New Warriors owner keen to bring family-orientated drive to NRL club - 'He just wants everyone to strive for the best'

Behind the Warriors’ new ownership is a long history of support for rugby league.

Autex Industries CEO Mark Robinson says he wants to create a strong culture for the players like he has in his workplace. Source: 1 NEWS

West Auckland businessman Mark Robinson has bought into the club, carrying on the legacy of his father who played a big role in the early Kiwis Test teams.

Robinson says it's a rugby league love affair that started almost half a century ago.

"In 1979, Autex agreed to a four-year sponsorship of a sum of $100,000 - which was a lot of money back then," he said.

The proof lies in the Kiwis jerseys of old where company’s logo sits on the right chest - from a time when the hardest played the game.

"Gary Prohm and Dean Bell, Gary Kemble, Dane O'Hara and Fred Ah Koi and that - my father used to go over to England and give them their marching orders to come back to New Zealand to play in the Tests!"

Robinson's late father, David, was a staunch rugby league man. and co-founder of Autex Industries.

The successful business made its name in carpet, then went global with a range of products for the building industry.

But Robinson says he doesn’t measure his company’s success by the amount of money he makes.

"My father always said it's not about how much money you make, it's how many families you employ."

A third generation is now involved, including Robinson’s daughters Danielle and Michelle – the twins say the Warriors are in good hands.

"One thing is he's very selfless so he's all about people, he cares about everybody and just wants everyone to strive for the best."

That care is especially present at grass roots level where Robinson became a driving force behind the success of the Point Chevalier Pirates after a beer and a handshake with Stacey Jones.

"Stacey goes, 'the other night you promised us you'd sponsor us thirty grand," Robinson said.

"I said, 'oh well I'm a man of my word, if that's what I said, that's what I said'."

Robinson also contributed to house Warriors rookies recruited from outside Auckland.

But how does he plan to make an impact at NRL level?

"Get a good culture like I have in this business where, y'know, there's no hierarchies here.

"People have to get on and do it together."