Globally awarded planner Dan Bye joins FEDERATION as first chief strategy officer

Globally awarded planner Dan Bye joins FEDERATION as first chief strategy officer

L-R: Sharon Henderson, Dan Bye, Olly Boden-Walker and Brad Collett

FEDERATION has today announced the appointment of its first chief strategy officer Dan Bye.


Bye joins the agency’s leadership team after consulting to FEDERATION for the last year, following a two-year stint setting up his own personal passion project; a specialist bicycle shop with a focus on sustainability.

Bye’s work across a number of clients is internationally recognised and led to him being ranked in the top-ten Planners in The World. He is a WARC and double Global Grand Effie winner and a huge proponent of creative effectiveness and creativity as a tool to drive business performance. Bye brings an unprecedented wealth of international and local market experience to the role, and more than a bit of fame – his work for Skinny, Commbank and Optus propelling the brands to global award status. Recognition for his work has included Grand Effies, a Cannes Lion Titanium Grand Prix, D&AD Black Pencil and the first ever WARC Global Prize for Innovation, amongst others.

In the UK, Bye led brand strategy for major telco brand, Orange. In Australia, he held creative and media senior agency strategic leadership roles with M&C Saatchi, Leo Burnett and OMD and in New Zealand, Bye was group director of strategy within the Clemenger Group.

Says Olly Walker-Boden, managing director, FEDERATION: “There are very few people in Australasia with the strategy chops of Dan. We’ve now worked together on some major wins for both our clients and the agency. Villa Maria, the Co-Operative Bank, DoorDash and KiwiRail, to name a few. Dan’s proven himself over and over again as an indispensable strategy partner to our clients and has made a huge contribution already.’’

Says Sharon Henderson, CEO and founder of FEDERATION: ‘’Dan is one of our industry’s most talented strategy leaders with a unique background across global markets and brands, and leadership experience that spans a trifecta of client-side, media and creative agencies. We’ve had a great year already with Dan working across key projects, so it’s enormously exciting to have him officially on board as chief strategy officer and overall head of strategy for FEDERATION.’’

Bye says the opportunity to join the agency came at exactly the right time for him: ‘’After taking some time to focus on setting-up a business and indulge a lifelong passion and having previously worked in large internationally run groups, alignment with FEDERATION’s values as an independent agency with its commitment to strategic leadership and sustainability were hugely important to me. I’ve enjoyed getting to know the team and have experienced first-hand how the FEDERATION model is genuinely different. There’s an unwavering focus on the business of our client’s business, facilitating creative problem-solving through client partnership and an innovation mindset that unlocks growth to overachieve against business goals and financial targets.“

Bye’s appointment follows the recent promotion of Walker-Boden to managing director and creative leader Brad Collett joining as chief creative officer.

FEDERATION proudly sits as one of New Zealand’s largest and longest established independent agencies, has experienced four years of consistent growth and has enjoyed several notable new client wins in the past twelve months. The agency’s new leadership team plans to strengthen its presence in both Auckland and Wellington, while continuing to support key clients in the Australian market.