Oliver appoints ECD for Canada and the U.S.

Bernardo Andrada takes on expanded duties at the agency following a string of new assignments south of the border.

Bernardo-Oliver

Oliver’s Bernardo Andrada will move to New York City in March to lead all the agency’s creative work across Canada and U.S.

Andrada, who is currently based in Toronto, has been making weekly trips to the U.S. since August to help support the global agency’s growth in that market, including new client engagements with Adidas, Subway and 7-Eleven. The agency also does work with Unilever, Manulife, WestJet, Bright House, PayPal, Diageo and Microsoft.

“Coming into a new year, with the exponential growth that Oliver is [seeing]… I’ll be splitting my time officially between Canada and the U.S.,” Bernardo says. “It was a very natural progression.”

Last year, Andrada and former Canadian country manager Dave Carey were pulled in by Peter Kuhn, president of Oliver North America, to support rapid growth in the U.S., while servicing some of the clients out of a new creative “hub” in Toronto. Carey has since been named managing director for North America, while Justin Rieder, director of creative operations in Canada, will continue working to position the Canadian hub as a resource for U.S. clients.

Oliver, which creates and embeds creative teams within its clients marketing departments, also has hubs in Toronto and Manhattan that handle the overflow from its internal agencies.

As of May, Canada was Oliver’s fastest-growing market in terms of both new hires and new client assignments.

Overseeing the creative work of the agency’s embedded teams means living out of backpack, says Bernardo. “That’s one of the things that’s really important for us is how we scale, and at the same time [have] some kind of unity, even though we’re physically separated. So for me, I’m a nomad. I haven’t had an office in years.”

But he believes the model is what explains the agency’s recent growth.

“All the clients are coming to us and saying, we need to do more, we need to do better, and we need to do it for less. They need creativity at scale,” the ECD says. “Our belief is that when we put creativity at the core of a client’s business, we’re able to have that proximity of mind, to really understand what’s happening and really bring out the best in our clients. It’s very possible to produce really good work on a regular basis with them.”