Our focus has always been on simplicity. Unraveling the complexity of business and bringing simple ideas and innovative thinking to brands. Then creating the remarkability they need to grow, build market share, or disrupt the status quo.

Who we are

DIA was established in London in 1983 and became a top five branding consultancy by the end of the 80’s. We opened in Asia in 1996 and today DIA is an independent group based in Singapore with studios in Malaysia, Australia and Indonesia.

We are a group of remarkable strategic, creative and business minds. Our culture is built around ideas. Inspiring, sparking and fostering creative thinking that results in effective business change.

Leaders  |  Team

Nigel Smith
Group CEO
Sutapa Bhattacharya
Managing Director, Malaysia
Pooja Grover
Managing Director, Singapore

Change for the better

 

Nigel was a founding member of DIA in the UK and has over twenty years experience of
working in Asia across everything from consumer to industrial, retail and destination brands.
He is a strong advocate of design and has been advisor to many leading companies and
institutions across the region, as well as President of Design Business Chamber Singapore
(formerly DAS), advisor to the Singapore Design Awards (SDA) and Singapore Design
Class.

 

He is an artist, a former gallery and restaurant owner, a sailor, committed food lover and
divides his time between Singapore and Australia.

close-bio

Purpose-driven Strategy

 

Pooja’s passion for branding is driven by a love for people and how her work can impact
their lives in big or small ways. She has nearly 20 years of work experience in Asia. Her rich
experience in sales, marketing and branding has been achieved by working with a vast
spectrum of global and local clients alike.

 

Pooja is a certified PMC (Practising Management Consultant, recognised by Enterprise
Singapore and SBACC. She is also a recognised lead consultant on Design Thinking
projects, recognised by Design Singapore. When away from work, she loves travelling,
spending time with her children and supports all causes associated with underprivileged
children and animal welfare.

close-bio

Sutapa is an award-winning Brand Specialist, and marketing and communication veteran.
She has more than 25 years of experience in marketing research, media, strategic
communication, advertising, and branding across Asia for local, multinational, and regional
clients – TATA Steel, BAT, Petronas, Maybank, P&G, McDonald’s, Taylors, ISKL, Maxis,
AIA, and Sunway among many others.

 

She has worked on both sides of the table – consultant and business. Her single-minded
focus is to develop strong branding strategies based on business goals and/or problems,
that lead to effective and impactful branding and communication solutions and the building of
meaningful relationships with stakeholders. Because brand strategy and business strategy
work hand in hand to meet business objectives.

 

This purpose has led to the accumulation of multiple industry awards – Effies, Appies,
Dragons, A&M, Campaign Asia – Planner for SE Asia, etc.

 

Her previous stints include Nielsen, JWT, Grey, Leo Burnett, and Tenaga Nasional. At Leo
Burnett, she began the Brand Consulting division which consecutively won the A&M Gold
award for 3 years.

 

Sutapa’s ambition is to make a difference to brands, business and people.

 

As part of her mission to enhance the stature of Branding and Marketing, she conducts
regular Brand Planning workshops for the marketing industry and is an adjunct professor
with noted universities.

close-bio
John Dorai
Executive Creative Director
Yee Kiang
Design Director
Richard Chin
Design Director

John, currently the Creative Director at DIA Brands, is an art-based copywriter with over 25
years of experience in the advertising industry. He began his career very early at local
agencies, and made the transition to international networks with tours as a Senior Writer,
Creative Group Head, Creative Director, Executive Creative Director and most recently,
Head of Creative at Entropia – part of Accenture Song, respectively.

 

John has worked on a wide variety of brands and has been awarded at local, regional and
international award shows, including several Kancil Awards, Silver and Bronze Effies and
DDB’s first Regional Pinnacle Award. Other accolades include Gold, Silver, and Bronze
Adfest Awards, Silver and Bronze Cannes Lions as well as D&AD and New York Festival
honours. John is also invited annually to be a jury member at the Kancil Awards and is a
senior representative in the Kancil Awards Creative Council.

 

In 2017, John and his teams succeeded in elevating Hakuhodo Malaysia to the No. 5
position at the Malaysia’s Kancil Awards (previously unranked in the industry). This was
followed by the agency being awarded Malaysia’s Agency of the Year in 2018 – an historic
and remarkable achievement for Hakuhodo Malaysia.

