FOUNDED IN 2015,
WE CREATE AND DELIVER
INTELLIGENT COMMERCE SOLUTIONS,

ENABLING OUR CUSTOMERS TO SELL AND MARKET MORE EFFECTIVELY.

We are

A global provider

of outsourced sales & marketing solutions
for retailers and consumer goods companies

Global insights.
Local relevance.

Advantage Smollan is the result of a strategic international partnership between Advantage Solutions and Global Smollan Holdings.

Combining local expertise with global scale to deliver effective, innovative solutions for our partners. 

Our global structure enables us to:
Support our customers around the world to create growth opportunities in new and existing markets.
Our global structure enables us to:
Deliver solutions which are high quality, flexible, consistent and transparent within and across markets.
Our global structure enables us to:
Offer innovative global technology solutions.
Our global structure enables us to:
Provide skilled support and implementation teams for global programmes.
Our global structure enables us to:
Leverage our global network for shared learnings, innovation and best practice; future proof our client's businesses.
Our global structure enables us to:
Attract and retain top talent looking to grow in a global business.
Our global structure enables us to:
Acquire and develop businesses that support our customers best in their market.
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Our operating model

Data-driven

Data-driven

Activities are planned and executed with more precision and less waste.

Efficient

Efficient

Established, unified ways of working mean greater efficiencies in how activities can be directed centrally, regionally, or locally.

Technology enabled

Technology enabled

Automated business processes empower teams to perform optimally.

Measurable

Measurable

Impact and results are consistently monitored and measured to drive continuous improvement.

Our Portfolio
of Companies

We recognize the need to provide compelling, tailored and differentiated solutions for our customers in each market – as well as repeatable solutions across markets. We do that by bringing international best practice from all corners of the globe and coupling it with local expertise and engaged teams on the ground.

Meet Our Leadership Team

Leading innovation in retail solutions across Europe.

Laurence Clube
CEO of Advantage Smollan

Laurence worked in a number of sales and marketing roles for Dulux paints, Guinness, and Diageo over a 16 year period, prior to his appointment as a Business Unit Director at Sainsbury’s, one of the big grocery retailers in the United Kingdom. In 2007 he was appointed as MD of REL Field Marketing, and in 2013, after REL was acquired by The Blueprint Group, he took up the role of CEO of The Blueprint Group. Three years later, having sold the REL business to Advantage Smollan, Laurence was appointed as COO of Advantage Smollan responsible for building and managing the business across its European scope. Laurence was appointed CEO of Advantage Smollan at the end of June 2021.

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Rebecca Ahern
Growth Director

Rebecca has worked for the business since 2007 in various customer management roles primarily in the consumer electronics and FMCG sectors, working with both retailers and consumer goods manufacturers. In 2013 Rebecca took up the role of joint MD of REL with Stephen Gordon and three years later, following the Advantage Smollan Acquisition, became Growth Director. Rebecca now leads the growth agenda for Advantage Smollan across Europe and works with counterparts in Advantage Solutions and Smollan to deliver global customer solutions.

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Lucy Vallender
Head of Data Growth & Innovation

Lucy has worked in Sales and Marketing for over 20 years in a range of leadership roles and across a number of sectors. Lucy joined the group in 2013 spending 5 years as Managing Director of Retail Active, and most recently in a group role as Head of Data Growth & Innovation, responsible for the design, creation and pan-European execution of Advantage Smollan’s commercial data strategy.

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Maria Southey
Chief Financial Officer

Maria joined the company in 2018 following tenures in senior finance roles across a variety of sectors from Technology to Media and Financial Services. Most recently as Lead Financial Officer at American Express for Europe, the Middle East and Africa and prior to that as CFO for Europe and the Middle East at Aimia, a Canadian listed data-driven marketing and loyalty analytics company. Maria is a qualified Chartered Accountant (FCA) and is currently responsible for Finance, Technology, IT and Data within the organization.

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Stephen Sowden
Chief Operating Officer, IMA

Stephen has worked within the agency world for 20 years – 17 years of which have been at IMA in Leeds. He worked his way up from Account Exec to owner, and now COO as part of Advantage Smollan.

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Phillip Dimech
Head of Information Technology

Phil has more than 25 years experience in delivering IT solutions both in the United Kingdom and at other international companies including SDL, STERIS, TNS, and the International Hospitals Group. He holds an Honours Degree in Information Systems Engineering from the University of Coventry. In 2013 Phil was appointed as IT Director of REL Field Marketing in the United Kingdom, after which he moved to Advantage Smollan as part of their 2015 acquisition. He was appointed Head of IT in January 2018, responsible for building and managing IT solutions across its European scope.

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Paul Phillips
Chief Executive Officer, FLIXMEDIA

Paul has extensive experience in delivering innovative management strategies and ‘mission critical’ financial and operational programmes in complex and rapidly changing environments. He is proud to lead a talented team turning browsers into buyers.

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Stephen Gordon
People Director

Stephen’s career started in Grocery Retail with Safeway. Since then he’s continued to work in retail across multiple brands and retailers. In 2007, Stephen joined REL and was promoted to Managing Director in 2013 where he focused on an engagement strategy and people development programmes across the business. His passion for cultural engagement, the power of people and commitment to sustainability has led him to become the People Director for Advantage Smollan.

