Tourism Fiji has today announced the appointment of experienced tourism marketing senior executive, Brent Hill as Chief Executive Officer. Hill, who most recently was the Executive Director of Marketing for the South Australian Tourism Commission, brings over 16 years of experience in tourism and digital marketing, advertising, branding, communications, campaign, and executive strategy to Fiji’s National Tourism Office. He replaces former CEO Matt Stoeckel, whose tenure ended in December 2020.
Commenting on Hill’s appointment, Tourism Fiji Chairman Andre Viljoen said, “We’re delighted to welcome someone of Brent’s calibre to this critically important role not just for Fijian tourism, but for the Fijian economy. Brent shone through in the extremely rigorous recruitment process initiated and conducted by the Board with PwC’s assistance, for a CEO to lead Tourism Fiji in these unprecedented times, where international tourism activity has been zero for over a year now. His proven expertise, experience and ideas for the industry’s revival are a perfect fit for Fiji’s current requirements.
Viljoen added, “When border restrictions ease and travel resumes, Fiji will need dynamism and creativity in marketing itself as an attractive, aspirational and safe destination. We are in the same situation as every other leisure tourism destination in the world. All of us are going for the same markets, which are now smaller with lower discretionary spending ability. Brent is highly regarded in the industry given his many accomplishments, and we will need his wide range of existing relationships and management skills with key global trade partners to market our destination, and his excellent communications skills to rally our industry and stakeholders to a common purpose. His immediate focus will be to work with the Board and Fiji’s extremely competent health authorities to restore tourism activity.”
Fijian Minister for Tourism, the Honourable Faiyaz Koya also welcomed Brent Hill’s appointment as Tourism Fiji’s CEO, stating, “Restoring tourism activity will not only restore jobs for hundreds of thousands of Fijians, it will also significantly contribute to the revival of the economy through the industry’s multiplier effect. We are turning the corner now with the rollout of our national vaccination programme in anticipation of market re-entry beyond our traditional markets. This sets the scene for Hill and Tourism Fiji to position Fiji as the ideal destination for not only our Aussie and Kiwi friends but for those that are ready to travel. We will also look to him to pair our globally renowned values of true Fijian hospitality, friendliness and authenticity to the demands and expectations of the modern-day traveller. With Hill at the helm of Tourism Fiji, we are a step closer to strategically positioning Fiji in the global market again.”
In his immediate past role as Executive Director of Marketing for the South Australian Tourism Commission, Hill was credited for growing total tourism expenditure in the region from A$5.3B to A$8.1B in a four-year period (a 53 per cent increase). He also led South Australian tourism’s recovery following the devastating bushfires in the state by developing successful campaigns to re-generate industry business. He was also responsible for an A$30M annual marketing budget and 55 staff across the world to market South Australia.
Hill has a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Marketing and Accounting from the University of Adelaide, is a Certified Practising Marketer (FAMI) and a Patron of the Australian Marketing Institute. He has multiple awards for marketing campaigns over the years, and between 2018 – 2020, has ranked in the top 25 of CMO Magazine’s Top 50 Marketers in Australia.
He is a patron of the South Australian Marketing Institute, a Board Member of the Adelaide Thunderbirds netball organisation, ATDW, Goldilocks smartsuits, and Ripple Effect.
The Minister for Tourism, Board and Management of Tourism Fiji, take this opportunity to thank the Acting CEO, Robert Thompson. Thompson has been a remarkable support, to both the industry and Government, having led the organisation during this difficult time.