Brett Ennis is Chief Executive of Prevar – a joint venture company responsible for commercialising new apple and pear varieties developed at Plant & Food Research.

Job

Prevar’s shareholders include Pipfruit New Zealand, Apple and Pear Australia Limited and the New Zealand Institute of Plant & Food Research Limited (PFR).

Brett enjoys the responsibility and challenges of this role as it covers aspects of science management, together with business strategy development and implementation, plus intellectual property licensing.

Career pathway

In his career so far, Brett has worked in a variety of roles in the New Zealand biotechnology industry. He started out in the dairy industry before making the shift into apples and pears. Over time, he has moved away from laboratory science and into business management.

Brett completed a Bachelor of Technology (Hons) in biotechnology at Massey University, before starting his career in 1979 at the New Zealand Dairy Research Institute (NZDRI), now Fonterra Innovation, in Palmerston North.

I enjoy the responsibility and challenges of my job and feel fortunate to have travelled widely in my career.

At NZDRI, Brett worked on a number of biotechnology projects, including the establishment of a frozen casein and cheese bacterial starter manufacturing facility. This project has provided on-going annual multi-million dollar cost savings and improved product quality benefits to the cheese and casein manufacturing industry.

While working at NZDRI, Brett was awarded a scholarship to undertake a PhD at Massey University. This included 6 months’ research in the Netherlands at Delft University of Technology.

Brett joined Manawatu Co-operative Dairy Company as Technical Manager in 1988. When a subsequent merger formed Tui Milk Products, he undertook a number of leadership roles within the new company. During this time, Brett received a scholarship to complete a Massey Executive MBA majoring in strategy and international business. He was subsequently promoted to the Tui executive team.

After leaving the dairy industry, Brett established a consultancy business and briefly lectured in international business at Massey before joining ENZAFOODS, the New Zealand Apple and Pear Marketing Board, as their Business Development Manager. This role included leadership for technologists and researchers, project management, technology licensing, new process and product development, implementing offshore technology licensing projects and establishing international joint ventures associated with novel fruit ingredients.

Brett began his current role with Prevar Limited in 2005.

Personal interests

Brett’s main interest is his family, socialising with friends and reading a wide range of books. He enjoys walking, and ballroom and Latin dancing, watching his sons play sport and celebrating their academic success.

He also enjoys looking at any of the photos that the Hubble telescope has taken.

This information was current in 2011.

    Published 16 June 2011