About us

Our people

Our people are in offices throughout New Zealand and Australia.  Its always good to talk to a real person so feel free to give any of us a call.

Jane Lancaster

Dennis Thomas

Wymond Symes
(Bay of Plenty/Waikato)

Kimberly Robertson
(Bay of Plenty)

Gerard McEvilly

Benjamin Canaguier
(Bay of Plenty/Waikato)

What's New

Know your bees better!

Beekeeping isn’t exactly something you read about a lot in the tech press but we like the look of Beezinga , Read more...

Long term thinking for long term success

The first seminar in a series on future proofing business through sustainable innovation was held in Christchurch in May with Jane and Malcolm teaming up with James and Wells patent attorneys to present their views on where business needs to be heading to ensure longevity and success. You can see an edited version of the seminar below.

Jane Lancaster, MNZM, CMInstD, B.Sc(Hons), MNZIFST

Jane is a founding partner of Catalyst® Ltd. After a successful career in science management, Jane worked with ZESPRI International as Innovation Manager for New Cultivar Development. Since then she has worked with many New Zealand companies and sectors in setting commercial goals in food, natural products and biotechnology and designing innovation programmes to deliver on them. This has also involved accessing investment funding for the companies to support their R&D.

Over the last 10 years Jane has worked extensively with New Zealand and Australian food regulators and industry sectors designing and developing standards for export certification. Jane has worked across horticulture, forestry, dairy and live animal industries, and laboratory certification, working to develop good relationships between industry and regulators.

Her education was at Canterbury University (B.Sc. Hons 1st class) and she is a professional member of New Zealand Institute of Food Science and Technology.

Jane is currently a Board member on Food Standards Australia New Zealand, and High Value Nutrition National Science Challenge and is a chartered member of the NZ Institute of Directors.

Jane was made a Member of the NZ Order of Merit (MNZM) in 2006 for services to commercialising innovation.

Mobile:+64 27 227 3666
Email Address: Jane Lancaster

Dennis Thomas, B.Tech, Dip.Bus.Admin, FNZIFST - Consultant

Dennis has been involved with the food industry, mostly in New Zealand, for over 35 years primarily in research and development, quality assurance and technical management roles.

Dennis's extensive food processing knowledge was acquired through 27 years in the food industry in senior Technical Management and Quality Assurance roles: 7 years in dairy, 9 years in baking and confectionery, 9 years in seafood and 2 years in grains). During much of this period he was an executive member of the New Zealand Foods Standards Committee, until the joint Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code was established. He also worked 5 years in tertiary education roles related to the food industry at the Central Institute of Technology and Massey University. Dennis's most recent role was 6 years as Principal Food Technologist at Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ).

This background has provided Dennis with expertise in industrial research and development; quality assurance; food technology; international trade; operating in an academic environment; and Australian, New Zealand and international food regulatory systems.

Dennis's education was at Massey University (B.Tech and post-graduate Dip.Bus.Admin) and he is a Fellow and past President of the New Zealand Institute of Food Science and Technology.

Mobile: +64 21 253 5198
Email Address: Dennis Thomas

Wymond Symes, MSc - Consultant

After a career in medical research Wymond became interested in commercialising the outcomes of research. He worked for Vialactia, a research arm of Fonterra, evaluating the commercial potential of opportunities around herd genetics in the dairy industry. Wymond continues to work closely with the dairy industry through the management and development of nutritional products.

Wymond has also developed a professional interest in resource efficiency of product development and determining the environmental impacts of business operations. He has extensive experience in LCA (life cycle assessment) - the determination of the environmental impacts of products, services and systems over their lifetime.

Wymond has a detailed understanding of the CarbonZero programme and is an approved consultant for them.

Wymond's expertise includes:

  • Carbon accounting (operational carbon inventories and product LCA)
  • Experience and understanding of the biotechnology industry
  • Knowledge of the New Zealand dairy industry
  • Knowledge of the regulatory process for new product approval

Wymond holds an MSc in Biochemistry from the University of Auckland.

Mobile:+64 27 560 8776
Email Address: Wymond Symes

Kimberly Robertson, MSc - Consultant

Kimberly has been involved in research and development for 15 years in New Zealand and internationally, with a focus on carbon accounting related to climate change, forestry and renewable energy. She worked for Forest Research (Scion) for 7 years before heading to Austria for 18 months to manage an International Energy Agency (IEA) Bioenergy project.

More recently her work has focussed on the use of life cycle thinking and assessment of products and services to improve their environmental impact. Kimberly leads the best practice group for LCANZ and sits on the LCANZ committee, and has also undertaken post graduate study in Life Cycle Assessment at Massey University. She has provided consultancy services to companies, government and international organisations.

Kimberly's expertise includes:

  • Life cycle assessment of products.
  • Specialist knowledge of national and international climate change policies and land use carbon accounting systems
  • Carbon accounting at all levels
  • Greenhouse Gas Inventory Reviewer for UNFCCC and Kyoto Protocol

 Kimberly has a BSc from Otago University and a Masters of Forestry Science (1st class honours) from Canterbury University. She is a member of the NZ Institute of Forestry.

Mobile:+64 27 220 4417
Email Address: Kimberly Robertson

Gerard McEvilly, BSc (Hons), MBA - Associate, Sydney

Gerard is an agribusiness innovation manager with an extensive knowledge of supply chain, climate change and sustainability issues in Australia, with a particular focus on horticulture.

Gerard managed strategic planning and specific programmes for a range of horticultural industries with Horticulture Australia Limited (HAL) for over 13 years. He also held senior management positions, leading major whole-of-industry programs in sustainable development. These included the "Horticulture for Tomorrow" Environmental Assurance program and the Horticulture Water Initiative.

Gerard undertakes consulting assignments in aspects of all aspects of supply chain management. As well as understanding commercial agribusiness issues, Gerard draws on outstanding networks in all aspects of rural research in Australia.

Gerard has a strong interest in education and training. He lectures part-time at Sydney University and has managed a Federal rural training program.

Gerard has a BSc (Hons) in Agricultural Science from the University of Nottingham, UK, majoring in Horticulture and Environmental Physics and recently completed an MBA (Technology Management) through LaTrobe University.

Mobile:+61 40 904 7117
Email Address: Gerard McEvilly

Benjamin Canaguier, MSc - Consultant

Originally from France, Benjamin has ventured down under, bringing with him his skills as an environmental engineer, specialising in life cycle assessment, eco-design, and innovation.

Before joining Catalyst Benjamin worked for Gingko 21, a French consultancy, where he performed life cycle assessment and eco-design projects across a broad range of sectors including automotive, building and construction, IT and communications and household appliances. Clients included Renault, Air France KLM, Air Liquide and the French Environment and Energy Agency.

Ben brings with him Open Green®, an eco-design and innovation toolkit for assessing and improving the environmental performance of products and services. Ben also provides professional training on life cycle assessment and eco-design to both public agencies and private companies.

Benjamin’s expertise includes:

  • Eco-design and innovation
  • Life Cycle Assessment and carbon footprinting
  • Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs)
  • Training and communication

Ben is a member of the Australasian EPD Programme (AEPDP) Technical Advisory Group and an approved verifier for the programme.

Ben holds an MSc in Environmental Engineering from ESSTIN (Superior School of Sciences and Technologies of Nancy) and spent one year in Denmark at the DTU (Denmark Technical University) studying at both its Environment and Civil Engineering Departments.

Mobile:+64 224 34 55 35
Email Address: Benjamin Canaguier