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17/06/2010 - General News

Calling New Zealand...

What are key ingredients of a world-class Kiwi company? 

For Greenstone Energy, which took over the ownership of the Shell retail and distribution business in April, two critical ingredients are world-class customer service and investing in New Zealand and its people. 

In recognition of the value of investing in local jobs and delivering excellent customer service, Greenstone today signed a contract which will bring the company’s call centre in the Philippines back to New Zealand, creating around 12 fulltime Kiwi jobs.

Since April, Greenstone has created a total of 40 new Kiwi jobs, mostly through bringing previously outsourced roles back to New Zealand.

As part of Greenstone’s commitment to building ‘in-country expertise’, roles in treasury management, marketing, asset management and credit functions that were previously undertaken elsewhere are now back ‘in-house’ here in New Zealand. 

Chief Executive Mike Bennetts said Greenstone has important points of difference from its competitors. “We’re locally owned and operated, the returns from our business are retained here for the benefit of New Zealanders and, while competitors are moving jobs offshore, we’re creating jobs and investment in New Zealand. 

“While Shell was previously paying for these roles globally, as local owners we are now in a position to keep these costs and benefits within New Zealand.”

Mike Bennetts said being able to demonstrate a tangible commitment to New Zealand was being welcomed by staff, customers and suppliers and he expected Greenstone’s unique position in the New Zealand market would deliver competitive advantage.

He said while Greenstone was directly creating new jobs, it would prefer to partner with leading New Zealand companies, and this was the approach behind the company’s contract with the award-winning call centre provider, Telnet. Telnet is one of New Zealand’s largest privately owned call centres and employs 160 Kiwi staff in Queen Street, Auckland.

Telnet founder and chief executive John Chetwynd says today’s announcement demonstrates Greenstone’s commitment to New Zealand and also marks the beginning of a trend whereby corporates are bringing their call centre operations to New Zealand.

“Both Greenstone and Telnet agree that being Kiwi-owned counts for little if it’s not backed up by world-class performance. We work hard on delivering cost efficiencies alongside cutting-edge technology and friendly staff, delivered locally. It’s this combined strategy that is paying off for Telnet.”

Telnet is currently recruiting for Greenstone’s call centre roles in Auckland. The Greenstone call centre will be running in New Zealand from 1 August 2010.

03/06/2010 - General News

Greenstone appoints Integral Axon as IT service desk provider

Greenstone Energy, the New Zealand company which now owns and operates the Shell-branded retail fuel business, has appointed Integral Axon as its IT service desk and desktop support provider.

Integral Axon was selected by Greenstone Energy as a result of a detailed market process. 

General Manager of Transition and Operations, Rhoda Holmes, said Integral Axon has a sound business model with the flexibility to develop unique, tailored solutions around Greenstone's IT requirements.

"Integral Axon is a wholly New Zealand-owned provider which is important to us, but more importantly they demonstrated a flexible, nimble approach to meeting our business needs.

"As we set about building a world-class Kiwi company and laying the foundations for future growth, it is important that we work with an IT services supplier that can grow and develop with us and meet our changing needs," said Mrs Holmes.

"Integral Axon had the right skills and the right scale to best meet our needs." 

Integral Axon was formed as the result of the acquisition of Axon Computer Systems by Integral Technology Group on 1 May 2010. The merger has created New Zealand's largest privately-owned ICT services company with revenues approaching $150 million, around 360 staff and offices located in Wellington, Auckland, Hamilton and Christchurch. 

Chief Executive of Integral Axon, Ray Noonan, said that achieving ongoing close alignment in the style of service delivery that Integral Axon will provide is as important as the services themselves.

“The strong value and business outcomes focus of Greenstone’s business resonates well with us.

“Integral Axon is committed to supporting Greenstone in ways that enable their users to focus more on delivering quality and profitable services to the market. Together, this will make us both highly successful.”

10/05/2010 - General News

Greenstone Energy confirms new executive team

Greenstone Energy, the company which owns and operates the former Shell downstream retail fuel and distribution assets, has confirmed a number of appointments which now complete the new company’s executive team.

