Business Leader of the Year 2011 Finalist: Helen Robinson

By Karyn Scherer

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Helen Robinson. Photo / Kenny Rodger
Helen Robinson. Photo / Kenny Rodger

The former head of Microsoft in New Zealand was shoulder-tapped in 2007 by Mark Weldon and Mark Franklin to be the founding CEO of TZ1, an NZX-sponsored registry set up to provide transparency and integrity to carbon and other environmental markets.

In just six months, the registry became the world's largest of its type, and in June 2009 it was sold to London-based Markit Group for $56 million.

Robinson stayed on as chief executive of environmental markets for Markit until April this year and under her leadership, it has won numerous awards, including twice winning Best Global Registry for Environmental Finance, and Best Environmental Initiative in the Financial Sector Technology Awards.

She is living proof that New Zealanders do not need to move overseas to achieve global success, although her lifestyle wouldn't suit everyone - she is one of Air New Zealand's most frequent flyers, spending one week each month in New York, and one week in London.

But her home remains in Auckland.

She is a director of the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (Niwa) and the NZ Business Excellence Foundation, and as a past director of Auckland Plus (part of Auckland Regional Council) she chaired the Metro Innovation and Export Project.

- NZ Herald

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