Welcome back to the next instalment in our series about St. Pierre’s partners!
Today we’re off to sunny Hawke’s Bay, to see Hiromi. His dual-format shop (including both sushi and Bento Bowl) is in the middle of the action in downtown Hastings.
“Yes, I’ve definitely been with St. Pierre’s for a long time! I moved to NZ, to Christchurch, as a language student in October 1996, and soon began work at South City mall shop. Now I think about it, that’s nearly 25 years straight with the company!”
After working his way up in the company, he remained in Christchurch until the devastating 2011 earthquakes, which forced many people to make difficult decisions about their future. Hiromi relocated to Auckland in October that year to become one of our first area managers.
That experience encouraged him to take the next step, and in October 2013 he moved to Hastings to become the founding partner there. With a young family – his daughter is now 15 and son 12 – at the time, repeated relocations in a short space of time were not ideal, but he was convinced that it was the right move personally and professionally.
“Becoming a partner has definitely met my expectations. I was first attracted to the partnership opportunity by the potential extra income and greater rewards for my hard work. Any new venture comes with risk, but I was confident that the company’s backing would minimise risk and deliver a reward for my investment. It definitely has.”
On a personal level, he enjoys the shift back into shop work as it enables engaging with customers directly – a quick chat with Hiromi will tell you he’s a real people person! In addition, as a native of snowy Akita in the north of Japan, he loves being closer to the ski fields of the central North Island.
“I grew up in the snow country, so I’m really happy I can teach my kids to ski without having to travel too far. Whenever we have a free weekend in winter, we’ll be checking out the powder at Tūroa or Whakapapa!”
So, if you’re thinking of heading to the Hawke’s Bay to enjoy the wineries, wildlife or wonderful architecture, don’t forget to visit Hiromi and his team in Hastings. And here’s to great people taking on more challenges across the St. Pierre’s Group!