Archive for the Inspirational People Category

Sasha at WMC 2011 in Miami

Posted in #worldview, Culture, Inspirational People, Music on 08/03/2011 by nicka77

The legend that is Sasha rocked the opening of WMC 2011 on Sunday 6th March at Set nightclub, laying down a succession of twisted, high-octane beats for an intimate crowd to enjoy late into the Miami night. WMC 2011 kicks off for real today, Tuesday 8th, but Sasha got the unofficial party started with his unique brand of intelligent, deep, trance-oriented house. A brilliant set. A brilliant start to the week. Check out my video of the night here.

The one downside was the old ‘velvet rope scrum’ that is unique to Miami. What on earth is wrong with a queue? I know I sound like an old fogey, but queuing has stood the test of time, and even the Italians can do it now. Struggling to get the attentions of a power-crazed doorman who thrives on favours, handouts and nepotism is ridiculous. Even with tickets we had to battle our way through the silicone breasts and perfectly chiseled cheekbones to get in. Absurd. And unfortunately the door policy of “who do you know?” meant that the crowd, broadly, had no idea of the genius on the decks. But saying all that, Set is a cool nightclub, intimate and classy, and a good portion of the crowd were totally into the music and appreciated seeing Sasha close up and personal.

Can’t wait for the rest of WMC 2011 to kick off.


Range Rover Evoque – The Pulse of the City

Posted in Brand, Culture, Digital, Innovation, Inspirational People, Marketing, Social Media, Technology, Travel on 15/11/2010 by nicka77

Currently in LA for the latest phase of the Range Rover Evoque ‘Pulse of the City’ campaign I have been working on at The Brooklyn Brothers this year. The Coupe was launched in Paris, and the 5-door is launched this Wednesday – wouldn’t mind one myself if I’m honest – very cool car. Check out our Hello Evoque website to find out more about the project.



Very lucky to be working on this brand and this campaign, and indeed to be staying at a cool hotel with a very tasty little rooftop pool with stunning views over the shimmering diaspora that is Los Angeles. Looks incredible as the sun rises. But I digress.

We’ve got some cool geo-art type chicanery with OK Go coming up this week, and have been having fun with the campaign in great cities like Sydney, Sao Paulo and Paris to date. Check out the OK Go invite video below, plus some of the shots/videos from our activities and collaborations with cool artists, photographers, and designers so far. I’ve also added a few videos from our City Shapers, telling us about what they love about their cites and what inspires them.

There’ll be loads more over the coming months, so check out the website, stay tuned to the blog to see what we get up to, and download the app to get involved yourself.


Invitation to play with OK Go and get involved in our geo-art project


Fun & games in Sydney


Making a splash in Sao Paulo



Partying it up in Paris


Turning the streets of Paris into art galleries



Some amazing UV shenanigans with Timothy Saccenti and the GPS-wrapped Spy Cars


A smattering of our City Shaper videos


Barack Obama – forging a legacy in stone

Posted in #worldview, Culture, Economics, Inspirational People, The Truth Is Out There on 19/04/2010 by nicka77

Not content with having forced through health reforms against extreme and vitriolic political obstinacy, Barack Obama is turning his attentions to the much-needed reform of the banking sector.

It is a much repeated phrase in America, that “Main Street must never again be so reliant on Wall Street”, and it is the hypocrisy and self-indulgent ideology of bankers that will now come under genuine, tangible scrutiny for the very first time since the global economy crashed almost 2 years ago, as a result of the fraud charges brought by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) against Goldman Sachs.

In a few days time, Barack Obama will debate his banking reforms with The Senate in another round of hand-wringing, shaking of heads and venomous attacks on this “Communist” by Republicans and, even, some Democrats. It is no surprise that the timing of the charge of fraud being brought by the US SEC against Goldman Sachs is so aptly timed, and it is for this reason that I state that this will be the first tangible scrutinisation of the industry since the crash.

Up until now, Governments the world over have quite rightly focused their minds on saving the banking sector, utilising public sector funds in which to do so, thereby ensuring ordinary tax payers are not left totally bereft due to the actions of a small number of self-centred imbeciles. Only now, given that the global economy has stabilised, and investigators have had time to build water-tight cases, is the time right to bring lawsuits against those who brought the crash to bear.

In my opinion, it would be the wrong thing to do if banks and bankers had demonstrated some sort of remorse or indeed willingness to change their worst practices. However, the fact that Goldman Sachs have a huge $20bn war chest to dish out in bonuses this year speaks absolute volumes. They haven’t changed. They will never change. Unless they are forced to change through structural, regulatory and litigious force.

And that’s why this legal action brought against Goldman Sachs, and all the subsequent legal actions that will be brought against a variety of the worst offenders, is a hugely unfortunate necessity if the global banking system is ever to be rebalanced in favour of the ordinary man on the street. It is hugely unfortunate that this is necessary, because I believe that this legal action will be the spark that ignites a double-dip recession.

With the threat of legal action against fraudulent collusive practices between and within the murky worlds of hedge funds, investment banks and market analysts, the banks will once again close up shop, strangling the liquidity necessary to stimulate and fuel business in every corner of the globe. This will lead to another bout of job cuts, misery, and bankruptcies, as well as create a catalyst for further lurches towards extremist and non-mainstream political parties.

However, it is a legal action that, despite the short- to medium-term pain, is absolutely necessary in the longer-term. Just as America will have to go through huge amounts of pain to restructure it’s health system, the World will have to suffer yet more pain while the global banking system finally gets the attention it has deserved ever since bringing the economy close to total collapse.

Barack Obama is making very tough choices, and shying away from not one single battle.

