Initiative promotes Chris Colter to chief strategy & product officer

Media agency Initiative has promoted Chris Colter to the role of chief strategy & product officer, effective immediately.

As part of his extended remit, Colter will continue to lead the overall strategic output and team within Initiative, but broaden his impact across the Mediabrands group to elevate the integrated product offering – with a specific focus on performance and e-commerce.

Colter has helped Initiative win or retain $399 million worth of new business in the last three years alone. His tenure as Initiative’s chief strategy officer has also seen them become the most awarded media agency in Australia for their work, producing campaigns such as Swintopia (Swinburne University of Technology), Wonder Recycling Awards (Goodman Fielder), and A Fire Inside (NRMA) which was recently named International Media Plan of the Year by Adweek in the US.

Colter also sits on Initiative’s global product council and will be tasked with importing the best of Initiative’s global product to Australia and scaling work created locally to international markets.

Melissa Fein, CEO Initiative Australia said: “Chris is the definition of a high achiever, always his own harshest critic, he strives for perfection, no task is ever too much for him. Give him a problem and his solution will be creative, bang on brand and results driven, every time. He’s been locally and globally recognized for his work and is one of our most admired talents in the global network. A worthy promotion and I’m grateful he’s taking on this new, expanded and elevated role.”

Fein said: “We have a family culture at Initiative, and we appreciate the real families at home. A big acknowledgement to Colts’ wife Claire and his two beautiful children for the energy and support you give him every day.”

On his promotion Colter said: “Product has always been something I’ve been passionate, or some would say obsessive, about and I’m very fortune to be working at a business that recognises its people’s passions without having to be asked. I look forward to making 2023 Initiative’s most successful year yet.”

Sam Geer national managing director, Initiative said: “His intelligence is only surpassed by his kindness. This role is so well deserved for one of the world’s most special humans who has forever changed the careers of so many in this industry for the better, mine included.”

Colter was elected as MFA Awards Chair earlier this year and continues to actively judge international awards including Spikes and Cannes Young Lions.

An announcement about further senior appointments within Initiative’s strategy team will be made in due course.


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