Pedestrian Group has announced the appointment of the team that will drive Refinery29 as it launches in Australia and New Zealand.
The team of five will be led by head of editorial Zahra Campbell-Avenell, who was most recently the
head of publishing and editorial at Finder.
Reporting directly to Pedestrian Group publisher Vanessa Lawrence, Campbell-Avenell will be
responsible for the highly-anticipated site’s voice, mission and strategy across all platforms
when it launches in late July.
Refinery29 Australia will officially launch on 28 July, with a 300-person launch event for key
agencies, clients and women of influence to be held in Sydney. Confirmed commercial launch partners include Uber, Adidas and Stan.
Campbell-Avenell will be joined by Kate McGregor as managing editor (formerly managing
editor of POPSUGAR Australia), Alicia Vrajlal as culture editor (formerly editor of HuffPost
Australia), Pema Bakshi as style and living editor (formerly digital content editor at Vogue
Australia, Vogue Living and GQ Australia), and Maggie Zhou as writer and producer (formerly
editorial assistant at Fashion Journal).
Campbell-Avenell said: “Refinery29 is all about elevating and making space for women’s
voices, and there’s no platform in Australia that comes close – therein lies our big opportunity.
“There couldn’t be a more crucial time for Aussie women to both hear and tell their own stories,
and I can’t wait to create a home for conversations that reflect important lived experiences on
Refinery29 Australia. To lead a brand I’ve loved for over a decade is a true honour.”
Lawrence said: “One of Zahra’s biggest strengths is the fact she hasn’t worked in traditional women’s media; what we’re striving to build is something Australia hasn’t seen before, so who better to lead it than someone who can identify the white space?
“She has an intimate understanding of Refinery29 Australia’s opportunity to be a vehicle for fresh perspectives on long-overdue cultural conversations, and her wealth of knowledge in SEO and affiliate is just the icing on the cake.
“In Zahra, Kate, Alicia, Pema and Maggie, we’ve assembled a dream team of talented women whose strengths not only complement each other in the best possible way but who are truly passionate about delivering on Refinery29’s brand mission to platform underrepresented voices and issues affecting Aussie women+.”
Simone Oliver, global editor-in-chief of Refinery29, said: “With this launch, we not only
have an incredible opportunity to extend the R29 platform, but the privilege of creating content
that reflects the varied experiences and intersectionality of Australian women+ today.
“I’m thrilled to see such a powerhouse team come together for R29 Australia.”
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