It's been a big year for Bauer. The APN titles have been brought in to the building, it's canned Creme and passed on Little Treasures. And now it's announced a restructure that will see a host of staff changes and the creation of a new brand solutions division.
In a release, Bauer says the rapid evolution of the market has led to the creation of a new commercial advertising structure "designed to drive innovation and better meet the needs of our advertisers around content integration and strategic partnerships" (we've interviewed chief executive Paul Dykzeul and commercial director Paul Gardiner and we'll run a more in-depth story on the changes tomorrow).
Gardiner says one of the major changes is the creation of a new six strong brand solutions team called the Bauer Media Collective, which will champion integrated solutions across its audiences, brands and platforms. In addition to responding to advertiser briefs calling for insights, integration, digital, events and audience-based solutions, the team will also be tasked with harnessing Bauer’s creative expertise to bring proactive category-led ideas to life. Amber Ardern, who has held senior marketing and sales roles at Bauer for the past six years, will lead this new team.
Ardern started her career agency-side at M&C Saatchi and she has more than 14 years experience within creative organisations. While in London, she worked for McCann Worldwide Group and then as European marketing manager at The Walt Disney Company UK. Prior to starting at Bauer, she was general manager at nzgirl.
Bauer has welcomed Suzanne Bull to the role of Auckland agency director. She joins from JWT where she held the position of media director. She has worked at JWT for the past seven years and has also held senior positions at Ogilvy and Carat Auckland.
The Media Collective unit will work closely with Bull's team and provide resource for Matt Tremain’s areas of responsibility across its direct clients, Wellington agencies and Australian business (he moves from the role of advertising director). Gardiner says this area is growing exponentially and continues to outperform the market.
Kaylene Hurley continues in her role as group sales director for Woman’s Day, New Zealand Woman’s Weekly, NW and Lucky Break, with additional responsibility for The NZ Listener; Jackie Campbell is expanding her role to become group sales director of women’s and premium lifestyle, spearheading the overall sales success of all non-weekly titles; and Tanya Walshe will retain her role driving the insights strategy and direction at Bauer, while becoming more involved in the publishing sphere alongside chief executive Paul Dykzeul. And Julie Bramley will step up to take on more of the day-to-day insights responsibility.
Publishers Fiona Lyon and Lisa Lewis have resigned and Bauer is currently recruiting one more publisher. Dykzeul says they both went of their own volition—and he believes they both deserve a rest and a chance to focus on other things.
"Their roles are very pressurised," says Dykzeul. "Senior people are worked pretty bloody hard here. It's really unfortunate that they decided to do it at the same time."
Bauer has also recently hired Mark Banbrook, ex TRB, to join its nine strong digital team.
"These changes celebrate and leverage Bauer’s talent, audience scale, deep consumer connection and creativity," says Dykzeul. "I’d encourage you to challenge our new teams with your most ambitious briefs. Let’s see what communication magic we can craft for you and your client‘s bottom line."
Dykzeul didn't want to talk about the number of casualties because these changes are not about reducing cost or headcount, as it may have been when it is was owned by private equity. He says they're about setting up a structure that better suits the market.