72andSunny Amsterdam has announced the addition of Ben Armistead as executive strategy director. He will join the office’s leadership team alongside managing director Lauren Portelli, director of production Stephanie Oakley, and executive creative directors Rey Andrade and Laura Visco. Ben’s arrival comes shortly after the recent elevation of Laura Visco to the leadership team, and reinforces the agency’s commitment to putting creativity first and delivering creative excellence and effectiveness.
“From the moment we first met, our gut told us Ben was the right person to lead our strategy department and help drive the agency and our work into amazing new spaces. Ben brings a wealth of experience, as well that contagious excitement of someone who truly believes in the power of creativity,” said Laura. “He’s exactly the kind of partner a creative like me is excited to work alongside, especially as I take on this new role - and he even manages to make my near-native English look rusty with his flawless Spanish-speaking skills.”
A truly global strategic leader, Ben joins from Wieden+Kennedy, where he rebuilt a modern strategy department as the CSO of its London office before joining the global leadership team as the global head of effectiveness with a remit to give the network’s creativity more commercial edge. Before that, he led agencies in Spain and Amsterdam, having started his career in London. Over the years, Ben has teamed up with some of the planet’s biggest and bravest clients, including Nike, Coca-Cola, Heineken, Hewlett-Packard, PlayStation, Visa, Facebook, Electronic Arts, Lurpak, ESPN, United Colors of Benetton, Sainsbury’s, and many others.
In his new role, Ben will be responsible for setting the strategic direction for the agency and overseeing the output for clients such as Google, AbInBev, Coca-Cola, Fanta, Zurich, Woolrich and LikeMeat. Ben has always gravitated towards cultures that value creativity above all else and this move is no different.
“There are only a handful of agencies in the world that are genuinely defined by creativity and 72andSunny has always been one of them." stated Ben. "You take that creative bar and you combine it with brilliant partners who make you laugh and think, plus the opportunity to lead an incredible agency into a new chapter and the mind boggles at what can be done. And you get to do all that in Amsterdam!? That combination is lightning in a bottle.”
With the elevation to the leadership team, Laura will work alongside Rey Andrade in setting the bar for craft and creativity of the Amsterdam office.
“Laura is relentless in the pursuit of great work. In her time at 72andSunny, she’s led some of our most impactful work and it’s been amazing to watch her grow into a leader that pushes us out of our comfort zone and inspires us to make work that impacts culture as much as the business,” said Carlo Cavallone, chief creative officer, 72andSunny.
Laura and Ben, along with the rest of the leadership team, are excited to steer the agency and its clients into the future. As an agency that has been sued by the Vatican, taken on toxic masculinity and championed open minds, 72andSunny knows how to provoke a reaction. As the ways and places people experience brands become ever more varied, the playgrounds for this cultural provocation are more exciting than ever.
Elevating and Recognising Craft
72andSunny Amsterdam has also recently promoted a host of talent, in its commitment to nurture growth and recognise incredible craft across disciplines. Emiliano Trierveiler has been promoted to head writer, a role that celebrates his track record in producing unique storytelling through writing; most recently, Emiliano was one of the lead creatives on Coca-Cola’s ‘Open Like Never Before’, where he collaborated with George the Poet on the poem that was at the heart of the work. In this new role, he leads the development of the craft across the company, supporting 72andSunny Amsterdam’s talent with mentorship and training.
Kelsey Bozanich was promoted to director of communications, bringing comms strategy, corporate comms and PR together under one discipline. In her new role, Kelsey will lead comms strategy thinking for the agency’s partners, while also setting the vision for external communication for the agency.
Maximilian Weigl was also recently elevated to deputy executive strategy director, working alongside Ben in ensuring strategic rigour and innovation. During his time at 72andSunny Amsterdam, he has been helping to push the strategic product and drive business impact for brands like Audi, Google, Samsung and Zurich.