Greenstone Energy is jointly owned by Infratil and the New Zealand Superannuation Fund and is a New Zealand-owned national service station network.

Greenstone Energy Chief Executive Mike Bennetts said the company had been working to secure a number of key staff during the process of purchasing Shell’s assets and he was pleased to have the new Greenstone executive team in place.

“As we work to build a strong Kiwi brand it is important that we have the right people on the team with the right mix of skills. This executive team provides Greenstone with the depth and capacity to enable us to maximise this unique opportunity.

“This new team will enable us to differentiate Greenstone Energy, while continuing to provide the operational excellence which our customers expect and deserve,” he said.

The Greenstone executive team consists of (* marks new external appointments):

Lindis Jones - General Manager, Corporate*

Lindis has been the Head of Property at ANZ National Bank since August 2007, leading a number of significant property transactions and developments in New Zealand.

Prior to joining ANZ National, Lindis was with Shell for 13 years, primarily in retail operations and strategy in Europe, Asia and New Zealand.

Lindis graduated from Otago University with Bachelor degrees in Science and Economics. While based in London he obtained a Master of Finance from London Business School.

Huma Faruqui – General Manager, Capability and Organisational Development* 

Huma worked in HR roles in the UK for six years before moving to New Zealand in late 2003. Her career in the UK spanned several blue chip organisations including Deutsche Bank, Cater Allen/Abbey National Bank and Deloitte. 

In New Zealand, Huma has worked for Vero Insurance and, most recently, with Telecom in HR leadership roles with each of Telecom’s strategic business units. She has been leading organisational development initiatives within Telecom around values, engagement and change.

Huma graduated from Bournemouth University with a degree in Financial Services, before moving into a career in HR, subsequently gaining her Grad CIPD, and a post graduate certificate in management studies. Huma is also a certified practitioner in many recognised psychological assessment frameworks.

David Robinson – General Manager, Commercial 

David joined Shell in 1994 and for the past 16 years held a variety of commercial roles in New Zealand, Australia and the UK. These roles have included area management roles, general management of subsidiary companies, marketing fuels and lubricants in the Middle East and Asia-Pacific, and global brand management. David is a director of the Greenstone subsidiary Mini Fuels and Oils Limited.

David is responsible for all business to business activities including the key industry sectors of Aviation, Marine, Bitumen, Chemicals, Bulk and Shell Card Fuel. A key focus for the Commercial Team is ensuring that the value propositions offered to business customers are world class in terms of reliability and innovation and that strong customer relationships are maintained.

David graduated from Massey University with a Bachelor of Arts and the University of Queensland with a Graduate Certificate in Management. He originally hails from the metropolis of Wanganui.

Mark Forsyth - General Manager, Retail

Mark is responsible for the safe and profitable operation of Greenstone's more than 200 service stations and nearly 100 truckstops in New Zealand, as well as holding company-wide responsibility for marketing, brand and asset management across the business.

Mark is also a Director of Loyalty New Zealand Ltd.

Mark has previously held management positions with Shell in New Zealand, the UK and Ireland and with various other companies in New Zealand, Australia and the UK in the property development, telecommunications and logistics industries.

Born and raised in Auckland, Mark was educated in New Zealand prior to graduating from the University of New South Wales with a Bachelor of Commerce degree. 

Rob Freeman – General Manager, Supply and Distribution

Rob has been involved with the Shell group since 1987. Over that period Rob has held a number of senior management roles in Shell Australia, particularly in commercial marketing, services, distribution and logistics.

Rob moved to New Zealand in 2007 and is responsible for the fuel supply distribution chain, from sourcing crude and refined product from international markets to domestic distribution and supply of fuel products to customers.

Rob is the current chair of New Zealand Oil Services Ltd and a director of Wiri Oil Services Ltd.

Rhoda Holmes – Transition and Operations*

Rhoda worked for Infratil in the lead-up to the purchase of Greenstone, building the new organisation’s transition and operations plan.

Rhoda has over 25 years of experience in the Information Technology and Telecommunications industry in the UK, Australia and New Zealand. Currently running her own consulting business, Raghnall Ltd, she was formally the Chief Executive of Optimation New Zealand. 

