In Brief: More awards and new leaders for Zulu

Plus, Shopify lays off roughly 10% of its workforce, and Bob promotes a new account director.

Jessica Hill Robyn Morrissey

Zulu’s new managing directors, front from left: Jessica Hill and Robyn Morrissey.

Zulu Alpha Kilo wins at AdAge’s SATOY, again, and names new managing directors

Zulu Alpha Kilo has received some major recognition from AdAge at its Small Agency of the Year Awards in Chicago, while at the same time promoting two employees with long histories at the agency into a newly created role.

For the fourth time since 2017, Zulu has received International Agency of the Year honours at the gala, this time receiving Gold. Toronto agency Giants and Gentlemen also placed, earning silver in the category. Zulu has also been recognized in this category in 2019 and 2021.

In addition to the International Agency of the Year award, Zulu claimed gold for campaign of the year in the experiential category for its work with SingleCut on its Notes IPA. The agency also received a silver in the pro bono category for its work on the “Micropedia of Microaggressions.”

The recognition comes after the agency promoted Jessica Hill and Robyn Morrissey to newly-created managing director roles this week.

Hill first joined Zulu in 2008 as one of its earliest employees, serving as a group account director and leading on the Bell account before leaving the agency to start an international photography business. She returned to Zulu in 2020 as business group director. Morrissey, meanwhile, joined Zulu in 2012 from John St. as an account director and has been with the agency for the past decade, leading on clients including Bell, Cineplex and Interac.

The promotions are part of an intentional strategy at the agency to develop employees and promote from within. “Creating opportunities for growth within Zulu is one of the most exciting parts of our business,” says Mike Sutton, the agency’s president and CEO. “Jessica and Robyn are both strong leaders who’ve been an integral part of our success in recent years and I’m thrilled to work closely with them to build on our current momentum.”

In their new roles, Morrissey and Hill will be tasked with overseeing Zulu’s 25-person client services team in Toronto and supporting the creative shop’s growth.

The promotions come on the heels of a flurry of other big news for the Toronto-based agency, which recently has launched a new media practice, as well as offices in Vancouver and New York.

Shopify lays off roughly 1,000 staff

Ecommerce tech company Shopify let 10% of its workforce go on Tuesday.

In a blog post on the company website, CEO Tobias Lütke wrote that the company had grown significantly as it bet that ecommerce growth would continue post-pandemic, but said “it’s now clear that bet didn’t pay off” as growth returned roughly to the levels predicted pre-pandemic.

Lütke said most of the impacted positions are in recruiting, support and sales, though it was “also eliminating over-specialized and duplicate roles, as well as some groups that were convenient to have but too far removed from building products.”

When asked if anyone in the company’s marketing, editorial, content or ad product teams had been impacted by the layoffs, a company spokesperson directed strategy back to Lütke’s original statement, though staff from several of those departments in Canada were posting about being laid off on social media Tuesday afternoon.

Bob appoints a new account director

08_37_49-20220712-IMG_9658-Edit_WEB-2Montreal-based creative agency Bob has appointed Sarah-Maude Plante to the position of consulting director.

Plante joined the agency in 2018 and has led on large-scale projects for some of its largest clients, including Rona, Desjardins, Residence Au fil de l’Eau and Les Producteurs de lait du Quebec (Quebec Dairy Farmers).

In her new role, she will bring her expertise in experiential marketing and other skills to bear. “We are in an era where this field (experiential) is evolving at a rapid pace, and it is important for me to support the teams so that our knowledge is always at the cutting edge of technological and creative innovations,” she says.

Plante “has demonstrated a great deal of agility in experiential marketing with this reassuring, winning side, which she brings to all stakeholders,” adds Clauderic Saint-Amand, experiential CD and partner at the agency. “It is this potential that Bob wanted to recognize by making this well-deserved appointment.”