Successful US entrepreneur takes up residence in The Atom—Te Kahu o Te Ao

Richard Doyle, founder of award-winning US brewer The Harpoon Brewery and current Chairman of Enjoy Beer LLC, will be based in The Atom—Te Kahu o Te Ao innovation space in February providing advice and support to the entrepreneurs in residence.

Richard Doyle

It was back in 1981, when Richard spent the summer in New Zealand between his junior and senior years at Harvard College, that he fell in love with the country.

Since then he has gained a BA and MBA from Harvard, founded award-winning brewer The Harpoon Brewery which he built to be a USD$75 million company with 350 employees, and is now founder and chairman of Enjoy Beer, a company that partners with craft breweries to give them the resources of a big company without being acquired by a ‘faceless multinational’.

With all of that under his belt, Richard is now back in New Zealand to work on his book, The Entrepreneur’s Toolkit, and provide advice and support to the student companies based in The Atom.

Richard has only been here a short time but is already impressed by the talent and hard work he has seen from students.

“The first thing that stands out is how students are working so hard on making their vision a reality in the summer. Their friends are probably having fun, while they are working,” says Richard. “Kiwi students have also shown me a great capacity to take constructive criticism without being defensive. That is a great quality when starting a business that will likely have some degree of failure. Learning from that is a key to success. I have also noticed that Kiwi students are more focused on the operations of the business than they are on the various rounds of financing. I have seen that focus on financing rounds in other countries and it can distract from the real activity of building a business.”

Professor Stephen Cummings, co-director of The Atom, says it is a privilege to have Richard sharing the insights and skills he has gained over almost 40 years of experience as an entrepreneur with students.

“Richard is an incredibly talented and experienced entrepreneur and I have no doubt that the insights, skills, and knowledge he shares with the student entrepreneurs will challenge and encourage them as they develop and grow their own businesses,” says Professor Cummings.