Partner & Chairman
Asia Pacific’s leading public relations and communications leader. 25 year career in public relations: roles included Chairman of Burson-Marsteller, the then biggest PR group in Asia Pacific, co-founder of Savage & Horrigan – one of Australia’s top three leading financial PR firms – and founder and CEO of Ogilvy PR Australia, which became the largest PR group in Australia’s PR history.
His public relations career has seen him consult leaders in all aspects of communications, from managing the (at that time) biggest product launch in the history of marketing (Windows 95), to complex issues management, leadership reputation management, and product recalls. His deep technical expertise is in financial and investor communications. Chris has led financial communications on many major financial transactions over his long career, from the Campbell Soup Company take-over of Arnott’s Biscuits, to the Virgin Blue IPO, to a host of takeovers in a range of industries.
Chris was Chief Operating Officer between 2008 and 2015 of ASX-listed STW (Australasia’s leading communications group- now WPP AUNZ: market cap circa $800m). He led the group’s digital growth strategy (digital revenues exceeded $200 million annually), Asian expansion and was directly responsible for all non-advertising and media companies, accounting for more than half of its $500m revenues. Chris also led the growth of STW’s market leading PR, financial relations and public affairs suite of services, with direct responsibility for Cannings, CanningsPurple, Hawker Britton, Barton Deakin, Ogilvy PR (Howorth, Pulse, Parker, Impact).
Today, Chris is the founder of The Savage Company, which specialises in helping leaders and businesses accelerate growth. He is chairman of The 6AM Agency, as well as several other specialist communications firms. Chris is a Fellow of the Public Relations Institute of Australia, an internationally renowned keynote motivational speaker, has a weekly blog – Wrestling Possums- read by 11,000 readers, and has authored via Amazon a collection of his writings under the title Savage Oxygen. Chris has a Bachelor of Arts (Journalism) from Hartley College, Adelaide.