George Bettle steps aside at Bettle & Associates

Bettle & Associates enters a new era this month, with founder George Bettle ceasing operational responsibilities after 22 years.

Bettle & Associates was founded by Bettle in 2001 after the purchase of what was Grey Worldwide’s Waikato office.

Bettle, who retains a shareholding, now settles into the Chairman’s seat, leaving the operational future of the agency in the hands of his fellow shareholders; Managing Director, Will Peart; and Creative Director, Adam Lurman.

“Most are surprised to learn about the accomplishments of the agency,” says Peart, speaking of Bettle’s “under-the-radar approach” to quietly building a formidable Waikato business to rival some of the best in the industry.

“Global leadership of international brands like DeLaval doesn’t happen by accident,” says Peart. “Our client partnerships today, like those with Fonterra, Challenge and Advantage (formerly Beaurepaires), all follow on from an ethos and approach that was crafted and proven over those 22 years with celebrated kiwi businesses like iHug, LIC, Prolife/Mother Earth and many more.

“A simple business-oriented ethos; reliable, scalable and repeatable methods; a no-nonsense take on the commercial discipline of marketing; selling stuff; and being our clients’ partners – these things aren’t new, they’re the things that George built the agency on, and they’re the things that will guide our future success.”

Bettle and his career was celebrated on Friday night with a ‘Chairman’s Dinner’ retirement event with agency staff and partners, and fond wishes from current and former staff and colleagues.

“It was a lovely and quite emotional evening for me,” says Bettle. “I am very proud of what we have achieved, excited to see what it will do in the future, and very fortunate to have worked with so many great people and organisations.

“Like any good strategy, it didn’t happen by accident. Will, Adam and I started working on the succession and exit plan nearly three years ago – and these days Bettle and Associates is theirs. They own as much of it as I do, and they are the ones driving it forward. For me, I wanted to leave while I still loved the job and was still doing some of the best work of my career. I feel very privileged to have pulled that off.”

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