Previously, Rhoda was responsible for leading and transforming customer relationships at the helm of Telecom/Gen-i’s Trans Tasman ICT business. Rhoda has previously held roles leading both HR and Corporate Affairs. 

Rhoda holds an MSC in Telecommunications Engineering and Business Management, and is a Director of Kordia Solutions and NZICT.

04/05/2010 - General News

First step for first new Greenstone site

Greenstone Energy, the New Zealand-owned company which now owns and operates the retail and distribution assets formerly owned by Shell New Zealand, has confirmed it will build a new retail service station near Tauranga.

Greenstone’s General Manager of Retail, Mark Forsyth, said the new service centre will trade under the existing Shell brand and will sell quality Shell fuels, but, as with any Shell-branded retail business, the returns from the business will now stay here in New Zealand and benefit Kiwis.

Mark Forsyth said he believed there was competition from other fuel retailers for the site, but that strong support from the Greenstone Board and the flexibility to make rapid decisions in New Zealand rather than seeking offshore approval had contributed to the Greenstone success.

Greenstone Energy is jointly owned by Infratil and the New Zealand Superannuation Fund and owns and operates the New Zealand-owned national network of service stations. 

Mark Forsyth said this week Greenstone had signed the lease for the new site which will be built on State Highway Two, north of Tauranga in Bethlehem.

“The area is one of the fastest growing population centres in the country and this development will provide world-class fuels and retail convenience services to travellers in the area as well as to locals.

“We expect to begin construction in June and have the site complete and trading by October. The site will be operated by Greenstone’s local retailers, Dave and Lynette Gillies.”

Greenstone holds resource consents for the site. The new service station will create around a dozen local jobs and will involve around 70 local jobs during construction.

Mark Forsyth said the new service centre would be the first Greenstone development, representing a multi million investment in the local and New Zealand economies. 

“This will be a fantastic asset for the region and we’re delighted to have the opportunity to kick off what will be the first of a number of strategic investments in New Zealand’s energy future,” he said.

Sustainability news

Recycling and food waste

We have a goal to reduce 70% of Z’s retail operation landfill-bound waste by 2015. We’ve embarked on a network-wide recycling programme to waste less within our business.

We have worked with our Retailers, site staff and waste service providers to work out what we’re wasting and where, and come up with waste reduction plans for every site. We have recycling bins (for paper/cardboard, co-mingled, and food waste) on-site and have rolled out forecourt recycling bins across 103 sites so far (with more planned!). So far this year, we’ve diverted 226 tonnes of food waste from landfill into composting.  We have a network of ‘Waste Warriors’ at our service stations,  leading their teams into action on recycling, and competing against each other for the prize of top Z Waste Warrior – the winning site, Z Belfast, last year recycled an average of 85% of all waste on site.

Based on early data, we’re about halfway to our goal of reducing our waste to landfill by 70%.

We’re continuing to roll out more forecourt recycling bins across the network and to work with site staff to increase the amount of waste going to recycling. We’re always looking at ways of reducing the amount of material we bring onto our sites in the first place; such as recently reviewing the number of magazine deliveries to ensure we reduce before we recycle.

We’re also giving away coffee grounds to gardeners to put on their roses, and unsold food to pig farmers in those more rural areas without a food waste pick-up service.

Sustainability news

LED lighting on retail sites

Forecourt power and lighting accounts for more than a quarter of Z’s total retail electricity use. As a sustainable company, we reckon it’s important to reduce energy use.

We’ve completed a nationwide project to change out all of the external lighting in our service station canopies with energy-efficient LED lighting. We invested $3.1 million in a six-month LED canopy lighting replacement project, supported by a $580,000 business grant from the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA).

Sustainability news

Energy efficiency

We’re constantly looking at ways we can reduce both the cost and the carbon emissions of running our retail operations.

We’ve been working with our suppliers to identify how we can run our retail sites more efficiently. Some examples include making sure our refrigeration units and HVAC units aren’t working against each other; installing automatic sensors on doors; and installing pull-down screens on open fridge units. We’ve worked with our suppliers to identify new generation chillers that we’ll install at our new-build sites, which can save at least 40% on our current refrigeration energy usage.

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