Movings/Shakings: 2 September

Taking on the Aussie challenge

Highly acclaimed creative directors, Dave Bowman and Matty Burton, are joining Special Group Australia as founding creative partners in the recently announced Australian start-up.  

The award-winning team has spent the last five years with TBWA as executive creative directors of the Sydney Group. Under their creative leadership the agency doubled in size and revenue, winning 19 new business pitches and taking it to the number one creative agency in Australia, as ranked by the Won Report. 

“Matty and Dave are truly world class talents,” said Special Group creative partner Tony Bradbourne. “They have a brilliant track record of creative and effectiveness success. Together with Lindsey and Cade they form an incredible new offering in the market that we know Marketing Directors and CMOs will find refreshing and compelling.” 

Burton says that this appointment serves as the culmination of a career of hard work in the industry. 

“Our entire careers have been in anticipation of this moment,” he said in a release. “We have worked at many start-ups over our career; either at the bottom, in the middle or helping to lead the charge. Places like Whybin Lawrence TBWA, Host, The Glue Society, Droga5 New York and Droga5 Australia. We’ve been watching and learning the whole time. We will fail at times. We will succeed at others. But it’s the journey that we are most looking forward to.”

Speaking on the appointment of the pair, Special Group Sydney partner and chief executive Lindsey Evans said: “What clients will most appreciate is that Matty and Dave have monster talent. After all, more than 40 Cannes Lions and 15 Gold EFFIE effectiveness awards is more than luck. What many may not know and what I believe makes them truly unique is how such extraordinary talent comes from two such incredibly wonderful human beings. I’ve known them as friends for a long time. I’ve admired their work for even longer. And, finally, I can love them as partners.” 

Here in New Zealand, Special Group has been active in advertising, brand design, media and digital innovation, and this work has caught the attention of Bowman since the company was founded in 2007. 

“I’ve been a big fan of the guys behind Special Group since we worked in New Zealand a decade ago,” said Bowman. “So, to now have the chance to become a part of their fiercely independent and agile creative offering is incredibly exciting. Particularly at this point in time when the landscape is changing so quickly and radically, Special’s nimble approach will prove to be a valuable asset to clients. Special Group also shares our entrepreneurial ethic, as do many of the most inspired and inspiring clients and brands. We can’t wait to get stuck in.” 

Special Group was founded by Tony Bradbourne, Rob Jack, Heath Lowe and Michael Redwood and today holds an impressive roster of clients, including 2degrees mobile, Smirnoff, Red Bull, AA Insurance, TSB Bank, New Zealand Trade & Enterprise, Unitec, Ecostore and The Royal New Zealand Ballet.

Across the ditch, Special Group already holds the accounts for Red Bull Australia Paspaley, Marcs, Ecostore and Adoption Awareness. 

Blood at Colenso

At the beginning of last year, Andy Blood, one of the industry’s most awarded, respected and well-liked creative directors, handed the reins at Whybin\TBWA to Toby Talbot in a move that could only be described as disruptive.

And now, after running a creative consultancy called Blood and Sand for a year and nine months, Blood has joined Colenso (on a freelance basis) as a creative director.

Having Blood in its offices on a day-to-day basis will be regarded as a major win for Colenso, given the talented creative’s history.     

Having been at Whybin from the beginning, he set the vision and direction of the company and was integrally involved in growing the company to the position where it eventually employed over 100 people. 

Click here to read more about Blood’s journey at Whybin. 

A new leader

Market research company Ipsos is pleased to announce the appointment of Diane Dickinson as new managing director for its New Zealand operations.  

Currently the National Research Director, Diane will be replacing current Managing Director Ian Mills from 1 September, as Mills departs to a new general manager role with Data Insights Ltd.

Dickinson has been with the company since 1994 when it was Research Solutions, working her way up to her current appointment over time.

She recently won the ‘2012 Effective Partnership Award’ for her ongoing work for AMI Insurance after the Christchurch earthquakes.

“This is a fantastic opportunity and an exciting one too,” says Dickinson. “I am looking forward to working with our team at Ipsos NZ to take a fresh look at developments in the industry, ensuring that we adapt and develop in ways that the market demands.   We have a unique team of exceptionally talented researchers and support staff at all levels in the business and I want to use this opportunity to ensure that everyone in the company is also developing, for their own satisfaction as well as for our clients, who are of course the ultimate judges of our performance.”

Outgoing managing director Mills said it wasn’t easy to leave his position, but believes that Dickinson is the right person for the job.   

“In handing over the reins to Diane, who I have worked with for 12 years, I have the utmost confidence that the company will keep going from strength to strength,” he said.

Jumping into the Toybox

Animation, design and visual effects company Toybox has announced that senior colourist Dave Gibson is joining its colour grading team. Gibson will join senior colourist Andrew Brown and  data wrangler Pasene Faifua at the Toybox studio in Freeman’s Bay. 

Gibson has recently completed projects, including Katy Perry’s ‘This is How We Do’ music clip, Hallenstein Brothers ‘High Performance Suit’ (both for Director Joel Kefali) and an Air New Zealand spot for Damian Shatford.

Freelancing since late last year, Gibson has picked up additional experience across a diverse range of projects during this time. And while this has allowed him to grow creatively, he says he is looking forward to being part of a team again.  

“Being part of a team means being able to learn and grow,” he says. “Toybox has the best data wrangling team in the business and is one of the few companies with dedicated rooms for high-end colour grading and finishing … TOYBOX are already working with the new high resolution Red Dragon and Arri Alexa formats. With their short films, long-form drama, music videos and commercials, I’m looking forward to being part of a team that produces such a diverse range of work.”

Toybox executive producer Nanette Miles says that the decision to bring Gibson on board is in line with the company’s goal to be a hub of great talent. 

“We want TOYBOX to be a home for world class talent equipped with the knowledge and tools to respond to the fast-changing needs of our clients,” she says. “We continue to enjoy working with leading freelancers and believe the diversity and support we can deliver by having a strong in house team of artists offers the best creative choice for directors.”

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