The Chairman of ESG Council at Indorama Ventures (IVL) Mr. Yash Lohia was the fourth speaker of AIT’s signature event, the Distinguished Entrepreneurs Talk Series held on 29 November 2022. More than 150 scholars, faculty, directors, and staff attended this event which was held in hybrid mode (onsite and online) at the AIT Conference Center.
Mr. Yash, the son of Mr. Aloke Lohia, founder of the US$14 Billion company, talked about The Bridge between Business and Environmental Aspirations taking the audience in a journey from when he started in the company at a very young age of 2 months old until he became the Chief Sustainability Officer, becoming the bridge between the environmental aspirations of the next generation and the tried and trusted business models of recent times.
He is an Indian by birth, educated in England and have been living in Thailand for over 30 years.
His parents started their business in Thailand around 30 years ago, and I was just two months old when they moved to Thailand. Now, IVL is a company of 27,000+ people with 147 facilities in 35 countries across Africa, the Americas, Europe and here in Asia. IVL is the world’s largest supplier of PET, along with a portfolio that comprises the PET Value chain, from raw materials, to packaging, through to recycling and more.
He shed light on the issues about Polyethylene Terephthalate – or PET for short – commonly used for packaging like soft drinks and water bottles, citing the UN environmental programme report which highlighted that for the same amount of beverage product, using Aluminium or Glass – instead of PET – increases the global warming potential from beverage packaging.
He shared the learnings he experienced as he advances his career in IVL. The first lesson was “Accepting and trusting are two different things, I trusted the person’s work, but I needed to learn to also question in case there was an oversight or mistake.”
As he learned more and more about recycling, he also got heavily involved in sustainability – the larger umbrella. This was a big turning point for him, and which eventually made him to truly love their products and what they do.
He ended his speech by challenging the audience to come together and speak up, sharing stresses and successes, “I have no doubt that among the minds in this room, there are those who feel pressure; caught between delivering for the environment, while meeting the expectations of a traditional career in business. The learning and experiences here at AIT can make that difference. Your generation can be the bridge between yesterday and tomorrow. You can do it together, by learning from and with each other.”
After his talk, Mr. Lohia visited the AIT Entrepreneurship Center established in 2019 as a breeding ground for future leaders and entrepreneurs.
For those who want to get the recording of his talk, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr. Yash Lohia met with the AIT President Prof. Kazuo Yamamoto, Prof. Shobhakar Dhakal, Vice President for Academic Affairs, Mr. Russell Rein, Vice President for Administration, Prof. Dieter Trau, Dean SET and Director, AIT Entrepreneurship Center, and Mr. Sanjeev Jayasinghe, Director, Office of Advancement and Alumni Affairs to discuss the possibility of further collaboration.
In picture: Prof Fulai Sheng, Green Economy Specialist, Mr. Sanjeev Jayasinghe, Director, Office of Advancement and Alumni Affairs; Prof. Dieter Trau, Dean SET and Director, AIT Entrepreneurship Center; Natalie Scarr, Regional Head of Communications- Asia-Pacific IVL; AIT President Prof. Kazuo Yamamoto; Mr. Yash Lohia; Prof. Shobhakar Dhakal, Vice President for Academic Affairs; and Mr. Russell Rein, Vice President for Administration.