Senior banker takes on SME with a social purpose
Grant Robinson has left his senior management role at Westpac to join an ambitious seedling company taking plant-based packaging to the world. Robinson has given up his role as Westpac’s National Manager Professional Services and Director of Westpac Growth Grants Small Business team to take the helm as general manager for fast-growing SME, Ecoware. […]
Grant Robinson has left his senior management role at Westpac to join an ambitious seedling company taking plant-based packaging to the world.
Robinson has given up his role as Westpac’s National Manager Professional Services and Director of Westpac Growth Grants Small Business team to take the helm as general manager for fast-growing SME, Ecoware.
Robinson joined Westpac ten years ago following a successful professional cricket career and quickly climbed the corporate ranks.
He admits it would have been easy to continue his successful banking career at Westpac (Robinson was 2016 and 2015 Business Banker of the Year and one of the youngest Commercial Area Managers in the bank’s history) but his decision to walk away was a really simple one.
“At some point you need to think about what you are doing today and how that impacts on the world tomorrow. Ecoware has a clear purpose and complete clarity about what they stand for – making the world a better place through offering their innovative compostable packaging. I wanted to be a part of something that will make my kids proud one day,” Robinson says.
He was also attracted by the opportunity to be a part of a small, progressive company that can pivot and respond quickly, enabling them to gain traction much quicker than traditional industries.
“Businesses like Ecoware put culture, customers and communities first – before career and shareholders – which resonates with me. Joining an energetic growth-minded team who have a clear purpose and social conscience was a no-brainer,” he says.
Robinson was introduced to Ecoware founders James Calver and Alex Magarragia through Westpac’s Growth Grant scheme (a Robinson run initiative). He was excited by what they were achieving with their compostable packaging company, both in New Zealand and on an international stage.
“It was these two young guys in their jandals turning a good idea into a global company. They’d done an excellent job to get to where they were at but they were looking for a certain skillset to help them reach the next level. I was looking for a new challenge and enthused by the prospect of using my knowledge and experience to help turn Ecoware from a SME into a ME,” Robinson says.
“Joining a company that is clearly destined for international success gives me more opportunity for personal and professional growth than any standard corporate. I’m rapt to be able to combine my passion for business and love for the environment in this role”.