Obituary Shoden Systems UK has lost its CEO: John Taffinder passed away at home on Monday, 25 April. He was a terrific guy and will be sorely missed.
His IT life started with COBOL, writing code for British Steel in Port Talbot after graduating as an accountant. He then headed east across the Severn Bridge and climbed IT's career ladder to become the finance director of ITEL in 1977. ITEL subsequently became National Advanced Systems (NAS), and then – you'll recognise the name – Hitachi Data Systems. John was its global marketing director in California for four years. He returned to the UK in 1989 and started HDS's European storage business, becoming its EMEA general manager and bringing in such revenues that HDS Europe was consistently the most profitable part of the company.
HDS expanded European operations and opened offices in Germany, Austria, Spain, Benelux and South Africa in 2000, and, by 2004, it had doubled in size. He joined 3PAR in 2005 as its general manager for Europe, starting up the operation in Europe from scratch. Three years later, after helping to establish Shoden in South Africa he he joined Shoden UK as its CEO.
Taffinder then focused on establishing Shoden's brand and led the company to win business in blue chip accounts such as Barclays, Sainsbury's, British Airways and Standard Bank, as well as making inroads into Spain and Germany in under two years.
His staff will miss an encouraging and inspirational leader who never micro-managed. His family has lost a husband, father and grandfather. His friends have lost a supportive and generous mate and the IT industry has lost a gentleman. ®