Onboard the people mover

A tasty antipasto plate of new and exciting appointments.

Growth Spurts

DDB New Zealand has made its third senior appointment in as many weeks with Aimee McCammon, a former general manager of Peter Jackson’s Park Road Post-production business, joining as group business director to  oversee the NZ Lotteries and Wattie’s accounts.

McCammon, who has been contracting at DDB for the past three months, has 10 years of advertising experience, including five at Saatchi’s in New Zealand and New York.

It was announced DraftFCB’s managing director Justin Mowday would be shifting to DDB a few weeks back and DDB NZ chief executive Sandy Moore says continued expansion at the agency has prompted the added strengthening of its management team.

“Our recent growth spurt is behind the new appointments. We are thrilled to have someone of Aimee’s calibre and pedigree on the team.”

Fulla Beans

Speaking of Wattie’s, Heinz Wattie’s managing director Nigel Comer has been appointed regional chief executive Pacific, for HJ Heinz, with responsibility for New Zealand, Japan, Korea and Papua New Guinea. He will continue to be based in Auckland.

Comer is a 30-year veteran of the Wattie’s businesses and has previously held senior management positions in former divisions of the company, including J. Wattie Foods (canned recipe products) and Best Friend Pet Foods. He has held the senior sales and marketing role for the business in New Zealand and Australia, playing a leading role in developing Heinz Wattie’s exports and consolidating manufacturing capabilities from across the region into the company’s Hawke’s Bay plants.

Comer became managing director of Heinz Wattie’s (Watties is celebrating its 75th Anniversary this year) eight years ago and has overseen a remarkable period of sustained growth and development across the business: 56 percent of the company’s total production is now exported, which is counter to the trend in the New Zealand food industry where 75 percent of the products with which Wattie’s competes are now imported. The company also processes 130,000 of locally grown fruit and vegetables each year.

Heinz executive president for Asia Pacific Chris Warmoth says Comer has an established record and reputation within Heinz internationally for building and maintaining business growth based on brand, product innovation and customer service.

And Comer: “I am delighted with the opportunity to take on a wider regional role with HJ Heinz, while continuing with the Wattie’s business which has been my passion for so much of my career. I’m honoured to be with a company with such a rich heritage and a strong future.”

New Peads

“Specialist independent brand building public relations consultancy” Pead PR has appointed three new staff to the roster: Candice Bowen will replace Kelly Grindle as account director of the agency’s dedicated consumer brands and fashion team, Esmée Dunlop will be senior account manager in the consumer electronics and technology group and Parveen Chiba will act as account executive in the food team.

Bowen has a Bachelor of Broadcasting Communication (Journalism) degree from the NZ Broadcasting School and a Graduate Diploma in Communication Management and PR from AUT and was most recentlyan account manager, consumer brands and healthcare at Euro RSCG Biss Lancaster in the UK and she has worked in PR and as a news reporter on network radio and in regional television.

Dunlop recently returned to New Zealand from Europe where she worked in a technology-focused PR agency based in London including a secondment to Nikon’s European head office in Amsterdam. She has a Bachelor of Communications Studies degree from AUT and began her PR career in New Zealand.

Chiba worked as a reporter at the Christchurch Star while studying at University of Cantebury and most recently spent time as an intern at a PR, marketing and events agency in Mumbai, India.

Lighting the Fuse

Activation and PR agency Fuse, which had its first year in 2009, has nabbed Jeremy Leonard as its new general manager, adding two decades (and three continents) worth of domestic and international marketing experience across a range of industries to the one year old company.

“The opportunity to grow Fuse and develop a credible, recognisable and creative footprint everywhere we go is an exciting challenge. We already have a great team on board and the only way from here is up.”

Fuse says Leonard’s success in building businesses from the ground up, creating bespoke partnerships and marketing initiatives, coupled with his extensive experience and understanding of the agency landscape make him the perfect candidate to continue the delivery of triumphant results for new clients at Fuse.

Tongue and chic

New Zealand songwriter and recording artist Jan Hellriegel has been appointed general manager of Native Tongue New Zealand.

Hellriegel has spent the past few years working in marketing, advertising and sales and, in that time, Native Tongue managing director, Chris Gough says she has acquired a range of different skills across communications, relationship building and sales techniques.

“Not only is Jan a highly credible writer and performer in her own right, she also has an extensive knowledge of the local industry and is well known to most people working in it. Add her all-round business experience and we believe Jan will help develop new opportunities for Native Tongue and its roster of local and international song writers.”

Hellriegel says getting to work with so many talented local songwriters, as well as prestigious international catalogues is “like a dream come true”.

Hellriegel will replace Savina Kim who spent two and half years with the company and has left to work in live promotion.

Gough: “Thanks to Savina for everything she has done while helping build Native Tongue into the most active independent publisher in Australasia. Without her efforts we would not have the great New Zealand roster we have at the moment. Savina has also been a great champion of our international catalogues and we wish her well for the future.”

Native Tongue has offices in Auckland, Melbourne and London and has placed its local copyrights in a wide range of feature films, television series and television commercials in Australia and New Zealand.

His Space

MySpace and IGN Entertainment recently promoted Nick Love to the role of managing director. Formerly the executive director business development Asia Pacific, and one of the compnay’s first local hires, Love’s new role sees him managing all commercial, operational and strategic functions for MySpace Australasia as well as Australian operations for IGN.com & AskMen.com.

Prior to joining MySpace in 2006, Love held senior commercial positions for a range of technology and entertainment companies including Electronic Arts, Soundbuzz, ARIA and ICE Interactive.

Rebekah Horne, managing director and senior vice president of MySpace International says Love’s commercial, digital and strategic acumen will help him steer Australasian operations for MySpace, IGN and AskMen into the next phase of growth. Rupert Murdoch, Newscorp mogul and owner of MySpace, admitted recently the company had made some big mistakes after the US$150 million loss in the company’s third quarter was announced. But he’s confident the tide is now turning.

Closer to home, Love has spearheaded key initiatives for MySpace’s mobile and online properties and played a pivotal role in launching MySpace Music in the Australian and New Zealand markets.

Of his new appointment Love says: “I am delighted to be leading the charge in the region for these three brands: MySpace is in the process of defining how people discover content and be discovered across the web, while AskMen and IGN have shown terrific growth over the past year.”

He says the company is launching a range of new products across all three sites this year.

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