Up to the Minute: Epica announces Olympic category

Plus: New Quebec Tourism VP of marketing, McMillan hires client service lead and more news you may have missed.

Hires, promotions and other news

Ottawa’s McMillan has hired Eric Thrane as VP of client services, leading the agency’s account teams. Thrane joins from Independent Thought, where he was a founding partner in 2009, and has also had leadership positions at Critical Mass, Publicis and Y&R.

Alliance de l’industrie touristique du Québec (Quebec Tourism Industry Alliance) has hired Sébastien Viau as VP of marketing and commercialization. Viau was previously managing director at Lucilab, a non-profit aimed at creating tools to help fight Alzheimer’s disease, but has also held the role of VP at Publicis Montreal and Nurun.

Experiential and shopper marketing agency Brand Momentum has hired April Mattinson as its chief financial officer. Mattinson, previously head of finance at TorStar’s Olive Media division, will oversee the business of the agency’s offices in Mississauga and Montreal, as well as work with agency leadership and clients to develop strategic initiatives. The agency has also hired Serge Kasongo, who has previously worked at Suncor, SNC-Lavalin and Finning Caterpillar, as its talent leader to head up national recruiting efforts.

Sid Lee has promoted Will Travis, formerly CEO of the agency’s U.S. offices in New York and Los Angeles, to U.S. executive chairman and global head growth officer. In his role, Travis is responsible for the agency’s expansion strategy in the U.S., while also collaborating with other agencies in Kyu, the collective Sid Lee joined last year.

The 30th Epica Awards, judged by the global advertising and marketing press, is now open for entries, and will accept submissions until Sept. 30. New this year is the addition of a category dedicated to campaigns related to the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio, in response to the amount of work that was created for this year’s games.

Zulu Alpha Kilo’s “Say No To Spec” is one of 26 campaigns – and the only one to come out of Canada – to be honoured at this year’s Project Isaac awards. The video won in the Management category at the awards, which honours the most inventive ideas of the past year.


As of yesterday, ads are no longer allowed on CBC Radio 2 and ICI Musicque following a decision by the CRTC. The stations were first granted to ability to sell advertising space during broadcasts in 2013, but an application to extend those rights was denied by the governing body, which said CBC didn’t prove that revenue from ads had been used to maintain its investment in radio, a condition of the initial agreement.

Carat Montreal has promoted long-time staffers Michèle Savard and Dominique Verdon to be co-managing directors of the office. Part of the reasoning behind the new leadership is to help the media agency’s goal of being 100% focused on digital platforms by 2020.