If Auckland-based make-at-home yoghurt producer Easiyo can get to $30 million annual turnover without a formal business plan and hazy methods of sales reporting, imagine what it could do with a bit of gently applied corporate discipline.

That’s the task allotted to Paul O’Brien, who took over last December as chief executive at family-founded Easiyo, whose majority owner since 2007, the independent dairy company Westland Milk Products, has just taken its holding to 100 per cent.

“At 75 per cent [Westland ownership], Easiyo was pretty much a family-run company,” says O’Brien, who previously headed up natural health manufacturer Good Health Products.

“At 100 per cent, there’s a huge collaboration opportunity with Westland that Easiyo haven’t explored.”

Among obvious opportunities is the fact that Westland is selling $120 million of dairy products annually in China, while Easiyo has barely scratched that market, with export sales in China of just $2 million last year.

By Pattrick Smellie of BusinessWire

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