2016 marks the 10th anniversary of the European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA). In this new feature, we catch up with former EEPA honourees who’ve gone on to do great things since winning the award.
This week, Paulo Santos (pictured) from the award-winning AMS – Thinking Ahead project in Portugal reflects on the impact of winning an EEPA two years on…
Paulo Santos, Navigator Tissue Rodao
|Organisation||NAVIGATOR TISSUE RODAO (FORMER AMS-BR STAR PAPER, SA)|
|Award won||Supporting the development of green markets and resource efficiency|
What was it like to win the award?
It was recognition of all the work that we’ve been doing since 2009. The European Enterprise Promotion Award confirmed that, by thinking in a green way, we can convert a standard production process into an eco-friendly production process that, in this case, amounts to a huge combination of sustainability and profitability.
How did winning the award immediately impact your work?
It was great for our social media exposure. Before the EEPA, the company was very well known in local social media, but after the award, we got a lot of coverage nationally on social media, who were trying to cover the ecoview of the tissue production process. At the same time, we had a visit from the Deputy Prime Minister and the Environment Minister to show their support for this green concept.
What response did you receive from your colleagues and peers?
The best response that we’ve received from our peers is to see that nowadays, our eco view of the tissue production method is being emulated by them. If we go back in time, we remember that in 2009, all our peers said that producing paper by pipeline – getting the liquid pulp from our supplier to our plant – was pure imagination.
What has been the long-term impact?
We can’t say for sure whether the European Enterprise Promotion Award was the big factor in our acquisition by one of the biggest global enterprises in the paper industry – The Navigator Company. However, the EEPA gave us the kind of social media exposure that we wouldn’t have had without it.
Why did you decide to enter the national competition?
We decided to enter the national competition to promote our concept internationally and show that our production method not only works, but works better than the standard production model. We were trying to be the disruptors in our industry.
How did you go about preparing your application and making it award winning?
I would say it was quite easy. We explained the production process in a simple way and summarised all the economic and social benefits of our project from the beginning.
What advice would you give to others thinking of entering?
My best advice would be keep it simple. My second best advice would be to describe the project very clearly and to quantify all the impacts (not only the economic impacts, but the social ones too).
To find out more about AMS Thinking Ahead, visit http://www.amspt.eu/en/
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