VMLY&R names head of Defence Force Recruitment account

By Paige Murphy | 12 June 2019

WPP AUNZ-owned VMLY&R has appointed Craig Page to the newly created role of head of planning, Defence Force Recruitment (DFR).

The agency won the account from Host/Havas earlier this year, which AdNews understands saw 50 redundancies made by the incumbent. Prior to it being held by Host/Havas in 2013, the account was held by Y&R for 13 years pre-merger.

Page's remit is to lead both the VMLY&R Melbourne and Sydney teams. He will be based in the Sydney office.

VMLY&R ANZ chief strategy officer Alison Tilling says Page's appointment is central to the agency's commitment to build the Australian Defence Force brand and achieve the "ambitious" recruitment targets, and pivotal to the success of the newly established agency/client partnership.

“We are thrilled to build our team with a strategist and leader of Craig’s calibre," Tilling says.

"His experience makes him a truly integrated thinker, able to combine the best of many worlds for a remarkable new breed of strategy. He is generous with his time and experience, and we feel really fortunate to have him lead the DFR strategy team.”

Page joins from R/GA Sydney where he led the strategy and marketing science teams as executive strategy director, building successful outcomes for brands such as Telstra, Samsung, Toyota, Google and the NRL.

Prior to R/GA he worked for several other creative agencies - both in Australia and overseas - including M&C Saatchi (Sydney and London) supporting brands such as Optus, SONY, eBay and Virgin Mobile, and held the role of in-house digital strategy lead with Foxtel.

“To build brands effectively in today’s market you need the best creative and design thinking working in tandem, without silos, under the same roof," Page says.

"VMLY&R is the first agency I’ve seen doing this in practice and I’m excited to help drive this new model. Even more so with DFR; one of the biggest and bravest accounts in the country, and one of the few who are capable of making the most of everything the agency has to offer.”

Last week, WPP AUNZ announced Jon Bird would take over as CEO of VMLY&R AUNZ following the departure of co-CEOs Aden Hepburn and Pete Bosilkovski.

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