Human Potential
Episode 48

William Cook, Co-founder of Ocean Australia Suncare & Harvest Box, on the importance of persistence.

Oliver Freer published on

William Cook is the Co-founder of Ocean Australia Suncare & Harvest Box. William was born in Australia, raised in Singapore for 5 years, lived in the UK for 3.

William has worked for large and small companies across senior roles in sales and marketing. He finally left Oracle to start his first business. He launched a second business the day his first child was born (he is now 9).

Harvest Box (“better-for-you snacking products”) is now ranged across 4,000 stores including Coles, Costco, Coles Express, WH Smith, Jetstar, Virgin and exported to 7 countries through retailers like Walmart in China and Starbucks in Philippines.

With the success of Harvest Box, and the relationships built, William has now launched Ocean Australia Sunscreen targeting a natural mineral based sunscreen that is better for the skin and is reef safe. Launched in October 2019 the products are stocked in over 800 stores including Priceline and Amcal.

In this episode of the Human Potential Podcast Richard talks with our host, Oliver Freer, about “why you know you will start a business” as well as discussing how data is king. The two also converse about the importance of being cautious of expert advice. 

More about William Cook

William believes that you can plan, strategise and search for trends but you can't force an opportunity. Research, and more importantly awareness of where the market is going, will allow you to find a great opportunity in the sea of average opportunities. For Richard it was seeing the growth and change in manufacturing technologies in natural Sunscreen protection.

William is an avid planner – he believes in the importance of planning; knowing that as much as possible has been prepared and therefore being able to accept the failures that will inevitably come.

William talks about a major failure - being dropped from Jetstar onboard menu after two years. However, William learnt to control the frustration, and re-built the relationship and so two years later are back onboard again with a product that is doing extremely well. William believes persistence will be rewarded.

William Cook’s book recommendations

Anything by Richard Branson!

Losing My Virginity: How I've Survived, Had Fun, and Made a Fortune Doing Business My Way

Screw It, Let's Do It

Like a Virgin: Secrets They Won't Teach You at Business School

Finding My Virginity: The New Autobiography

Screw Business as Usual

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