Leading questions: My Food Bag chief executive Kevin Bowler on upcoming IPO

Kevin Bowler, chief executive of meal kit company My Food Bag, which is gearing up for an initial public offering and sharemarket debut this year.

How do you think the Government has handled the Covid-19 crisis?

The New Zealand Government handled what was a rapidly changing and uncertain period remarkably well.High quality, regular and clear communications are vital in a crisis, and in this area the Government excelled – political leaders and government officials alike.

What are two key things the Government should do for economic recovery?

Two things – reopening borders to support trade and travel is the priority, but it has to be done cautiously to avoid undue risk to the New Zealand community.And second; the Government needs to be prudent with its spending and look to support businesses to grow sustainable employment.

How is your business planning to tackle 2021?

As more and more Kiwis are buying their food online, we’ll be exploring what else people would like with their My Food Bag orders and trialling a range of delicious ideas. The business is well placed to expand into the wider food and grocery market.
We have told all of our customers that we are considering listing My Food Bag on the NZX and ASX.If we list, we anticipate doing so within the first half of 2021 and we look forward to sharing further information about this process in due course.

What will be the major challenges and/or opportunities for your industry?

Like all Kiwis, we hope to see a return to pre-Covid life.We love our food at My food Bag, and we’d love to see more Kiwis embrace eating healthy, fresh, locally grown produce.My Food Bag, along with our customers, are doing our bit in supporting Garden to Table, a charity that supports young Kiwis to learn about growing, harvesting, preparing and enjoying food from their school vegetable gardens.Our support in 2020 helped about 1000 more young Kiwis learn about where their food comes from.

What was the most interesting non-Covid story of 2020?

It is how Kiwis genuinely embraced seeing our own country and how we re-discovered how good we have it here.

Where are you holidaying this summer?

A short break near the Mount with family after New Year, and a late summer holiday in the Far North.

What are your predictions for 2021?

Everywhere I’m visiting at the moment I seem to be picking up a jar of locally grown honey.I think Kiwis are beginning to buy differently.We’ll favour local over imported, we’ll choose small over big, trusted over anonymous, and look for a genuine story; just like the local jar of honey.

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