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Martin Kolář
Head of Region, Czech Republic, Slovakia & Poland (CEE), 4P&P

Martin’s career began in logistics responsible for Nedlloyd Czechoslovakia. In 2002 he joined 4P&P to manage their operational and tactical business with existing customers, gradually expanding their portfolio in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. In 2019, he was appointed as Head of Region CEE responsible for building and managing the operational business across the region.

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Laurence Clube

Chief Operating Officer
Laurence worked in a number of sales and marketing roles for Dulux paints, Guinness, and Diageo over a 16year period, prior to his appointment as a Business Unit Director at Sainsbury’s, one of the big grocery retailers in the United Kingdom. In 2007 he was appointed as MD of REL Field Marketing, and in 2013 took up the role of CEO of The Blueprint Group (part of REL). Three years later, having sold the REL business to Advantage Smollan, Laurence was appointed as COO of Advantage Smollan responsible for building and managing the business across its European scope.

Rebecca Ahern

Growth Director
Rebecca has worked for the business since 2007 in various customer management roles primarily in the consumer electronics and FMCG sectors, working with both retailers and consumer goods manufacturers. In 2013 Rebecca took up the role of joint MD of REL with Stephen Gordon and three years later, following the Advantage Smollan Acquisition, became Growth Director. Rebecca now leads the growth agenda for Advantage Smollan across Europe and works with counterparts in Advantage Solutions and Smollan to deliver global customer solutions.

Lucy Vallender

Head of Data Growth & Innovation
Lucy has worked in Sales and Marketing for over 20 years in a range of leadership roles and across a number of sectors. Lucy joined the group in 2013 spending 5 years as Managing Director of Retail Active, and most recently in a group role as Head of Data Growth & Innovation, responsible for the design, creation and pan-European execution of Advantage Smollan’s commercial data strategy.

Maria Southey

Chief Financial Officer
Maria joined the company in 2018 following tenures in senior finance roles across a variety of sectors from Technology to Media and Financial Services. Most recently as Lead Financial Officer at American Express for Europe, the Middle East and Africa and prior to that as CFO for Europe and the Middle East at Aimia, a Canadian listed data-driven marketing and loyalty analytics company. Maria is a qualified Chartered Accountant (FCA) and is currently responsible for Finance, Technology, IT and Data within the organization.

John Hubner

Head of Human Resource Operations
John was initially appointed in 2020 as Head of Advantage Smollan Talent responsible for Talent Management across the organisation, moving into his current role as Head of Human Resource Operations for the Advantage Smollan Group a short while later. He started his career at Sainsbury’s responsible for several retail management roles before moving into Human Resources. His role changed and broadened over time, the last being Head of HR for the Buying and Product Development function. His journey subsequently led him to work for an Employee Benefits Sales and Consultancy organisation as Group HR Director, before joining REL as Group HR Director in 2013.

Stephen Sowden

Chief Operating Officer, IMA
Stephen has worked within the agency world for 20 years – 17 years of which have been at IMA in Leeds. He worked his way up from Account Exec to owner, and now COO as part of Advantage Smollan.

Phillip Dimech

Head of Information Technology
Phil has more than 25years experience in delivering IT solutions both in the United Kingdom and at other international companies including SDL, STERIS, TNS, and the International Hospitals Group. He holds an Honours Degree in Information Systems Engineering from the University of Coventry. In 2013 Phil was appointed as IT Director of REL Field Marketing in the United Kingdom, after which he moved to Advantage Smollan as part of their 2015 acquisition. He was appointed Head of IT in January 2018, responsible for building and managing IT solutions across its European scope.

Paul Phillips

Chief Executive Officer, FLIXMEDIA
Paul has extensive experience in delivering innovative management strategies and ‘mission critical’ financial and operational programmes in complex and rapidly changing environment. He is proud to lead a talented team turning browsers into buyers.

Jurgen Leybaert

Chief Executive Officer, HAMILTON BRIGHT
Jurgen began his career as an Account Manager in retail before moving into the world of Field Marketing with Hamilton Bright Belgium. Jurgen started as a project manager in Consumer Electronics, working his way up over a few years to Country Manager of Hamilton Bright Belgium, before taking on the CEO role of all of Hamilton Bright in January 2020.

Stephen Gordon

People Director
Stephen’s career started in Grocery Retail with Safeway. Since then he’s continued to work in retail across multiple brands and retailers. In 2007, Stephen joined REL and was promoted to Managing Director in 2013 where he focused on an engagement strategyand people development programmesacross the business. His passion for cultural engagement, the power of people and commitment to sustainabilityhas led him to become the People Director for Advantage Smollan.

Martin Kolář

Head of Region, Czech Republic, Slovakia & Poland (CEE), 4P&P
Martin’s career began in logistics responsible for Nedlloyd Czechoslovakia. In 2002 he joined 4P&P to manage their operational and tactical business with existing customers, gradually expanding their portfolio in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. In 2019, he was appointed as Head of Region CEE responsible for building and managing the operational business across the region.
MästerGasellenDagensIndustri
One of Sweden’s fastest growing
2019
FMBE Awards
Agency of the year
2020
Ranked 4th
Prolific North Top 50 Integrated Agencies
2021
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Contact us TO FIND OUT HOW WE CAN
BRING GLOBAL INSIGHTS TO YOUR BUSINESS.