Our company founder, Phil Caskey, was presented with the Beca Export Achievement Award at the 2016 Bay of Plenty Export Awards. Recognised for his driving entrepreneurial spirit and bringing new income opportunities to remote coastal communities, Phil is an inspirational leader to our team and our wider community.
The Beca Export Achievement award is also known as the award for the unsung heroes of the business community. Presented each year to an individual within an export business, the award recognises a material contribution to their export success.
“Phil Caskey’s vision and determination to establish a business that has a real commitment to benefiting communities everywhere, is a significant achievement in its own right,” commented the judges. “We were impressed with the infectious enthusiasm and dedication that Phil applies in all aspects of his work; he is an inspirational leader to his team and truly cares about his impact in the wider community.”
Since founding New Zealand Manuka Group, Phil has worked tirelessly to establish supply partnerships, direct research and development projects, develop harvesting and production facilities and, most important of all, create transparent and fair partnership agreements which have seen landowners and remote coastal communities gain new income and employment opportunities.
“What is happening now is the realisation of a vision we had 20 years ago which has only been possible through the support of everyone involved in this business, both directly and indirectly,” explains Phil. “We always wanted to see tangible benefits returned to the landowners. Education and empowerment are an important part of what we do.”
While winning the Export Achievement Award is a clear acknowledgement of Phil’s incredible work and business success, he is more proud of the results he is now seeing in the local communities throughout the East Cape region.
“The off-shoot of our land-share agreements is that new enterprise is now developing all around the East Cape,” says Phil. “The tangible benefits can be seen in those communities who are taking their own initiatives and moving forward with new ideas themselves.”
CEO, Karl Gradon, also congratulated Phil as a very deserving winner, “Phil is an inspiration to us all. It is through his leadership and vision that we have reached these heights and, at a personal level, I congratulate him for his tireless efforts often at great personal sacrifice.”