Victory is theirs…

…as Sweet Shop director Sam Holst tastes gold at Cannes, Alt Group continues to win things, shifting PRs, MediaWorks signs up a new Breeze host, ASB’s tech guy is acknowledged for customer service innovations and 2degrees adds a couple of newbies. 

Golden Holst

Youtube Video

Youtube VideoKiwi agencies may not have brought home too many goodies from Cannes, but, since we’re clutching at straws, we can claim one: Kiwi director Sam Holst picked up a gold film Lion for his direction of the latest Otrivin campaign, through Saatchi & Saatchi, Switzerland for the spots ‘Shoe Laces’ and ‘Classroom Craft’.

Holst recently tasted success in the south of France after his short film ‘Meathead’ was one of only nine in the world to screen as part of the Official Selection – In Competition at the 64th Cannes Film Festival. The film is also screening locally throughout July, with upcoming dates at the Melbourne International Film Festival (International Shorts Competition) and also the New Zealand International Film Festival (Homegrown Works on Film).

Alt! Who goes there?

Alt Group has clocked up a few more awards, this time with the I AM identity campaign for Auckland Museum (cross media), the LATE neons (also for Auckland Museum) and the website for renowned New Zealand architectural firm, Warren and Mahoney selected as winners in New York’s 365: AIGA Annual Design competition.

This year only 135 entries were singled out as worthy examples of outstanding design and the competition is widely regarded as the most discerning statement on design excellence, extending a legacy that began more than 90 years ago. The final selections become part of the AIGA Design Archives, joining the physical archive at the Denver Art Museum and are exhibited in a travelling exhibition beginning at the AIGA Design Centre in New York.

The I AM campaign was developed from an acronym of Auckland Museum and is a pattern language developed as part of the identity of the museum, which can be applied across all the museum’s communications. The I AM acronym was used to dramatic effect in large neon letters on the exterior of the museum, combined with the word LATE to promote the Museum’s nighttime events.

Warren and Mahoney, a third generation architectural practice, commissioned Alt Group to design its new website, featuring the practice’s increasingly diverse range of disciplines and projects. The site has expanded Warren and Mahoney’s publishing model, allowing it to respond quickly to events such as the recent Christchurch earthquakes.

In addition to these awards, Alt Group was recently selected as an Official Honoree in the Fashion category of the 2011 Webby awards for its design of the Karen Walker website; selection for inclusion in the UK based Creative Review Annual for their work for Auckland boutique firm, Hudson Gavin Martin, and a bronze in the Art Directors’ Club of New York, also for their I AM campaign.

Leonard hunting

Alison Leonard has been appointed as the new 10am – 2pm announcer on MediaWork’s The Breeze.

Best known for her role as a television judge on Dancing with the Stars, Leonard brings with her a wealth of radio broadcasting experience and is passionate about the music format.

Jeanette Thomas is returning as breakfast newsreader for the station and Tania Burgess, who stepped into the breach at short notice in January, will continue in the role until Leonard becomes available.

Sweetness and light

Anna Sweetman has left her role as Loyalty NZ’s PR manager to take up a new role with Vero in Auckland.

Loyalty NZ is now on the hunt for a replacement and will be employing the services of its agency Sputnik in the meantime.

Shop talk

Janine Russel has joined the pr shop as an account manager. She’s just back from seven years in London and has an events and music background, having worked for the Big Day Out, Warner Music, Polygram and Universal Music.


Tech power

While there’s been a fair amount of criticism directed at ASB for its recent ‘Creating Futures’ ad campaign, it’s received plenty of kudos for customer service innovations. Not surprising then that its chief operating officer Russell Jones was announced as the winner of the 2011 CIO of the Year Award, which celebrates his success and the efforts of the ASB team to transform technology functions across the business.

“Our people and culture are why we lead in technology and this award was earned by a unified technology team committed to delivering the innovations for which we are renowned,” says Jones. “We’re investing further in our technology team development, to grow capabilities and deliver a significant programme of work over the next five years.

“ASB has already had some great firsts over the past year with our Virtual Branch on Facebook and innovative products like Home Equity Release and Save the Change. And we are determined to continue to be the first to deliver innovative solutions for our customers and fundamental improvements to the way New Zealanders bank.”

The judges commented that in a complex and challenging environment, Jones has led a significant organisational and cultural change in one of the largest IT teams in New Zealand.

Two new degrees

2degrees has made two key senior management appointments, with Martyn Levy appointed as head of strategy and business development and Sarah Howells named as head of customer Care.

Levy brings a decade of experience in the telecommunications industry. Most recently he worked in strategy, commercial operations and capital-raising at Woosh Wireless and was previously chief executive of RoamAD, a Wi-Fi equipment vendor serving clients across Asia Pacific, India, Europe and America. He started his career as a finance lawyer in Auckland and Moscow.

Howells was most recently chief executive of Les Mills International. Originally from Wales, she moved to New Zealand in 2007 to become general manager of customer service at Vodafone New Zealand and prior to that she was customer service director at Virgin Media, where she worked for over ten years leading a team of 750 people across operational sites throughout the UK.

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