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Support from friends helps Racetech's recovery


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Support from friends helps Racetech's recovery

I used to get half-way through February before my office recovered from pre-Christmas desk-clearing. These days my desk is well and truly groaning by mid-January, thanks to the pile of material I have to read before presenting my annual lecture on renewable crude oil. I've read what I need to read. Nothing's changed. Market-led capitalism is the only feasible response to man-made climate change. Renewable crude oil beats the c*** out of battery cars. And still, the greenies don't get it. I've finished that reading now, and my updated lecture notes are on the web.

Underneath all those papers I found the Hutt News of January 7, with Karoline Tuckey’s story about Racetech’s recovery.

Racetech chief executive David Black told her that Wingate-based Carboglass temporarily hired some of Racetech’s staff. Last week, Carboglass owner Viv Har told me hiring Racetech people made sense. He had known David Black since before he set up Racetech. “But the dollars have to stack up,” he said.

Quite right.

Even so, not everyone would do what Viv did.

On the one hand, it’s a hard-nosed business decision: Viv needed staff to help him deliver on a large, profitable contract. On the other hand, the decision required faith and courage. Faith in David’s choice of employees. Courage to overcome doubts about their ability to be productive in a different environment, working with new people, so soon after a major trauma.

One of Technology Valley’s most important goals will be to maximise this sort of co-operation among Hutt Valley manufacturers. We cannot make people trust each other. They have to earn each other’s trust, and that takes time. What we can do is provide opportunities for Hutt Valley technologists to meet each other. The more often our technologists interact with each other, the better they’ll get to know one another.

David Black and Viv Har have already demonstrated how that can pay off in unexpected ways. I hope that by the end of 2014, Technology Valley will have catalysed new business relationships among technologists like them.


Kevin Cudby is a Wellington-based Freelance Writer and Parametric Modelling Consultant who loves writing about cool new technology. Email him to discuss your requirements: hello {a}

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