Arrivals & Departures: Coke taps Neil Waka

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Coca-Cola (NZ) Amatil has appointed former television frontman Neil Waka to lead its communications team as corporate affairs manager.

He will advise on media relations, strategic policies and initiatives, government and stakeholder relations. He will also develop communications strategies to support Coca-Cola Christmas in the Park and Pride Parade.

Waka comes to Coca-Cola with experience in all forms of media having spent more than 25 years’ in high profile roles with various news outlets including TV3 (Mediaworks) and TVNZ’s One News. He also spent more than five years as corporate affairs manager of General Motors Holden.

Coca-Cola’s GM of strategy & brand Wendy Rayner says she is thrilled. “Neil’s appointment is an exciting one us; there would be few people that have his front line media experience along with his corporate affairs expertise and we are looking forward to sharing our stories with Kiwis everywhere.”

Neil Waka said he is looking forward to building on the success the company has already achieved and has been pleasantly surprised by the culture.

“I have had several weeks in the business already and have seen that this is a Kiwi company who really do put their people first. I am overwhelmed by the level of positivity, dynamism and passion that exists here, and I wouldn’t be surprised if there were few other New Zealand companies with this kind of culture.”

“I am very much looking forward to our future as an organisation, not only for our 1000 or so Kiwi employees around the country but also for some exciting initiatives that we will be rolling out in the coming months.”

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