Thrive PR grows with new Kiwi recruits Victoria Fruean and Natasha D’Souza


Independent agency Thrive PR + Communications has grown its team with the appointment of Victoria Fruean as Group Account Director and Natasha D’Souza as Senior Account Manager.


Victoria was most recently PR & Marketing Manager at media agency PHD. With more than 10 years experience in communications, she has held senior roles with Spark (now Drum) and Mango. Victoria has worked across sectors including telco, FMCG, automotive, food and beverage and sport on brands including Spark NZ, Mercedes-Benz, 2degrees, DB Breweries, Unilever and international tennis tournament ASB Classic. Victoria will join Thrive Sydney, managing a portfolio of Australasian clients and playing a role with ANZ Group.


Natasha joins Thrive Auckland as the New Zealand office continues to strengthen its local service offering. Natasha most recently worked at Y&R (now VMLY&R) on clients such as Campari, Goodman Fielder,  Jaguar and Edgewell. Prior to Y&R, Natasha spent three years with Mango.


Thrive was founded in Melbourne in 2000 by Wellington born, Leilani Abels. It now operates across New Zealand and Australia with offices in Auckland, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and the Gold Coast, as well as a specialised team working into the wider APAC region.


Leilani Abels, Founder and Managing Director of Thrive, said: “New Zealand is a key focus for our agency and our operations here play a big role for us relative to our “corp-sumer” work in the region. Thrive Auckland is growing because we offer both B2B and B2C corporate and consumer comms and there are three key ways we work with clients. Firstly, we have a team who intimately know the local market and are servicing Kiwi businesses focused on their growth nationally.


“We are also helping Kiwi based brands who use our Auckland operations as a gateway to launch and grow in Australia and throughout the APAC region. Thirdly, we are servicing Australasian clients, like Cisco, who want to use the one agency for their comms across New Zealand and Australia.


“I’m delighted to welcome both Victoria and Natasha to our business. Victoria will be based in Sydney, yet we work as “one team” across all our offices so no doubt her local NZ experience will help our agency’s growth here. And Natasha is indicative of what we look for in a high-performance Thriver - smart, hard working, with a positive attitude and an understanding of how to create great stories and content for clients.”


Thrive’s New Zealand client portfolio includes Lion, Spotlight, Cisco, Flamingo and Twitter amongst other local and global brands. Thrive Auckland works across verticals including tech, travel and tourism, property, and food/drink and hospitality.


Natasha D’Souza said: “I’m thrilled to be joining Thrive Auckland and working with a five-office team who truly collaborate, with distance no object. Thrive is renowned in the Australian market and I’ve been watching them steadily build a presence in NZ over the past couple of years. It’s an exciting opportunity to join at a time when the agency is poised for further growth both locally and throughout the region.”


Victoria Fruean said: “Thrive is an exciting step in my career as I take the leap across to Sydney, getting the chance to work on some incredible clients and with some amazing people within the agency. I look forward to maintaining my links to NZ, whilst gaining experience in a new market.”


Thrive is an  independent PR and digital agency with staff across five offices in New Zealand and Australia. Thrive’s clients include ANZ Group, Air New Zealand, Optus, Cisco, Spotlight Group, Indeed, Twitter, Porter Davis, Triumph, Expedia Group, OPSM, Github, Nintendo and many more.

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