apple. I think the vision of that brand is amazing.

What piece of legislation would you introduce/change?
I think some consideration should be given to businesses and retailers who wish to advertise their business via outdoor media.There is too much restriction when it comes to using promotional signage, especially for the smaller retailers.

What historical figure would you invite to dinner?
Not sure, maybe someone like Henry Ford. The simplicity, vision and persistence from such a long time ago is incredible.

The best gift you ever received?
So far, my son, Daniel – 20 months ago.

What possession could you not live without?
My car. I couldn’t imagine being able to get through too many days successfully without it.

What was your first job?
I worked in a wholesale and distribution centre for the drinks industry.

What was your childhood dream/ambition?
My ambition was to own a business although I was more geared towards automotive design.

What’s your ambition now?
To see Universal Graphics become a seriously successful supplier, not just in Ireland, but the UK and European markets.

What’s the worst ad ever?
I can’t really think of just one that stands out, in general, for me, the worst ads are the one that have little or no creativity in them, such as ‘Sale Now On’ etc.

What’s your favourite ad at the moment?
I’d have to say the Evian’ Live Young’– it’s great to see a brand think outside of the norm and bring something totally different to the scene.

Your favourite newspaper?
Sunday Business Post.

Who is inspirational in Irish business?
Sean Quinn.

In your opinion what’s the next big thing?
I think most companies will start to make effective use from their fleet if they have one. Companies with a fleet of trucks or vans for example, can use their vehicles as an additional advertising tool in line with their current campaign.

What (if anything) was the last thing you bought on the internet?
Flights for a skiing trip to France.

What’s your pet hate?
Drivers who hog the fast lane!

What makes you laugh?
When my better half tells me ‘this is the last ski trip you’re going on with the lads’.

Three essential grocery items you’d take with you for a week on a desert island?
Sliced Pats Pan, packet of Denny Smokey Bacon, coffee.




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