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Tim O'Kennedy

Tim O'Kennedy


Former managing director

Work Telephone


Fantasy business partner

My constructive demons.

How do you off-set your carbon footprint?

W&K Amsterdam is carbon-neutral. But CO2 is not the world's most pressing problem.

Greatest influence

My demons.



Favourite gadget

KTM 990 Superduke.

Desert island objects

The novels of Patrick O'Brian, a fishing rod, and a very large box of matches.

Most-admired politician

Ronald Reagan. He ended the Cold War, and restored America's sense of self, but they're a little carried away with it these days.

Favourite media

The Guardian, The Economist, The West Wing, BBC World Service.

Biggest risk taken

Taking three years out to sail around the world.

Perfect day

Pretty much any Sunday.

Who should play you in the film of your life?

Bruce Willis. Apparently I look like him, and that's a start.

Career highlights

Saatchis as a junior suit; Chiat/Day LA as vice-president account planning; Wieden & Kennedy Portland as the lead suit on Nike, then Nike Inc as international marketing director. Back to Europe with Nike, then chief operating officer of Lowe Group Europe. Ouch. Founding partner of Circus, then two-and-a-half year circumnavigation on a sailboat with partner. Back, blissfully, at W&K Amsterdam since 2005.

Fictional hero

Jack Aubrey.

Best job outside advertising

Professional skipper.


A difficult final quarter for Wieden & Kennedy Amsterdam. The shock departure of Tim O'Kennedy was followed a week later by its creative director Al Moseley, who left to join Hurrell & Dawson in London. Under O' Kennedy, there were a few highlights. It was the only European ad agency to receive a nomination in this year's Emmy Awards, for its "happiness factory" spot for Coca-Cola.

Most expensive purchase

KTM 990 Superduke.

Why are you good at what you do?

Principled, consistent, persuasive and pretty much indefatigable.

Additional Information

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