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industry leaders

The region's most senior gathering of agency executives. Bar none.

Brad Simms
GALE Global CEO & Founder + Crispin Porter Bogusky Global CEO ,
Lisa Ortner-Ghouze
Global Head of Marketing, Financial Markets , Standard Chartered
Tracey Spicer AM GAICD
Multiple Walkley Award winning author, journalist and broadcaster ,


hours in the Hunter Valley

Where the leaders go.

Join the who’s who of adland at the 11th Agency Leaders Symposium, the region’s only conference dedicated to the business of running a modern agency.

Over the past 11 years, the Symposium has forged an outstanding reputation for providing agency leaders the space and time to have unfiltered discussions with peers under Chatham House rules while being inspired and informed by content designed to stretch your thinking.

Quite simply: there is nothing like it in the region.

Over 1.5 days you will learn, discuss, debate, and collaborate, on how agencies can best position their people and businesses for the competitive and volatile road ahead, including actions you can take right now to set you up for success.

Hear from the most influential minds in the industry on topics including;
– Economic Outlook
– What Clients Want and Need
– The Walk and Talk and Value of an Agency
– Cause, Creative and Effect
– Doing More with Less
– AI – The Bigger Picture
– Creating Resilient Workplace Strategies
– The Real CEO
– First Nations Thinking
– Indie Rock & Roll or a Pivoting Pandemonium?

See further details on these key themes

The conference program has been crafted with help from a highly influential advisory board of agency leaders. Click the ‘Apply for your place’ button to join the most senior delegation of agency executives to gather in ANZ. We look forward to welcoming you to the Agency Leaders Symposium 2023.


Agency Leaders Symposium 2023

Rydges Resort Hunter Valley
formerly the Crowne Plaza

430 Wine Country Dr
Lovedale NSW 2325


Tuesday 28 – Wednesday 29 November 2023


C-Level Executives
Managing Directors
General Manager
Heads of Investment
Heads of Strategy
Heads of Creative
Heads of Digital
Head of Trading / Programmatic


Apply for your place.

Key themes

Economic Outlook

A look at the top news and trends set to impact the media and marketing sector in Australia in 2024.

What Clients Want and Need

An honest view on what CMOs want and need – as well as a look at the evergreen challenge of agencies swimming upstream to give it all.

The Walk and Talk and Value of an Agency

What are top marketers doing to protect their overall marketing budgets which so often get cut when times are hard? We’ll also hear from CMOs who dabbled in-house – only to soon realise value from agency partners has never been more vital.

Cause, Creative and Effect

We go behind the scenes of arguably one of the most effective ad campaigns to date and the minds behind it.

Doing More with Less

With the bottom-line well and truly squeezed, this panel of top industry CFOs will discuss challenges around maintaining margin and more.

AI – The Bigger Picture

When it comes to artificial intelligence, leaders must think about a much bigger picture and how they can play a part in improving the outcomes. Here, we’ll expose the bias and discrimination embedded in this constellation of technologies, and the ethical conundrums we face at home and in the workplace.

Creating Resilient Workplace Strategies

Helping leaders create robust workplace environments, particularly in the current climate, has never been more important. We’ll jump into the weeds of creating resilient workplace strategies that empower leaders to thrive in dynamic environments.

The Real CEO

In this candid panel we’ll hear from a trio of top CEOs about their biggest and very real failings, and just how it impacted them both personally and professionally.

First Nations Thinking

What are we as an industry doing to profoundly influence social change with respect to First Nations peoples and how do we empower leaders to do more?

Indie Rock & Roll or a Pivoting Pandemonium?

Times seem good for Aussie indies but is it all rock n roll and green shoots? From exploring differing growth hotspots to pivoting models, admitting vulnerabilities and sharing speed bumps ahead for 2024, this burgeoning group of entrepreneurs will explore all – the good, the bad and the ugly too.

2023 Agency Leaders Symposium Advisory Board…Driving the agency agenda…

Jane Stanley

Hearts & Science


Amy Bradshaw


MD / Head of Australia

Nick Behr


CEO and Founder

Virginia Hyland

Havas Media Group Australia

Chief Executive Officer

Yatu Widder Hunt
Yatu Widders Hunt

Cox Inall Ridgeway

General Manager

Melissa Fein
Melissa Fein

Initiative Australia

Chief Executive Officer

Jack Watts
Jack Watts


Group CEO

Phil McDonald

BCM Group

Group Partner and Managing Director

Simone Waugh

Publicis Worldwide

Managing Director QLD

Dan Beaumont
Dan Beaumont

The Royals

Managing Partner

Here’s what you can expect


Speakers have been hand selected by an experienced Advisory Board of your peers


An invitation-only event attracting most influential agency leaders


A rare opportunity to share ideas and challenges openly with peers. With no trade press present.


Gain a new perspective on how to keep winning in our changing landscape

Jacquie Alley

EXTREMELY VALUABLE The Agency Leaders Symposium is a chance to network and collaborate with other agency leaders and sponsoring media partners. Being an agency leader can be lonely at times so having this comradery with those who truly understand the highs and the lows is extremely valuable

Chris Colter

GREAT CONNECTIONS The Agency Leaders symposium never disappoints. Lots of great connections, a full notebook of outtakes and all round great time. Would definitely recommend.

Dave Mooney

100% RECOMMEND The event was terrific. It was great to get away for a few days in a room full of smart, interesting people talking about smart, interesting things. Would 100% recommend and will be back next year.



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rightsmartestMost Senior


The power of the symposium will be enhanced by the quality, energy and diversity of the people you meet, who will bring their ideas to the gathering while enriching our many conversations. Our way to ensure the quality of the experience is to handpick the most exciting and imaginative group of people and bring them together.

Agency Leaders Symposium highlight
Agency Leaders Symposium highlight