Lesley Van Staveren | FNQ Plastics | Challenge accepted

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No challenge is too hard for Cairns Business Women of the Year winner Lesley Van Staveren.

Lesley and her husband Colin are owners of FNQ Plastics, custom fabrication specialists with an environmental focus and an end goal of reducing waste in landfills. Together they make an undeniably dynamic partnership. Colin is the plastic specialist with 30 years knowledge and combined with Lesley’s vast experience in sales and customer service this has made the business the huge success it is today.

FNQ Plastics has a huge range of products including Grizzly Poly Ute Trays, Australia’s first plastic utility tray which won the 2014 TNQ Tropical Innovation In Manufacturing Award, as well as kitchen bench tops, pools, tanks, plastic welders, boxes, park furniture and bollards, to name just a few of their products.

“We very much embrace challenge,” said Lesley, mother of three children under the age of five. “We listen to demand, we keep growing and we keep very strong relationships with our team because they’re the heart and soul of our business.

“We’re constantly looking for how much better we can be and look at ways where we can grow. We surround ourselves with very positive people who have similar thought processes, who believe anything is possible.”

While winning the prestigious Cairns Business Women of the Year award was a thrill for Lesley, she’s also proud that the business has quadrupled in size in the last five years and excited to be part of the region’s Committee for Waste Reduction that works to help businesses and families reduce waste.

Being in business together and having three children can be a challenge for the couple, but Lesley said they’ve learned to successfully balance home and work life.

“It’s so easy to come home and keep talking about what happened during the day or what we’re planning,” she said. “So we’ve drawn the line after five o’clock. When we get home it’s family time.”

Constantly moving forward is the motto of the couple. They are two years into the planning of establishing a plastics recycling factory which can turn plastic bags and bottles into garden edging, seat beaches, wheel tops, garden beds and a whole range of products. The business model is ready to go the moment funding is secured.

“This will be a benefit to future generations and lead the way in creating a circular economy for the north,” Lesley said. “It is a big dream but in time, it is an absolute possibility to make it a reality.”

FNQ Plastics
368 Mulgrave Rd, Westcourt
Ph: 4054 7488
www.fnqplastics.com.au