Cheerful Twentyfirst hire senior team of folded agency Unicorn Events

Brand experience company brings in three of the team from Unicorn, which closed for business amid the coronavirus crisis.

(L-R) Clowes, Luffman and Cadarso
(L-R) Clowes, Luffman and Cadarso

Hannah Luffman, former managing director at Unicorn Events, has joined brand experience agency Cheerful Twentyfirst as strategy director, alongside two of the senior Unicorn Events team.

Unicorn Events closed for business in March as a result of the coronavirus crisis.

Luffman brings with her Manuela Cadarso and Elena Clowes as project director and creative producer respectively.

Cadarso, one of 35 outstanding event professionals under 35 years old in C&IT’s A-List 2020, will focus on commercial relationships and sustainable best practices in her new role.

Clowes – also a former C&IT A-lister – will lead on creative projects and communications strategy, focusing on audience engagement in virtual and hybrid environments, alongside creative director Simon Baird. 

The move to bring the former leadership team from Unicorn to Cheerful Twentyfirst is part of the agency's plan to meet communication and event engagement requirements in the post-COVID-19 landscape.

Luffman said: “It was expected that I would take some time to evaluate the next steps and while there are many incredible agencies in the UK I knew I wanted to join Cheerful Twentyfirst very shortly after meeting with them. 

“They care about clients and projects with the same passion and honest approach to business that we always did at Unicorn. On top of that they have the digital experience and stability to take what we created forward in a secure but exciting step for our clients and partners.”

Cheerful Twentyfirst CEO, Steve Quah, added: “To have three of the senior team from Unicorn Events join us is a very exciting step in our continued agency development."

Cheerful Twentyfirst and Unicorn Events have also reached an agreement on the use of Unicorn IP assets and protected Unicorn clients with the same procedures and commitments.

Hiring during tricky times

On why now is a good time to hire, Quah added: "The industry is at a critical point of change, not just in response to COVID-19 directly but in having the time to reset global strategy and focus. 

"Our decision to hire now is in response to where we see the future of events and experiences. By making these strategic hires we are able to further strengthen our offering as an integrated agency.

In the immediate-term, we are exploring how events and experiences might look post-coronavirus. We're looking at how to facilitate audience needs in the 'new normal', and will be sharing these insights with our industry peers.

"In the long term, our new hires offer an additional layer of strategic brand experience support to our clients."

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