Konrad Spilva – who stepped down as chief executive of Isobar last March after 18 years with the business – has joined independent publisher Hardie Grant in a consulting role. However, there are also plans for his own consultancy on the horizon.
Spilva’s departure from Dentsu was in the works for some time, the business said last year, and would see him support his wife with their online flower and gifting business, and continue his other ventures: Bridge Road Brewery and data consultancy, Alkhemy.
Earlier this year, Spilva was reportedly in discussions with former Dentsu boss Simon Ryan about being an integral part of Ryan’s new business, Ryancap. But he did not end up being part of the venture – dubbed a holding company, with media agency Ryvalmedia and, as of last week, data and tech business Foxcatcher under the Ryancap umbrella.
At Hardie Grant, Spilva will advise the executive management team across its marketing agencies, book publishing arm, and digital media brands. His initial focus will be on Hardie Grant Media, the marketing network led by Spilva’s former Isobar colleague, Nick Hardie Grant. Two years ago, Hardie Grant Media opened PR agency Tide PR, and acquired production agency Sherpa, which hired a new executive producer last month.
Spilva will advise on further acquisition opportunities, the company said, but will also launch his own consultancy later this year. That business will be focused on “connecting brand, experience and technology transformation with business strategy”, and aimed at Australian businesses.
“Hardie Grant is an amazing success story already and I’m really excited about their vision for the future,” Spilva said.
“Hopefully I can play a small part in helping them realise their ambition to be a multi-platform content and media powerhouse in Australia and abroad.”
Part of his role involves “accelerating the transformation and growth strategy of the group”, Hardie Grant said in a statement.
“Like many companies we have a digital transformation strategy in play, and the COVID era has shown us just how important it is, and how much there is to gain by rapidly accelerating that strategy,” explained chief executive Sandy Grant.
“With that in mind, we intend to make use of Konrad’s skill and experience to navigate the internal and external environments, to look for growth opportunities, and help us come out of this moment even stronger.
“It is time for us to ensure generational change in our leadership team is supported by generational change in our culture, systems and business ambitions.”
Hardie Grant has more than 220 staff across offices in Sydney, Melbourne, London, and San Francisco. It is eyeing up further international expansion.