Fraser Whineray, chief executive of Mighty River Power.

What was you first job?

Picking strawberries on a farm near Palmerston North with my twin sister aged about 12.

What did you learn from it?

The value of hard work. Productivity on the first day was such that we got a pay rise of 50c - to $2 an hour. Also the need to put on plenty of sun block, especially if you have fair skin.


What was the best advice you got from your parents?

To continue studying. I wanted to be a pilot but my parents encouraged me to go to university. I went on to get an engineering degree at the University of Canterbury

How will you relax over the summer break?

Spending some time at a small beach on the Coromandel, and that involves caravans and kids.

What are the big challenges ahead for your company in 2016?

There are big opportunities around tackling climate change by leveraging our renewable electricity. We want to be showing leadership in the electric vehicles to get more car owners filling up for the equivalent of 30c a litre.

And for the wider economy?

Again it's making the most of renewable power to give exporters an advantage in a highly competitive world.