Speech at East of England Development Agency
In 1989, Cambridge based Robert Stewart, aged just 23 founded the award-winning, specialist global polythene supplier, Stevenage Packaging Limited.
Now in its 33rd year, the company has demonstrated 32 years of consecutive net profit and sales growth whilst never making a redundancy, continuing to employing three generations of the Stewart family.
Under his leadership, Stevenage Packaging have won a number of regional awards: New Business Enterprise Award, Against All Odds Award, Employee of the Year Award, with Robert awarded Business Person of the Year Award.
He began his entrepreneurial journey in the extrusion & conversion of industrial polythene over three decades ago:
In the fitness sector, at 26, Robert founded Genetics Gymnasium Ltd in Stevenage in 1992. After a dynamic period of highly profitable growth he subsequently sold to Marco Goldschmied, business partner of Lord Richard Rogers in 1994.
Rob spending his 50th birthday on a tandem raising £15,000 for the Stevenage Community Trust
Robert acquired Happy Mechanics Limited - a specialist accountancy practise in 2010. In its first year under his leadership the company achieved 2,250% growth, making it one of the fastest growing companies in the UK in 2011.
Previously, under the brand of "The Differentiator", Robert coached and mentored a number of SMEs in True Customer Love, Differentiating Through Culture, Family Business Success, sharing his Inspirational Business Life Story.
Stevenage Packaging Ltd are founder members of The Stevenage Community Trust, established in 1990 to raise funds, promote charitable giving, enhancing the quality of life of people living in the Stevenage area. As a founding member Robert has been an advocate and volunteer throughout the life of the Trust, a trustee for 18 years and since 2013, their third Chairman, preceded by Ken Follett CBE and Lord David Cobbold.
Interviewing Frank Bruno MBE at Stevenage Community Trust black tie dinner - See the video
Robert founded the volunteer only charity Uniqueness in 2003 and has personally spoken to over 6,000 students and works on a one-to-one basis with, young, prolific and persistent offenders.
Uniqueness has worked closely with the Princes Trust, YMCA and the Hertfordshire Police.
In 2018 Robert was recognised for his work in the community and awarded a Paul Harris Fellowship award from The Rotary Club - for 'Service above Self'. Only 150 are awarded each year by the Board of Rotary International. Recipients worldwide include President Jimmy Carter and Boris Yeltsin.