210119 / New Year Greetings from Helle, CEO at Paboco

You have been at Paboco for soon 8 months now. How has it been to join a startup and what have Paboco achieved so far?

The past 8 months has been great fun and a fantastic journey. I love being here. It is such an agile environment.  The size and phase the company is in where we are constantly moving forward contains so much energy. I even love all the challenges we have since it is motivating to solve them for a greater cause. I could have wished for more tail wind, but I am proud of the team and the persistence to keep solving and pursue for the better.

In terms of achievements, I would say that we are a different company now than 7 months ago. We have taken the step from being a research company to a production company. We have built the worlds first fully automated paper bottle machine, we are signing contracts with clients, we are producing 7 days a week. The team has grown, and we are setting the structures and procedures a producing company needs to have. But it is essential that we keep the innovative and engineering culture because our development journey is far from where we want to be. Striving to develop a fully biobased and recyclable paper bottle.

What would you say is Paboco’s greatest assets and where do we need to improve?

Assets - Number one are the Pabocians, our employees.Number two is our idea, product and technology.

Improvement areas – we need to be faster, more structured and secure we utilize our assets in the best possible way.

When you started at Paboco you listed execution, respect,and accountability as important values to build into Paboco. How are we doing?

Together we have set a bold vision and mission which will require that we focus on execution, speed to market and high quality.Respect to each other, our planet and resources, and our stakeholders is essential to get the collaboration and motivation right. Accountability - We need to meet our customers/stakeholders’ expectations, deliver the right quality at the right time and to the right cost. We need to walk the talk.This is something we are working on every day. We are a big family, and this is a fantastic journey we are on: to change the bottle industry and consumer behaviors for good.

If you would sell our paper bottle to a client in one sentence what would you say?

That it is a damn big step on the way towards a much more sustainable packaging solution.

Looking at the world around us with an ongoing pandemic, climate challenges, new consumer behaviors etc. How will this affect Paboco and how can we come out stronger and even inspire others?

We will be part of the solution and we will have an impact on consumers making more sustainable everyday choices. The past year has been very tough globally due to the pandemic. The impact on Paboco has been limited so far since we had our development plan and could focus on execution. The globalization and travelling will probably never go back to what it was so businesses and consumers need to adapt. Producers will need to take more responsibility for the resources they use and the waste they generate. We will be one puzzle piece to the circular economy and minimizing the dependency on fossil resources. I think long term we will inspire others to collaborate across the value chain to solve complex problems.

Our vision is to put a paper bottle in every hand.When and how will Paboco make it happen?

As soon as possible. In 10 years! In my world I see in front of me how we put paper and water in one end and a filled finished paper bottle comes out in the other end. It is a “lego” system that will fit right next to whatever filling plant. Our bottles are fully biobased and fully recyclable as paper and can harmlessly degrade if accidentally put in nature. In 10 years more trees will grow than today to fight climate change.