Craig Heatley is an icon of New Zealand business. From humble beginnings, he created two of New Zealand’s most successful publicly listed companies. In the early 1980s he founded Rainbow Corporation – a leisure, entertainment, and retail business – and a year later, created SKY TV – one of the most successful start-up businesses in the history of New Zealand.
Today he is a committed philanthropist, jet pilot, and international investor, but the role he enjoys most is Dad to his four children.
At the age of 11, Craig started delivering the morning newspaper in a town where the winter morning temperature was rarely above zero. On Thursdays, he would receive a little brown envelope containing just over NZ$2. He added to the contents of the brown envelopes by cleaning cars and filling coal sacks with pine cones that he sold around the neighborhood. His father died when he was 13, and this left a huge gap in his family. He felt an overwhelming sense of responsibility for his mother and younger sister.
He hadn’t set out to be a media magnate or global entrepreneur – he’d simply wanted more of what was in that little brown envelope. He was also studying the stock market and making some small trades. By the time he was 15, he’d saved $300 ...