Poem co-founder Matt Holmes announces his departure from the agency


Matt Holmes: “I’m now lucky to be able to take a few more months off to focus on my own health, my young family and my Dad in the UK”

Poem co-founder Matt Holmes has announced his departure from the independent creative PR and social agency, which will bring change to its senior leadership.

Holmes, who co-founded the agency with Rob Lowe, will exit the agency this month following a sale of his 50% of the business.

Holmes, who has been on an extended break from his day-to-day role for the past few months while also helping with the management and creative transition, intends to enjoy an opportunity to spend time with his family here and in the UK, before embarking on the next chapter of his working life in 2024.

Lowe said: “Matt and I are extremely proud of what we’ve achieved at Poem over the last eight years. We’ve created an exceptional team of brilliant Poets, done some fantastic work together and forged long-term relationships with some of the country’s biggest marketers and brands. Matt goes with our love, respect and best wishes for the next chapter in his life and career.”

Holmes said of his departure: “I’ve worked at some of the best agencies in the world but will forever be thankful for the phone call I got from Rob eight years ago speculatively asking if I’d be interested in starting something a bit different. Even more so that we stuck our necks out and what we’ve achieved since.

“Not many people can say that. I’m so proud of the calibre of work and how we’ve consistently pushed to show how effective creative PR can be for brands and client marketing budget ROI. More than that though, I’m proud of the calibre of people who have come through the agency and the current team. They are special and it all comes from the genuine values Rob and I set out to achieve about being a ‘more human’ agency.

“I love seeing what the alumni are achieving and what the current team under Rob’s outstanding leadership will do next. I’m a PR and brand nerd and love the industry and the positive impact it can have. That’s not going to change. But after 20 years, I’m now lucky to be able to take a few more months off to focus on my own health, my young family and my Dad in the UK before some exciting new challenges in 2024.”

Katie Raleigh, managing partner, added: “While seeing Matt leave feels incredibly sad, we’ve had some time to plan this with Matt and we’re extremely excited about Poem’s next iteration and will be using this change to shake things up further. Matt is not only a great leader in our industry, but a great friend and I will miss him dearly. Matt’s helped set us up for future success and his influence will be long lasting.”

The departure of Holmes will see Lowe (managing director), Katie Raleigh (managing partner) and Rhania Farah (business director) leading the agency. Jess Cluff, who was recently appointed to creative director, has been leading the creative department for nearly six months to helpmake the transition as smooth as possible.

Poem’s stable of clients include Sony PlayStation, Tourism Australia, Nestle, Amazon, Uber Casrshare, Uber, Canva, Cashrewards, TEDxSydney, Place Management NSW, Impossible Foods and Oporto.

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