Ogilvy sustainability head Andy Wilson launches new venture to scale up sustainability ideas

The Singapore-based communications strategist has launched Early Majority, a company that aims to speed up the adoption of sustainability solutions that have struggled to achieve scale.

Andy Wilson speaking at The Conscious Festival 2023
Ogilvy's head of sustainability Andy Wilson speaking at The Conscious Festival. Wilson pointed to research that finds that 63 per cent of consumers globally believe that business leaders are purposefully trying to mislead them. Image: Robin Hicks / Eco-Business

Singapore-based head of sustainability for Ogilvy Asia Andy Wilson has left the advertising agency to start his own venture, which aims to help amplify brands in the sustainability sector. It is launching with projects related to alternative protein and healthy aging.

The Briton, who joined Ogilvy from rival ad agency BBDO in 2021 to launch the former’s sustainability practice, moves on at a time when advertising agencies are increasingly being scrutinised for promoting major polluters

Wilson’s role at Ogilvy was focused on helping clients shape their sustainability priorities and solutions in Asia. Previously at BBDO, he was Asia head of strategy, and had worked with brands including oil major ExxonMobil, consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble and dairy firm Fonterra. 

His new company, called Early Majority, is focused on “accelerating the adoption of good ideas, technologies and brands,” Wilson explained in a press release.

“My prevailing insight from the last four years that I have been involved in sustainability is that so much of the “solution set” gets stuck in early adopter mode – the intention/action gap,” he said, pointing to concepts such as plant-based meat, second-hand fashion, and recycling, which have struggled to achieve scale.

“The sooner that good ideas, technologies and brands can cross the chasm from early adopter to early majority, the quicker we will reach positive tipping points,” he said.

Wilson recently called for companies in Asia to follow stricter European rules that are introduced to tackle greenwashing and not “hide behind” their own jurisdiction’s legislation that may be lacking, at sustainable lifestyle event The Conscious Festival in Singapore. He has also increasingly been vocal about how advertising agencies and storytellers should not be working for polluters.


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