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Gough Group CEO chosen for Prime Ministers Business Scholarship.

Karl Smith, Gough Group CEO, has been selected to receive one of the Prime Minister’s Business Scholarship awards.

Karl Smith, Gough Group CEOKarl Smith, Gough Group CEO, has been selected to receive one of the Prime Minister’s Business Scholarship awards. The award, one of twelve granted by the PM, provides an opportunity to study at one of the world’s top business schools. For Karl, this means two months at the prestigious Harvard Business School at Boston in the United States.

"The award recognises the efforts of a great many people at the Gough Group in creating a business which is recognised as a leader in New Zealand. The honour of being chosen is very humbling. I will do my best to represent the Group in a way which reflects the collective efforts of our team," Smith says

This is the second time the Prime Minister’s Scholarship has been awarded to a member of the Gough Group. Ben Gough previously received the award and also used it to study at Harvard Business School.

Karl will leave for Boston on 1 September this year and returns on the 2 November. Glenn Stapleton, General Manager Transport & Materials Handling, will be acting CEO in Karl’s absence.

The full text of the announcement from the Economic Development Minister, Steven Joyce, is shown below.

Prime Minister’s Business Scholarships awarded

Twelve senior executives and business owners have been given the opportunity to attend the world’s most prestigious business schools after receiving Prime Minister’s Business Scholarships.

Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce says the scholarships will allow our smartest executives to expand their international expertise, and are designed to grow business skills to help make New Zealand firms more internationally competitive.

“The scholarships offer recipients the chance to study at the world’s best business schools. They provide an opportunity to learn international best practices in management and leadership.

“The knowledge gained from the world’s top business schools by our senior executives will benefit the companies they return to.”

This is the sixth year the scholarships have been awarded. Recipients will study at a range of top international institutions such as Harvard Business School, INSEAD (The Business School for the World), and the London Business School. 

The study programmes range from 4 weeks to 20 months and funding covers up to 50 percent of course-related costs.

“Our distance from overseas markets and the size of our economy can be a challenge to firms wanting to enter international markets,” Mr Joyce says.

“The scholarships will help to develop valuable networks and the global mindset of our business leaders. Ultimately, this will help to grow our economy and make New Zealand businesses more internationally competitive.”

The recipients of the 2015 Prime Minister’s Business Scholarships are:

  • Carolyn Paewai-Young of Palmerston North, Operations Manager at Prepared Foods Processing Limited
  • Jodi Mitchell of Auckland, CEO at Simplhealth Solutions Limited
  • Josie Boyd of Auckland, General Counsel at Northpower Limited
  • Karl Smith of Christchurch, Group Chief Executive Officer at Gough Group Limited
  • Lauren Wells of Waikato, Market Logistics Manager at Tatua Co-operative Diary Co Limited
  • Nick Fogarty of Christchurch, Global Sales and Channel Director at ARANZ Geo Limited
  • Pierre van Heerden of Auckland, General Manager Sanitarium Health and Wellbeing
  • Richard Spelman of Hamilton, Chief Scientist at Livestock Improvement Corporation Limited
  • Robert Gray of California/Auckland, Commercial Manager, United States at Fisher & Paykel Healthcare Limited
  • Stephen Smith of Hastings, Wine and Viticulture Director at Craggy Range Vineyards Limited
  • Tim Alpe of Auckland, Chief Executive Officer at JUCY Group Limited
  • Tom Meek of Christchurch, Sales Director Asia and North America at New Zealand Mint Limited

More information on the 2015 Prime Minister’s Business Scholarships and full biographies of the recipients are available at: