Wolff Olins Strengthens Experience and Environmental Team
Wolff Olins has boosted its team of experience designers with the appointment of Markus Nonn to the newly created role of associate creative director, environments.
He will work closely with Martin Hargreaves, who joined Wolff Olins last year as creative director for environmental design and strategy, deepening the consultancy’s global focus on experience design. The two previously worked together at Jaguar Land Rover on the overhaul of its retail format strategy, when Martin was Markus’ client.
In addition, Wolff Olins has hired Shradha Bhatia as strategy director, from Landor & Fitch. She brings a track record of working on transformative projects, with strong experience tackling big complex brand challenges.
Markus - who started his career as an architect at Zaha Hadid’s office before moving into branded environments - joins from Eight Inc where he was senior design director. As well as developing formats for Jaguar Land Rover, other highlights included a retail transformation program for India’s telco giant Airtel. He has also worked with Maserati in Modena to transform their retail network, and worked with the likes of Dolby, Lebua, Future Cities Catapult, Ecco and McLaren.
His remit is to help evolve and further embed the consultancy’s global brand-led experience offer, in particular around environments. Alongside Martin, Markus will act as design lead on projects with an environmental focus, creating tangible and sensual ways to express brands in physical spaces, from new touchpoints and programmes to behaviour, products and services.
“Beyond being purely transactional and operational, physical spaces offer brands rich opportunities and more immersive ways to communicate who they are and what they believe in,” explained Markus. “Architecture has the ability to encourage or discourage behaviour; atmosphere - created through materiality, light, acoustics - subliminally influences the way we feel. I am very excited to be part of this journey at Wolff Olins and look forward to contributing my skillset as an architect and spatial designer to this great team and clients,” he added.
Wayne Deakin, global principal for design, described Markus’ design and architecture experience as the “perfect mix of art and science working seamlessly together to help clients create innovative and creative experiences” for brands. “Consumers and employees are increasingly wanting to connect through physical moments and brand experiences. Markus brings a wealth of international creativity and expertise, helping brands connect in the physical, retail and digital world.”
Sairah Ashman, global CEO, said, “Brand experience is a hugely important growth area for us - a vital and exciting part of the future of brands, helping to create emotional connections between our clients’ brands and their audiences. Markus joins us at a very exciting time where our experience practice is growing and we are unlocking amazing work for our clients to help develop new opportunities in a post-Covid world.”
Appointed as strategy director, Bhatia has extensive experience in leading large-scale corporate brand transformation and delivering brand-led growth for business, with clients including St. James's Place, FGS Global (merger of Finsbury Glover Hering and Sard Verbinnen), Swedbank, Baker Hughes, Aviva and PwC.
Sairah added, “What a fantastic way to start 2023. We’re delighted to welcome Shradha and Markus to the team, at a time when we’re building on an incredible 2022 with an amazing stable of clients. We are partnering with some truly transformative brands right now and I can’t wait to see how they both help elevate the work.”