Former leaders of VMLY&R ANZ, including regional CEO Aden Hepburn, have launched a brand experience and innovation (BX) company, Akcelo.
Akcelo has been created to "build brands for the experience era" and delivers a suite of services across creative, customer experience and technology.
Derived from the Esperanto word meaning "acceleration", Akcelo is also working with a number of major local and international brands and has a fully staffed team working across strategy, creative, social, technology, mobility, UX, CX and design.
“The move to invest in improving customer experiences has created a homogenisation of experiences, which while frictionless, can be immediately forgettable," Hepburn says.
“CMO’s and business leaders are looking for partners that are customer obsessed, technically-savvy and also able to deliver creative differentiation. We started Akcelo to bring experience, emotion, creativity and technology together so the brand experience (BX) is memorable across the entire customer journey.”
Joining Hepburn are former VMLY&R regional head of strategy and innovation, Dave Di Veroli and Sydney office managing partner, Miles Scott.
The fully independent company has been appointed by the Lion Australia marketing team across its portfolio of beer brands including Furphy, Guinness, XXXX and James Squire, following a competitive pitch.
Akcelo will deliver brand experiences for Lion with a remit spanning across creative, digital, social, content, CRM, technology and data.
“We are excited to work with Akcelo across a wide remit including our digital, social, content and platforms, as a foundation client," Lion consumer connections director Claire Williams says.
"We’ve already started work together with the successful launch of Furphy Fridays and we’re looking forward to building on that across our portfolio.”
Akcelo's first work for Lion was creating Furphy Fridays, a virtual night at the pub hosted by comedian Matt Okine and Australia cricket captain Aaron Finch.
Hepburn launched WPP’s global digital creative agency VML in Australia in 2012, building it into an award-winning business recognised for delivering creatively transformative work for leading brands including McDonald’s, Netflix and Google.
He later took the helm as CEO of VMLY&R ANZ following the merger of WPP’s global creative agency Y&R with VML in 2018.
He departed the agency mid-last year with Jon Bird replacing him.
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