Up to the Minute: Exec committee changes at A2C

Plus: New wins for Dyversity, Star Media gives readers a caffeine jolt and more news you may have missed.

Hires, promotions and other news

Experiential shop Free For All Marketing, part of the Environics group of companies, has named Lisa Barrans as its president. Barrans was previously a senior VP at the agency and will now be responsible for strategic leadership, day-to-day management and annual growth. Prior to joining Free For All Marketing in 2008, she was director, marketing and client services at Jam Van. Free For All founder Mary Beth Denomy is now chairperson at the firm, focusing on overall company direction and strategy, including the company’s growth in Toronto and expansion to Vancouver.

Yield Branding has announced two additions to its leadership team. Michael Nitsopoulos took the role of head of design in July, while Zaigham Zulqernain is digital director at the shop. Nitsopoulos was previously founder and creative director at Cinderbloc until 2014, when he joined TMX Equicom (which was then sold to National Public Relations). His client experience includes work for BMO, Bombardier, Canada Post, Fairmont Hotels, New York Fries, RBC, Sobeys, Sun Life and the University of Toronto, among others. Zulqernain, meanwhile, has been a freelance strategy consultant, working with shops including Sid Lee, The&Partnership, Cossette, Critical Mass and DDB.

The Association of Creative Communications Agencies (A2C) has announced changes to its executive committee. François Lacoursière, EVP and senior partner at Sid Lee, is now chair of the board of directors, while Jan-Nicolas Vanderveken, president of Havas Montreal, is now incumbent VP. Benoit Carter, president of Cart1er, is now VP, while Marc Lanouette, president of Tank is now secretary-treasurer. Dominique Villeneuve, general manager of the association since 2012, will now take on the role of CEO.

New business wins

Multicultural marketing shop Dyversity Communications has announced three account wins from the past several months. Over the spring and summer, the agency has picked up work for General Mills’ Honey Nut Cheerios brand, Yellow Pages’ YP Dine app and Canada Post. Work for Honey Nut Cheerios has focused on targeting the multi-generational South Asian family.

Meliá Hotels International has partnered with Toronto’s Bond Brand Loyalty to redesign the customer service experience across its brands, including Gran Meliá Hotels & Resorts, Meliá Hotels & Resorts, ME by Meliá, Paradisus Resorts, Innside by Meliá, Sol Hotels and TRYP by Wyndham. Starting this month, guests of each of the six brands are being invited to participate in sessions in London and Miami to help design Meliá’s service culture.


Zenith has predicted that global ad spend will grow by 4.4% in 2016, reaching $539 billion by the end of this year, up 0.3% from its last forecast in June.

Star Media Group has launched a new service for caffeine fiends with Headline Coffee, a monthly subscription service that will deliver a different 340 gram package of fair trade coffee to subscribers for $20 a month beginning in October.