Movings/Shakings: 7 April

A returning trio 

Following a period of new business growth in the first quarter, Porter Novelli has attracted back three former consultants to its stable.

“To be able attract such well-regarded consultants back to Porter Novelli in quick succession is very pleasing. We’re certain of the positive impact they will make on our client’s businesses,” says managing director Strahan Wallis.

This move sees Wright, who joins the company as the executive director of marketing communications, complete Porter Novelli’s senior team, which already includes Wallis, executive director Sarah Williams and newly appointed non-executive chairman John Frey.

Wallis believes that Wright’s journalistic experience gives her the necessary skill set and contact list to succeed in her new role at Porter Novelli.  

“Louise Wright is without question one of New Zealand’s most highly networked professionals. She has worked in a variety of high profile roles in the media and public relations industry; most recently as editor of the New Zealand Woman’s Weekly. Before that she was executive director at Porter Novelli where she successfully ran a number of corporate and marketing clients winning awards along the way. Louise was also ACP’s publishing director of mass market titles, Woman’s Day, The Australian Women’s Weekly (NZ edition) and NW magazine. She has previously edited Cleo and She & More, worked as a journalist for the Sunday Star Times, the Christchurch Press and the Auckland Star,” he says.

Following Bauer’s acquisition of several APN-owned magazines, Wright was relieved of her duties as the editor of New Zealand’s Woman’s Weekly as part of the restructuring process. The role at Porter Novelli commences in May and will be the first position she holds after leaving the magazine.

In addition to Wright, Porter Novelli has also appointed Joanna Glover (left) and Kerry Gardner (right) as senior account directors. 

This move will, in some degrees, serve to consolidate the status quo in the sense that the pair have collaborated with Porter Novelli in the past.    

“Joanna and Kerry are both hugely respected and highly sought after senior consultants and have been part of Porter Novelli’s contracting team for some time. They return to work on large projects and clients against a backdrop of strong new business growth.  The addition of these three [Gardner, Glover and Wright] alongside our already exceptional team puts us in a strong position to continue delivering market-leading communications,” says Wallis.

A new Anthem

After several months of brewing, it has been confirmed that ex Porter Novelli executives Jane Sweeney and Carolyn Kerr have established a new comms agency called Anthem.

Located in Wynyard Quarter innovation precinct, Anthem’s offices will also serve as the place of work for recent recruit Paul Brislen (who starts in June as executive director) and account manager Nick Palfrey.

At this stage, the company’s website and logo are still works in progress but, according the NBR, the new agency already has several clients, some of which followed Sweeney from Porter Novelli. The NBR report also says that former Y&R managing director James Hurman will be sharing office space with the team at Anthem. However, it is still unclear what the exact extent of his involvement will be.

International talent

The planning department at Colenso BBDO will soon be boosted by the arrival of strategic planner Paul O’Neill, who has honed his skills during stints at creative agencies in the UK, Europe, and most recently, the United States.

As the agency’s new planning director, O’Neil, a trained lawyer, will report to the head of planning Andy McLeish, who welcomed the arrival of the new recurit.

“We’re always looking for people who can add a different dimension to our thinking. So Paul’s experience and global pedigree will be a great addition to the team; not to mention his enthusiasm. I can’t wait to let him loose on some clients,” say McLeish.

After graduating from law school, O’Neil started out as a suit and then moved into planning at AKQA London, where he worked on Coca Cola, Fiat, and the Daily Telegraph. Since then, he’s worked on a number of blue chip brands including Absolut, Nike, Red Bull, Vodafone and Virgin Atlantic at RKCR/Y&R London, SID LEE Amsterdam, and most recently Venables Bell & Partners in San Francisco – where he was the strategy director.

Relationship extended to airwaves

​Following Robert Taylor’s announcement on 31 March that he would hanging up his mic and no longer co-hosting The Rock Drive show with Jono Pryor, it has now been announced that Ben Boyce will be joining the show to give Jono and Ben at Ten fans a few extra doses of the comedic pair’s schadenfreude from late April.   

Taylor is yet to make any announcements regarding his next career moves, but the Mediaworks group comms manager Rachel Lorimer says that he is currently speaking to the media company about the possibility of future projects. However, at this stage, there have been no official announcements.

Having previously served as an interim co-host on the Rock’s Night Show between 2004 and 2005 and given that he will be working alongside his co-conspirator, Boyce says that he is looking forward to the new role. 

“I’m looking forward to spending every afternoon with Jono as well as every morning, as I was starting to feel like we didn’t hang out together enough!” says Boyce.

“Jono’s been a great help. His main advice was for me to stop wearing any t-shirts that aren’t black.”

The Rock programme director Brad King was enthustic about the pair working together on radio, but also commended Taylor for his decade-long tenure on the radio station.

“The Robert and Jono Drive show has been crowned Best non-breakfast Entertainment Show at the NZ Radio Awards five times in the past six years, and is consistently one of the highest rating shows in the country,” he says.

“They’ve given away brides and divorces, become infamous for the hugely successful Wind Up Your Wife segment, and spilt the nation by creating a Folden, the world’s first Ford and Holden hybrid. 

“Robert will be greatly missed, but there couldn’t be a better replacement than Jono’s other other-half, Ben.”

Building blocks of success

The Lego Group has announced the appointment of current head of sales Troy Taylor as the new head of marketing for Lego Australia and New Zealand.

Taylor has been with The Lego Group for 12 years and has experience in a wide range of experience in field sales and account management, and he has also gained international stripes after having worked in the United States for a number of years in the role of customer development director. 

In 2012, Taylor returned to Australia and established the newly created role of head of sales, in which he was required to lead a team of 26. 

“Troy brings with him tremendous strategic, commercial and leadership capabilities while also having a deep knowledge of the Lego brand and products. In his new role, Troy will drive the marketing strategy for Lego Australia and New Zealand which includes a stronger focus on marketing effectiveness, shopper insight driven retail activation, next generation e-commerce methodology, active share focus and overall organisational health in the marketing department,” says Glenn Abell, the general manager for Lego Australia and New Zealand.

In his new position, Taylor will be responsible for the people development and team leadership of his 10 direct reports, who will help him to continue Lego’s strong performance in the Australian and New Zealand markets.

Lego is yet to appoint a replacement in the head of sales role vacated by Taylor, but the company is currently in the process of recruiting someone.

On the Beat

In response to continued growth of its client portfolio, Beat Communications recently brought on two new staff members and made a pair of promotions.  

Harriet Mahaffie joins the team as Account Manager, and she will work across the agency’s FMCG and fashion portfolios. Prior to joining the agency, Mahaffie held both advertising and PR positions, having previously worked at FCB and Public Library, respectively.

Second recruit, Rebecca McNab, a recent AUT graduate, joins the Beat team as an account executive and will be required to work across the FMCG portfolio and activation division.

In other appointments Gina McKinnon has been promoted to business director, with a focus on strategic counsel and development of new business. With over 13 years’ industry experience working with a range of clients such as Gillette, Sony, Virgin, Red Bull, DB, Holden, Dove and Persil, McKinnon has developed a solid grounding in strategic planning, targeted media relations and tactical executions.

The final new appointment is that of James Boult, who has been promoted to the position of account director responsible for key FMCG and lifestyle accounts. In his time at Beat, Boult has worked on the V Energy, Pepsi, Mountain Dew, Unitec, Spotfiy, Cadbury and Wattie’s accounts, as well as several others.  

According to a release from Beat, these new appointments have been made on account of recent client additions, including Independent Liquor, Nineteen 46 and Frucor’s CSD Portfolio (which includes Pepsi, Mountain Dew and Appletiser)

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