Outdoor centre top dog in awards night
Making an impact in the great outdoors has seen one regional business scoop the supreme gong at the Electra Business Awards.
Boutique outdoor centre Makahika Outdoor Pursuit Centre has been named the 2017 business of the year on Friday.
The business, in the Tararua Range behind Levin, offers outdoor adventures covering everything from school camps to corporate team building and leadership programmes. Makahika OPC also claimed the small business category of the excellence awards.
Ka¯piti Pak’nSave won the highly commended award after topping the large business category.
Meanwhile, the gala dinner at Southward theatre saw the induction of two new members of the business hall of fame - Peter Housiaux and Stuart Irons.
Housiaux built his Concrete Doctors business after he left
taki College at 15 to work on a farm before moving into an apprenticeship as a fitter welder at engineering firm, Willis Brothers in taki.
The company grew over the years and its work included projects such as the Westpac Stadium build – a project that saw staff numbers leap from 4 to 24 in a year.
The award comes with the company preferring to keep an
taki yard, despite having wok nationally, and recruiting staff locally.
He was a member of the Otaki Surf Life Saving Club and still qualified as a surf lifesaver after 40 years. In 2015 he was named Ka¯piti Sportsperson of the Year.
Irons was born in Foxton in 1942 and became one of the leading employers in Horowhenua. His formative years were spent helping his parents in their Four Square in the town.
In 1974 he bought his parents’ Four Square and carried on the family business.
He bought Levin Self Help Supermarket in 1977, Write Price in 1982, followed by the even larger New World supermarket in 1987.
In 2006, Irons retired and sold the business. By then, his grocery stores were one of Horowhenua’s biggest employers with more than 200 staff.
Irons took a keen community¯O interest: helping local schools, becoming a foundation member of the Foxton Tourist and Development Association, and involvement in the first Spring Fling promotion.
Sally and John Duxfield, centre, overall winners of the 2017 Electra Business Awards, with their venture, Makahika Outdoor Pursuit Centre.