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Summit delves into disruptive design



Things are set to get a little disruptive this week as close to 400 CEOs and senior managers from a wide range of New Zealand businesses descend on Auckland’s Villa Maria for New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE)’s sixth Better by Design CEO Summit.

Held on Tuesday 22 and Wednesday 23 October, the theme of this year’s Summit is ‘Disrupt by Design’. Delegates will spend two days immersed in both the theory and real world examples of design thinking, design integration and design disruption, gaining valuable insights from those that are reinventing success in their industries.

“This year’s Summit brings together global and local thinkers and doers who have successfully used disruption to create tangible change in their industries, and who are also working with others to make it happen. It’s also an opportunity to tell our own stories and to be inspired by New Zealand companies using design to transform themselves,” comments NZTE’s Better by Design Director Melissa Jenner.

“In a global marketplace where competition is fierce, being ‘great’ is no longer good enough. The game changers are those that take risks and one of the few ways left to achieve sustainable success is to disrupt by design.”

Jenner says companies can use design to disrupt their business model, their distribution strategy, and their marketplace.

“By being brave and exploring the unknown, companies are more likely to achieve turbo-charged growth.”

Key speakers at the CEO Summit include:

• Aura Oslapas: The former Senior Vice President and Chief Design Officer of Best Buy has helped transform the consumer electronics company into the clear authority and destination for technology products and services in the consumer-driven, omni-channel world.
• Ken Hong is General Manager of Weibo Marketing Strategy at Sina, a Chinese online media company for Chinese communities around the world, specialising in digital/social media marketing and corporate strategy planning.
• Rainer Wessler, Executive Creative Director of Shanghai-based global design and innovation firm frog, has more than 13 years of experience in strategic design, innovation strategy, and concept design, helping clients in the consumer electronics, automotive, finance and retail sectors.
• Jeanne Liedtka is a Professor at the Darden Graduate School of Business at the University of Virginia, where she teaches both MBAs and executives and consults on innovation and design thinking, organic growth and strategic thinking.
• Dave Gilboa is Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Warby Parker, a transformative lifestyle brand offering designer eyewear at a good price while leading the way for socially-conscious businesses.
• David Kester, the former Head of UK Design Council, is a champion of design and has spent the last ten years helping businesses adapt and innovate.
• Keith Yamashita, founder and chairman of SY Partners and Co-founder of Unstuck, returns after a stellar introduction at last year’s Summit. For the past two decades, Keith has led SY Partners, a practice that collaborates with CEOs and their leadership teams to build great companies.
• Derek Handley is the founding CEO of not-for-profit initiative The B Team, Co-Founder of marketing and media company The Hyperfactory, and Co-Founder and Chairman of mobile advertising network Snakk Media.
• Rob Fyfe, Former CEO of Air NZ, Executive Chairman of Icebreaker
• Trey Ratcliff, photographer, artist, writer, adventurer, social media guru and disruptor of photography.
• Mark Pennington, Principal at markpenningtondesign. Mark’s design career spans 40 years, with proven experience in strategic design and planning, establishing commercial licences and engaging global partners.

The 2013 CEO Summit is sponsored by ANZ, AUT University, Air New Zealand and Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development (ATEED). For more information about the Summit visit

About the Summit

Held every 18 months, NZTE’s Better by Design CEO Summit is one of the most dynamic events on the business calendar, showcasing some of the world’s top design thinkers and practitioners.

The Summit offers delegates the opportunity to be immersed in both the theory and real world examples of design integration, gaining insights that are inspiring, relevant and applicable to New Zealand businesses.

In addition to two days of inspiration, the Summit also provides delegates with the opportunity to be part of a learning community of business people and designers who are committed to fostering design-led innovation within New Zealand businesses. It follows closely on from Better by Design’s US study tour in May this year where participants visited the likes of Apple, Paypal, Stanford D.School and Google.


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