EDB's next push to raise Singapore's competitive profile

Ogilvy & Mather Asia Pacific in partnership with Singapore’s Economic Development Board (EDB) has launched a new brand innovation unit.

Based in Singapore, K1ND is touted to be the first such brand innovation business in the region with a strong focus on technology and design.

Kelvin Wong, assistant managing director, EDB said: “K1ND’s open collaboration model will allow for the cross-interaction of creative talent across the marketing, design and technology sectors.  K1ND will help brand owners in the region address business challenges and engage the Asian consumer through creative, technology-enabled solutions.”

He added that through the partnership, EDB hopes to “bolster Singapore’s position as the leading Asian hub for marketing and communications activities.”

Just recently, EDB and Ogilvy also launched Marketing Analytics Centre of Excellence, which aims to help global brands penetrate Asian markets more effectively by translating "consumer insights into customised, targeted and measurable marketing strategies.”

This is part of EDB's bigger objective to raise the country’s standards as a digital marketing hub.

(Read also: Why EDB is focusing on the digital ad market and What agencies expect from EDB)

Covering Asia Pacific markets, K1ND will focus on two broad areas:  Digitising product experiences and developing innovative digital services.  The units core team consists of technologists, inventors and cross-disciplinary creatives.

Global food products brand Mondelēz International will be one of the first companies to partner with Ogilvy’s K1ND. In this new partnership, the company’s own innovation lab, Fly Garage, will collaborate with K1ND to create breakthrough, technology-driven consumer experiences. Fly Garage creates digitally-enabled consumer connections for Mondelēz International’s brands.

Bonin Bough, vice president of global media and consumer engagement, Mondelēz International, commented that combining the resources and strengths of the Fly Garage and K1ND, Mondelēz International  hopes to create ground-breaking technology-driven consumer experiences significantly faster, giving the company a competitive advantage in markets like Southeast Asia and Australia.

“Speed and innovation are the currency for a growth company like Mondelēz International, and this partnership will provide a springboard for continued success,” Bough said.

Chris Reitermann, president of O&M Advertising, Asia Pacific, added that K1ND’s approach recognises that brands are increasingly built through consumer experiences rather than imposing brand messages on audiences.

“K1ND will accelerate business practice by harnessing the digital, creative power of the world’s leading agency, while aligning it to a new, radical business model. Functioning like a start-up, K1ND will work independently with clients in a modern office space, enabling us to work through the creative process significantly faster.”