Akcelo snares Simon McCrudden from HERO / McCann for partner, group brand strategy role

Akcelo snares Simon McCrudden from HERO / McCann for partner, group brand strategy role

Akcelo has appointed former HERO/McCann chief strategy officer Simon McCrudden (above left) as partner, group brand strategy, based in the Melbourne office, to deepen the company’s brand capability across local and international markets.


McCrudden joined McCann Melbourne in 2019 as managing partner – strategy. During his time at the agency McCrudden saw HERO/McCann win multiple pieces of new business including Toyota, Pernod Ricard and Sustainability Victoria. In addition, his campaigns for Victoria Police and WorkSafe were recognised at the APAC Effies amongst others.

Working alongside Akcelo’s chief strategy officer and partner, Dave Di Veroli and Jon Kenyon (above right), Melbourne managing partner, McCrudden will oversee brand strategy, research and effectiveness for Akcelo’s portfolio of Australian and global clients across its network of offices in Sydney, Melbourne and North America.

Says Di Veroli: “Having Simon join the team helps round out Akcelo’s strategic firepower across CX, communications and brand planning. Blending his deep brand smarts with Akcelo’s innovative model, whilst also focusing on research and effectiveness, will only boost our team’s ability to deliver powerful brand experiences for our clients.”

McCrudden has worked at internationally awarded agencies, including executive planning director and chief strategy officer roles at BMF, McCann Worldgroup and J. Walter Thompson. Prior to moving to Australia, he held a senior strategy position at Wieden + Kennedy London.

Says McCrudden: “Having the chance to join Aden, Dave, Jon and the rest of the team was too good to pass up. Of every agency out there at the moment, I feel that Akcelo offers something truly unique, and an environment where I can continue to learn and grow. The scope and quality of their offer is second to none, and I look forward to helping them continue to redefine what marketers can expect their agency partners to deliver for them.”

Says Aden Hepburn, CEO at Akcelo: “Brands have so many opportunities to build deep connections with consumers, but it has never been harder to create a memorable, lasting impact with them. Akcelo creates distinctive and holistic experiences that deliver outsized growth and impact and Simon’s extensive global and local experience at leading agencies, together with his creative drive, further boosts our ability to advance great outcomes for our clients.”

Since launching in 2020, Akcelo has experienced exponential growth, working with leading Australian and international brands across entertainment, technology, QSR, sports, lifestyle and FMCG.