Our experience spans the globe from China to London to the Coolest Little Capital in the World.
Our award winning team has helped kiwi kids thrive through learning about Life Education, promote award winning New Zealand products and services on the global stage; and influence positive regulatory change and outcomes on a range of issues.
We’ll put you front and centre because what matters to you matters to us.
Meet the team
BSc Biochemistry, NZ Diploma in Public Relations
Johanna (Jo) has some 20 years experience in senior public relations and communications roles including Press Secretary for the former Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister the Rt Hon Don McKinnon. She managed the public relations for McKinnon’s campaign to become Commonwealth Secretary-General in 1999, media relations during the historic ‘Special Meeting on East Timor’ when New Zealand hosted APEC in Auckland during September 1999, and also throughout New Zealand’s involvement in the Bougainville Peace Process. She started her career at New Zealand Aluminium Smelters Ltd and has held Senior communications and marketing roles for a number of major corporates – the New Zealand Tourism Board, The National Bank of New Zealand Limited and AMP/Ergo.
In 2004 Jo launched her consultancy Coughlan Communications with a client list that included a range of public and private sector organisations, including the Office of the Commonwealth Secretary General, New Zealand Post, EECA, Ministry of Education, AJ Park and the high profile NZFlag.com Trust. In 2008, Jo co-founded Silvereye Communications and has subsequently worked with a wide range of public and private sector clients across diverse industries. In 2009 Silvereye was a finalist in the Best New Business category of the Her Business Awards Wellington Region and in 2018 a finalist in the Wellington Export Awards for service to exporters. In 2016 Jo was a finalist in the New Zealand Westpac Women in Business Awards.
Jo has held senior governance roles having served nine years as a Wellington City Councillor – six of those as Chair of the Economic portfolio. She was Chairperson of Wellington City Life Education Trust, a Board member of Positively Wellington Tourism and a National Board member and Deputy Chair of Life Education Trust New Zealand. In 2018 she joined the Board of the New Zealand Amateur Sports Association and was appointed an Independent Director of Dairy NZ Ltd.
Meet the team
Conor has broad experience in government and parliamentary relations, policy, agriculture, exporting, investment, technology and smart cities. He has represented farmers, New Zealand and his business at regional, national and international levels, dealing with Governors, Prime Ministers and Presidents. He has been an international negotiator and been involved in international forums such as at the United Nations and given speeches in several countries.
After 6 years as CEO of Federated Farmers of New Zealand, Conor set up his own exporting company Agribusiness New Zealand Ltd. The company focuses on exports and trading, farms systems and technology, and investment. It exports dairy, meat, fish, fruit products as well as live cattle and genetics. It is also involved in farm systems and supply chains, as well as smart city technologies. And it matches investors and assets. It has been involved in countries such as China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Rwanda, USA, UAE, Australia, Brazil, amongst others.
Conor is very solutions focused and brings a mix of strategy, practicality and pragmatism to any project or issue. He is an outside-the-box thinker and believes that asking ‘dumb’ questions is vital. He has an ability to communicate at all levels and to get things done.
Having lived in Wellington for 25 years, working in and around government and the public sector in various forms, Conor understands ‘how Wellington works’. He is a regular column writer and commentator.
- Cannasouth Plant Research NZ Ltd – Director – a New Zealand based Bio-pharmaceutical dedicated to world-class medical cannabinoid research and development. https://cannasouth.co.nz/
- Agribusiness New Zealand Ltd – Chairman – involved in exporting, farms systems, technology and investment. agribusinessnz.co.nz
- GMP Pharmaceuticals Ltd – Director – a manufacturer with over 1000 staff at operations in New Zealand, Australia and Asia, turning over around $250 million. http://gmp.com.au/
- New Zealand E-Sports Foundation – Director – governing body for E-Sports in New Zealand. http://www.esf.nz/
Some former roles:
- Reserve Bank of New Zealand – Independent Advisor – one of only two advisors to the Bank to ensure inflation targets are met and financial stability is maintained for the New Zealand economy. https://www.rbnz.govt.nz/about-us/monetary-policy-external-advisers
- Federated Farmers of New Zealand – Chief Executive Officer – representative body of New Zealand’s farmers and rural sector.
