Chidi ACHARA

SVP Global Creative Director | SIMON

Chidi Achara started his career at Grey London and spent many years at BBH where he was fortunate to learn from some of the best creatives in the business. Chidi is now responsible for all advertising, branding, media, digital, social and events for Simon - the world’s largest operator of luxury and fashion shopping centers. Previously, he helped lead the creative reinvention of Cole Haan with the acclaimed “Subway” campaign. He has collaborated with the world’s leading brands including Diesel, Levi’s, Hugo Boss, Dunhill and TAG Heuer.

 

questionnaire

What was your very first job? 

Graduate trainee at Grey London working on Bacardi, Nike and P&G

Please describe, in your own words, what your job is and what work it entails. 

I lead an internal creative agency that executes all advertising and creative marketing for over 200 shopping centers around the world. Our aim is to elevate Simon as a modern, fashion-forward destination and we collaborate with best-in-class creative talent and partners such as Vogue, W, Harper’s Bazaar and Refinery29 to bring our vision to life.

How did you discover that the creative world was right for you? Was there a time in your life that you credit to this discovery? What was there train of events that brought you to where you are today? 

My intro to creativity was via music at a very early age and it continues to be a huge influence. When I was about 13, I began to explore art, photography, film and literature and realized my interests lay in the creative arena. I wasn’t sure how to marry that with a career until a friend introduced me to the ad agency world just as I left college. I started knocking on doors and eventually one opened

In your constantly growing and expanding industry, how do you find inspiration to keep your work fresh, innovative and relevant?

Over the years I’ve been an avid consumer of music, film, design, photography, art, architecture etc. and built up a bank of knowledge that I now draw upon for my work. To stay fresh and relevant, I keep my eyes open to the changing world around us and explore new channels and ways to connect and move people.

If you had to pick one piece of work or project that you are most proud of, more for the creative work and innovation it required, rather than its recognition or industry “success,” what would it be? 

To be honest, creating a new global brand for an esteemed multi-billion dollar company like Simon is something I’m especially proud of. It’s not just about the quality of the work, but also building the team and introducing a new level of creative thinking to a corporate entity that touches all areas of American life.

jury

SVP Global Creative Director | SIMON
Founder, Creative Director | SLANG INC.
Global Design Director | COTY PRESTIGE
Exec. Creative Director | PERIERA & O'DELL
VP Group Creative Director | DIGITASLBI
Chief Strategic Officer | VICE MEDIA
EVP Exec. Creative Director | BBDO
Creative Director | CONDE NAST
Creative Director | HEARST DIGITAL MEDIA
Creative Director | CARHARTT
Creative Director | ARITZIA
Creative Director | REFINERY29
Creative Director | GREY BEAUTY
Chief Engagement Officer | SAMSUNG
Director of Branded Content | MACY'S
VP Group CD | YOUNG & RUBICAM
Dir. of Creative Operations | DROGA5
Assoc. Creative Director | ARNOLD WW
Managing Director, CCO | HAVAS LIFE
ECD, Managing Partner | SID LEE
Exec. Creative Director | MCGARRYBOWEN
VP Brand Design | SYFY
SVP Creative Director | DDB (AVEENO)
Exec. Creative Director | ANTHROPOLOGIE
SVP Global Creative Director | CREME LA MER
Global Digital Creative Director | KIEHL'S
Sr. Dir of Creative Production | NIKE
Exec. Dir., Creative Studio | NARS COSMETCS
SVP Executive Producer | MCCANN
Exec. Creative Director | SELECT WORLD
Chief Creative Officer | THE FADER
VP CD | AUTHENTIC BRANDS GROUP
Exec. Dir. of Production | DAVID YURMAN
CCO | AVRETT FREE GINSBERG
Head of Visual Design | AMAZON
Exec. Creative Director | SPRING STUDIOS
Exec. Creative Director | ARNOLD WW
Chairman | SCHOOL OF VISUAL ARTS
Creative Director | VAYNER MEDIA
Global Head of Design | CITIBANK
Creative Director | TJ MAXX
VP Brand Marketing | CHOBANI
Sr. Manager, Interactive | TIMBERLAND
VP CD | HUDSON'S BAY, LORD&TAYLOR
Sr. Creative Director | UNDER ARMOUR
Chief Creative Officer | JACK MORTON
Creative Director | R/GA
ECD | FALLON NEW YORK
VP Creative Director | PUBLICIS
Exec. Creative Director | JWT
Exec. Creative Director | NICKELODEON
Assoc. Creative Director | R/GA
VP Global Creative | MICHAEL KORS
Head of Brand Design | WARBY PARKER
VP Brand CD | VH1
Creative Director
ECD, Global Product & Innovation | HUGE
VP Creative Marketing | XCEL BRANDS
SVP, Group Creative Director | MOMENTUM
Founder | MEKANISM
Creative Director
VP CD of Experiential Design | EDELMAN
Sr. Art Director | DROGA5
Digital Creative Director | NBCUNIVERSAL
Creative Director | SHOWTIME NETWORKS
Creative Innovation Lead | GOOGLE ZOO
Creative Director | AEROSOLES
Director of Innovation | MEDIACOM
Creative Director | NFL
Chief Creative Officer & Co-Founder | SID LEE
Group Creative Director | MOTHER NEW YORK
VP Global Creative | ESTEE LAUDER / ADF
SVP Brand Creative | KATE SPADE
Chief Creative Officer | CARROT- VICE AGENCY
VP Creative Services | ALICE+OLIVIA
Design Dir., Global Brand Design | CONVERSE
Design Director | 360I
Chief Creative Officer | HUDSON ROUGE
Owner + Artistic Director | EPI
Sr. Art Director | BARON & BARON
Head of Global Creative Design | JO MALONE
Creative Services | HARRY WINSTON
Group CD | THE MARTIN AGENCY
ACD | THE CREATIVE GROUP, CONDE NAST
Dir. of Digital and Print Prod. | KENNETH COLE
Partner | THE PUB
Exec Creative Director | TIFFANY & CO
Creative Director | SHOPBOP
Artistic Director | EQUINOX
Founder, Creative Director | AIR PARIS
ACD | BERGDORF GOODMAN
SVP ECD | LAIRD + PARTNERS
Creative | AMAZON FASHION JAPAN
SVP, Creative Director | ARNOLD WW
Art Director | PAPER
Group Creative Director | RAZORFISH
Photo Director | T MAGAZINE
Creative Director | EXPRESS
Co-Founder, CD | JOHANNES LEONARDO
Creative Director | BARTON F. GRAF
Partner | WALTON ISAACSON
Sr. Social Media Strategist | ADIDAS
VP Creative Director | MCCANN
Chief Production Officer | DDB
Founder | NR2154
Creative Director | APPLE
Chief Creative Officer | SAPIENTRAZORFISH
VP Creative | MAYBELLINE
VP Group CD | MCCANN ERICKSON