Big wheel keep on turning…

…as SEEK goes on a job hunt of its own, The Sweet Shop appoints an appropriately named executive producer in Australia, Acumen Republic shores up its newish Aussie office with a big signing, SOAR printing announces a new operations manager and Pride in Print announces its new judging convenor.

Seek finds

Janet Faulding has been appointed as SEEK’s New Zealand general manager, replacing Annemarie Duff, who returned to TVNZ late last year.

Faulding brings a wealth of both local and international expertise in the media industry to the role and joins SEEK after 14 years at Mediaworks, where she is currently general manager of the radio division. Her numerous achievements there include the establishment of Solid Gold radio, the creation of the Radio Training School and a secondment role as the chief executive of CanWest Media in Turkey.

“SEEK is a brand I have always admired. I’m excited about joining such a successful team and a company that is an industry leader,” she says.

SEEK’s managing director Joe Powell says Faulding’s appointment is significant because its number 1 position in the market is largely due to the talented people in the ranks.

“Janet will be joining a fantastic team that has achieved market leadership in every sense; the country’s highest number of job listings, the most unique browsers and the best possible job seeking experience.”

The appointment is effective from 14 February.

Sweetlands for my Sweets

The appropriately named Wilf Sweetland has been appointed as executive producer/managing director of The Sweet Shop for Australia following the relocation of George Mackenzie to Auckland.

“To say this is a rare opportunity is an understatement. Having admired and respected The Sweet Shop from afar, I was certainly honoured and extremely pleased to receive an invitation to join the team. It’s an exciting time, there is a lot of change going on in our industry, I believe The Sweet Shop is a big part of what’s coming next,” Sweetland says.

Australian born Sweetland started out pursuing acting, a career choice that swiftly lead him to film production, and after a sojourn in LA, he returned home to work in TVCs and finally ended up at Exit Films as a producer for Mark Molloy.

“Producing commercials in different countries can be truly challenging, yet also inspiring,” Sweetland says. “Having spent time working in the local, US and European markets, I have been able to develop a global perspective on advertising production. As the market continues to question traditional production methodology, that experience will be all important when it comes to The Sweet Shop’s continuing ability to deliver world class craft to the Australian market.”

George Mackenzie also shifts to Auckland to take up a role as managing director of Asia Pacific & MENA.

“Australasia is not only our home, it’s also a very important market. Increasing the company’s commitment to the region’s creative community is a reflection of just how important. Wilf is the right person to lead the next phase in Australia, as we look to expand our offering through the addition of local directors to our global roster. As for me, I am sad to say adieu to Sydney after 11 good years but I am also very excited about my new regional role in Auckland and the fact my move coincides with New Zealand hosting the Rugby World Cup should be seen as coincidence only.”

Paul Prince chief executive/founding partner says he’s flattered to have Sweetland join the executive team.

“His and George’s leadership and their understanding of modern Advertising mean The Sweet Shop will continue to work with our directors and Australasian Clients to create innovative campaigns that attract and entertain customers, in this contemporary communications landscape.”

Aussie Acumen

Acumen Republic, one of New Zealand’s most established PR agencies, has expanded further into the Australian market with the appointment of a general manager for Australia, former Hill & Knowlton practice director, Myrna Van Pelt.

“2011 will be a year of growth for the Acumen Republic brand across the Trans Tasman. Under Myrna’s management, we have faith and expectation that the Australian market will yield strong results for our business,” says managing director of Acumen Republic, Michael Dunlop. “We selected Myrna Van Pelt from a wide field of Australian candidates and we’re excited to have secured someone of this calibre to spearhead and rapidly expand our presence in this market. The skills and reputation from her senior agency and in-house roles across the last 15 years will help to steer the business in the right direction.

Acumen Republic, which has been operating for over 30 years in the New Zealand market, has held flagship accounts in telecommunications, financial services, building and construction and the health sector. Their broad service offer includes corporate PR, public affairs, government and investor relations, and consumer marketing, as well as a range of complimentary services in design, event activation and research. The Sydney office has been running for one year.

“Having led the technology practice for nine years for Hill & Knowlton, leading the analyst relations practice across Asia Pacific, and previously having held senior corporate affairs roles at Telstra and Apple, Myrna brings a rich depth of consulting leadership skills to take Acumen Republic to the next level,” Dunlop says. “We also see this appointment as critical in providing local senior leadership for our foundation client in Australia, Alcatel-Lucent with a parallel mandate to grow the client stable across a broad sector portfolio in this market.”

Van Pelt commences her role on 14 February.

On the hunt

Trudy Hunt has joined Dow Design as account director. Previously she was account director at Designworks and account manager at Redcactus and she has 12 years’ experience across branding and design project management in New Zealand and the UK.

Her expertise includes brand identity and development, event sponsorship, packaging design and corporate communications and she has worked on the likes of Goodman Fielder, Unitec, Gen-i, AucklandPlus, Telecom, Eta, Nice & Natural and Griffin’s.

SOAR point

Chris Agius has been appointed operations manager of packaging and commercial printing outfit SOAR Printing, the country’s first printer to achieve Landcare Research’s carboNZero certification.

Agius, who has extensive experience in the printing industry both in New Zealand and Australia, was previously general manager sales: branch leader of Heidelberg New Zealand.

Print pride

Former Wickliffe Group manufacturing manager John Wills has been appointed as the new Pride In Print judging panel convenor.

“I’m honoured in that I felt my appointment was representative and recognition of the great contribution Southern Printers, both companies and individuals, have made to the New Zealand printing industry,” he says. “As someone who experienced the introduction of Pride In Print to the industry in 1993, I am aware of some of the excellent outcomes achieved since. Particularly in terms of the enhanced respect, both in and outside the industry, for the quality of the remarkable work achieved year after year.”

Officially retired in 2005, Wills had a long and successful career in management with Wickliffe, evolving from a Reel Fed Apprenticeship in 1969. He has also briefly acted as operations manager for Security Plastics and been a member of the Management Advisory Group to the Board of PrintNZ and President of the Otago Print Industry Association.

Wills succeeds Rainbow Print proprietor Graeme Duncan who has had to withdraw from the position due to work and personal circumstances. Having acted as judge and then assistant convenor over the past four years, Duncan had only recently taken over the role from gardyneHOLT Partner Fraser Gardyne.

This year’s Pride In Print Awards Evening is being hosted in Christchurch on May 20.

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