He is the President that America needs, and he is the American President that the World needs.

All power to him. I believe his legacy will be unparalleled.

Wimbledon 09 – history beckons

Posted in Inspirational People, Sport on 26/06/2009 by nicka77

With Nadal out due to his dodgy knees, and Murray cruising through the first two rounds, it looks as though we may have a historic Wimbledon final to savour.

If the QF’s & SF’s go to form, it will be Federer v Murray, the final that every Brit is hoping for.

Can Murray become the first male Briton to win Wimbledon since Fred Perry in 1936? He has the talent and, now, the maturity and physical presence to make the final an epic encounter.

But Federer is on track to become the most successful player of all time… after his historic Roland Garros victory, he now stands on the threshold of true greatness, of tennis immortality…. hoping that his 6th Wimbledon title will be his 15th Grand Slam, taking him beyond the all time record set by Pete Sampras.

The Fed is a legend in his own lifetime, conquering everyone who crossed his path with grace, style, finesse and power…. until Rafa came along, that is.

However, the problem with Rafael Nadal (as with Ronaldo, the Brazilian) is that his body is simply too powerful for his knees…. it may be that his style of play has already worn the joints beyond their peak, and that Rafa will never again reach the heights that have seen him challenge Federer’s hegemony (Nadal has won 6 Grand Slams at the age of 23, beating Federer 13 times in the 20 games they have played against each other). I certainly hope he can come back, but then I always hoped Ronaldo would be able to re-produce the magic of his days at Barcelona… depressingly, it never happened.

But back to this year’s Championship…. Murray is not in the same league as Federer or Nadal yet… he can’t be considered in their class because he has yet to win a major… but he is the first male Brit in over 60 years to have a genuine chance of reaching the final and actually winning it (Henman definitely doesn’t count).

On the day, if Murray can channel the pressure from the crowd positively, if he can play his peak game, and if Federer lets the pressure of winning No.15 get to him, it could be a famous day in the history of British tennis.

I am definitely jumping the gun here, and there are numerous others who could make the final – Leyton Hewitt, Andy Roddick and Davydenko are all in Murray’s half of the draw, so the route to the final will be anything but easy. Additionally, there is the always dangerous Djokovic who looks like he may be regaining some of his old form.

But I can dream…. a Federer v Murray final would be absolutely phenomenal… and whoever won, we would be witnessing history being written before our eyes.

Michael Jackson RIP

Posted in Inspirational People, Music on 26/06/2009 by nicka77

May the great man rest in peace, leaving behind the demons that have plagued him in the last years of his life.

A genius, no doubt, who created some of the most awe-inspiring music, and dance moves, of the last Century, his legacy was tarnished by his inability to deal with the fame and adoration that was bestowed upon him.

In death, let us remember MJ as he should be remembered, as The King Of Pop, a man who brought joy to millions.

TED – Ideas for India’s future

Posted in Culture, Economics, Inspirational People, The Truth Is Out There on 14/05/2009 by nicka77

This is a talk, just published by TED, where Nandan Nilekani discusses his vision for India’s future.

This is an excellent presentation, in which Nandan gives a fantastic summary of the ideologies that have made India what it is today, and what it will be tomorrow.


Well worth a look.

And for those who don’t know TED, it is possibly the best website around – their motto is ‘Ideas Worth Spreading’ – so check it out:


Posted in #worldview, Advertising, Brand, Culture, Digital, Economics, Inspirational People, Marketing, Social Media, Technology, Travel on 22/04/2009 by nicka77

It is now less than 24 hours before I get on a flight to Mumbai, and begin what promises to be the adventure of a lifetime.

After some last minute technical emergencies with the mac, I think I’m finally ready to leave sunny London to embark on an adventure that will take in India, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Tokyo, Singapore, Thailand, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Chile, Peru and Brazil. 

The trip could take anywhere between 3 and 12 months, depending on a variety of factors – but the main aim from my perspective is to get out there, have fun, immerse myself in alien cultures, and have a phenomenal life-changing experience.

But it’s not all about play (although there’ll be plenty) – there is a business angle to this trip as well.

I’ll be meeting a wide variety of people from the world of advertising and marketing, asking for their opinions and perspectives on some of the big questions facing the industry today. It seems like an apt time to be undertaking this type of project, with the twin towers of technological innovation and global recession combining to create an era of unprecedented change.

The blog you are reading now will predominantly be for my personal experiences of the trip, and there will be plenty of photos, videos and anecdotes from my journey. I’ll also be on twitter (@nicka77 or search #worldview), and will be geo-tagging photos and videos on my flickrstream as I go.

The opinion pieces on how the industry is changing will be featured on, and the idea for the #worldview project is to explore the global themes i am focusing on through a plethora of local and regional lenses.

Although Mumbai is the first stop on the world tour, in reality the #worldview project started a couple of weeks ago when I went to New York.

I was able to discuss how advertising and marketing is changing both globally and within America with Bob Greenberg & Chris Colborn at R/GA, Bob Jeffrey at JWT, and Mark Wnek at Lowe. The guys gave me some fantastic insights, and I’ll be talking about the conversations we had over the coming weeks and months, comparing and contrasting their perspectives on the industry with opinions from the countries I’ll be visiting.

Over the last two weeks, I’ve also spoken to a number of people in London to get some great (and varied) perspectives on the shape of the industry, both in the UK and worldwide. Again, i’ll be referencing those discussions in forthcoming posts.

I want to take this opportunity to say a huge thanks to everyone who has found the time to talk to me so far, and who has helped to kick start the project in its embryonic stage. 

Now the project is about to begin for real.

I hope you enjoy the journey as much as I do.