AFA RECRUITS NEW GM FROM UK AGENCY BODY
The Advertising Federation of Australia has appointed Ian Finlayson, former Finance Director of the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA) as its new General Manager.
Finlayson, 35, an Australian, recently returned to Sydney after 7 years in the UK, where he worked with global and UK agencies to help manage the industry body and advise agencies on financial and management issues. He has particular experience in remuneration negotiations with clients and procurement specialists as well as client agency contracts and the management of Intellectual Property.
AFA Executive Director Lesley Brydon said the appointment would bring a very high level of global advertising industry experience and financial expertise to benefit the AFA and its members.
A chartered accountant, Finlayson worked with accounting firms and was involved in various business ventures in Australia including small businesses of his own and the general management of Hamilton Island, before travelling to Europe. There, he worked with a UK listed Telecoms company before signing on with the IPA.
He will work alongside AFA Executive Director Lesley Brydon to review the AFA’s structure and financial management and bring an even stronger commercial focus to the industry body and will also help the board implement changes that ensure the AFA remains vital and relevant to its membership base.
“The changing nature of the advertising business means the AFA has to continually evolve to meet the needs of an increasingly diversified industry where the speed of change is being hastened with the growth of digital communications.” said Lesley Brydon.
“We need to have global industry knowledge and be able to help agencies adapt to ensure they maintain successful and relevant business models in the face of the changes occurring.
“In the past ten years the AFA has moved from a subscription-based industry body to a commercially focused organization with the bulk of its revenue coming from commercial services, especially education. There is a large potential upside to the education business and the AFA is working to further develop this.”
In his first week at the AFA, Finlayson will be meeting agency finance directors in Sydney and Melbourne to discuss issues and plan a review of the AFA’s business and financial services to agencies.
Finlayson will also help plan special business training programs for smaller agencies and creatives who need to develop their business management skills.
“He will bring a valuable perspective to the business which I am confident will be of real benefit to all members and will also help to attract many smaller and specialist agencies that need help to improve their financial model,“ said Ms Brydon.