Brian has been recognised as New Zealand’s foremost brand strategist, having spent the last 30 years advising leading companies in New Zealand, Australia, Asia and Europe.
He has been the architect and principal advisor to many high-profile successful brands in the Asia-Pacific area, including: Zespri, Icebreaker, Cervena, Merino NZ, Fisher & Paykel Appliances, Fisher & Paykel Healthcare, Steinlager Pure, Wools of New Zealand, Holcim Global, America’s Cup, BHP Billiton, Tower Financial Services and Antarctica New Zealand.
He has provided strategy advice on place and city branding to regional authorities such as Tourism Victoria Australia, Central Otago, Auckland, Marlborough and Southland. Country brand strategy advice to the governments of New Zealand, Singapore and Bahrain.
In 1987, Brian founded his own brand strategy consultancy, BRR Limited, now known as Richards Partners. He leads an award-winning team advising governments, companies and communities in defining their point of difference and delivering brand strategy. As one of the founders of New Zealand’s first Masters in Design Management degree from UNITEC, Brian was awarded its first honorary degree in recognition of his contribution. He also has a background in Chartered Accountancy and studied business at INSEAD in France.
In 2007 the Design Institute of New Zealand acknowledged him with their “Outstanding Achievement Award” in recognition of his contribution to the design profession. Brian has contributed to Better by Design over the last seven years. This knowledge has been woven into his latest company Chrysalis, which looks from the outside in, to inspire businesses to reinvent themselves.
Brian believes that understanding customer needs and creating the user experience is the key to unlocking innovation inside organisations. Brian helps industries discover the difference between what people want and what we give them. Then helps individual companies convert these differences into products, services and strategies that deliver superior value.
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