- The Property Group Ltd – Commercial Director/ Deputy CEO – fast growing property consultancy with over 100 staff operating in the infrastructure and property sectors.
- New Zealand Property Institute – Chief Executive Officer – professional body for property professionals including registered valuers.
- Press Secretary and Private secretary to number four Minister in the New Zealand government cabinet.
- Mobil Oil, Medic Aid, National Bank, Farmer, shearer.
Meet the team
Originally from France, Sylvie is fluent in several languages, including French and Spanish. During her years in the UK and France, Sylvie worked for a number of New Media agencies in account management and marketing roles before returning to New Zealand to start and run her own family business.
Sylvie has strong marketing, stakeholder relations, communications and social media experience, and was managing New Zealand Chinese Language Week 2017 for Silvereye Communications. Sylvie holds a Bachelor in Commerce and Administration (BCS Hons.) in Marketing and a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Political Science, both from Victoria University in Wellington.
Meet the team
Mike has over 20 years senior experience in government communications and New Zealand journalism. Most recently the Chief Advisor, Strategic Communications in the Office of the Prime Minister, Mike served as Chief Press Secretary to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. Prior to this Mike was Chief Press Secretary in the Office of the Leader of the Opposition following five years managing media and public relations for New Zealander Rugby and two years with Rugby New Zealand 2011 as the Communications Manager in the organisation of the seventh Rugby World Cup.
An award-winning television journalist, Mike was a senior political and business reporter at TVNZ for 11 years. Earning a reputation for fairness and accuracy, Mike has received two Qantas Media Awards, twice won the Westpac Financial Journalism Award and has been Real Estate Institute of New Zealand Property Reporter of the Year.
Mike received two Asia NZ media scholarships to cover political and economic events in Japan and Indonesia, and specialises in reputation and crisis management and media training.
Mike holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Economics and a Diploma in Journalism from the University of Canterbury.
Casey Danwen Zhang
Meet the team
Casey Danwen Zhang
Originally from China, Casey is fluent in Cantonese, Mandarin and English. She is mainly responsible for our social media campaigns, collating and analysing data and metrics, and supporting senior consultants with content writing and editing. Casey plays a key role in our work with the Bank of China (New Zealand) Limited and New Zealand Chinese Language Week, helping to provide social media support and marketing and communications assistance. Casey graduated from Unitec institute of Technology in Auckland with a Bachelor of Business in Marketing.
Meet the team
Alex is a recent arrival to Wellington, having grown up in Melbourne, Australia. Alex is predominantly responsible for executing client campaigns, co-ordinating Silvereye’s digital marketing plan and supporting senior consultants to develop websites, create graphics, video and essential copy. Alex plays a key role in co-ordinating New Zealand Chinese Language Week.
With a background in marketing and communications, Alex has worked in fashion, travel, recruitment and as a freelance copywriter. She has travelled extensively, twice studying abroad in France and volunteering with NGOs in Cambodia and Bolivia.
Alex holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Marketing) and a Bachelor of International Studies (International Relations) with distinction from Deakin University Australia. She is also a Trustee on the Board of the Young and Hungry Arts Trust in Wellington.
Meet the team
Libby is currently based in Beijing as Silvereye’s China Correspondent. She worked in London for Albany Investment, an international investment company, and Peter and Porter, a high-end shoe manufacturer, and has travelled extensively throughout China. Libby attended the Global Ag-Investing Conference in New York as a Marketing Assistant with Agribusiness NZ Limited.
As a digital native Libby has an excellent working knowledge of social media, digital marketing and design across all platforms. She has worked on a range of campaigns and has demonstrated an exceptional ability to turn a client brief into an engaging and successful social media campaign. Libby is our content creation guru and a key digital marketing consultant.
She has a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and Religion at Victoria University and is currently studying Mandarin at Peking University on a Confucius Institute Scholarship.