 

John’s extensive experience in the ever-evolving creative arena coupled with intuitive
management skills allow him to constantly develop a new breed of award-winning talent.
This is further strengthened with exceptional creative insights across all mediums along with
strategic thinking for all brand partners.

close-bio

YK began his career in Naga DDB as a graphic designer after graduating with a BA (Arts) in
Multimedia (Distinction) from RMIT University, Melbourne. He has handled key accounts
from Coke, DiGi, Proton, Panasonic, KFC, Nestle, Carlsberg, Hong Leong Bank and
Tourism Malaysia, just to name a few. Over the years, he has won numerous creative
accolades. At the Malaysian Kancil Awards, including Young Creative of The Year in 2003.

 

He was also accepted into Clio Future Gold 2006 and ranked No.5 in Campaign Brief Asia
2006. Other creative accolades include international awards such as the first D&AD Yellow
Pencil awarded to Malaysia, as well as Cannes Lions, One Show, Clio International, Young
Guns, AWARD Australia, London International, Asian Media Awards, AdFest Asia and
AdStars Korea. When he’s not working, he likes to work out. Because when there is no
concept, there better be biceps.

 

Some of the accounts he has worked on include, Nestle, Diageo, Kimberley Clark, Perodua,
Jordan, Sharp, Hong Leong Bank, Mach by HLB, GemFive, Munchy’s, Dijaya (Tropicana),
Wyeth, Astro Kids, Proton, Coca Cola, Nespray,KFC, Al Rajhi Bank, Carlsberg, Mamee,
Bata, Stabilo, Neutrogena, Ministry Of Health, Hard Rock Cafe & Planet Hollywood, Kotra,
Uob Bank, High 5 Bread, Nippon Paint, Johnsons & Johnsons, Digi, Panasonic, F.A.C.T
(Fashion Academy Of Creative Technology), and more.

close-bio

A multi-disciplinary creative encompasses design, graphics and identity, products and packaging, advertising and communications, installations, digital and retail experiences, sound and motion, bringing knowledge of creative solutions and brand management for local and global brands.

 

A self-taught individual driven by the love, passion and curiosity towards a wide range of creativity and with an in-depth knowledge built over the years within the advertising – design industry. A strong advocate that expresses appreciation towards ideas, copy-writing, an eye for finer details, functionality, practicality, simplicity, experimentations, innovations and fair share of marketing.

 

My work in the industry has been recognised in prestigious accolades such as D&AD, Cannes Lion, One Show, Communication Arts, Spikes Asia, Adfest, ANDY Awards and local shows. Not all reward comes from shows. The acceptance of Awani Jam packaging design and concept was well received by UK high-end retailers such as Selfridges & Co., Harvey Nichols and consumers are incomparable and irreplaceable. Or a logo that captured the essence of a country to represent a worldwide forum. Or a design system that has the ability to control chaos. Breaking barriers through a thinking process for brands and consumers are equally important and a rewarding distinction

 

With years of experience in the industry it has taught me to be an inspiring leader with a people-first culture, keen judgement, integrity, resourcefulness and a strong believer of internal development. Currently refocusing design thinking and principles to create relationships. Foster a culture of collaborations and innovation – experiences, knowledge and passion as the main drive to contribute for solutions, values and growths.

close-bio
Raudha Azman
Account Director
Loges Manivannan
Account Manager

“Creativity is piercing the mundane to find the marvellous.”

Bahiyah Khalid
Senior Brand Consultant

“Purpose fuels passion.”

Method to the madness

 

An experienced account servicing lead, Raudha brings a demonstrated history of managing and consulting on projects across the world of advertising and branding, and across various industries, from healthcare, the public service sector, education, publishers, FMCG to telcos, technology and hospitality, both locally and globally.

 

She thrives on unravelling complex situations and in helping businesses and brands work towards effecting change that will impact the market as we know it through effective verbal and visual communication – the outcome of a rigorous brand building process.

 

Outside of work, she enjoys the great outdoors – a source of inspiration and relaxation – and soaking up as much of the sun with her family.

close-bio
Dhanesa Poobalan
Brand Consultant

“The results will come if you put in the effort.”

Ysabel Tan
Brand Consultant

“Live in the leading – the spaces in between the rules.”

Megan Neo
Associate Brand Consultant

“Do what will make your cat proud.”

Fikrie Zainal
Associate Brand Consultant

“Don’t watch the clock; do what it does. Keep going.”

Sum
Production Manager

“World-class production meets world-class attitude.”

Rica Dujon
Senior Brand Designer

“If you love something, it will work and that’s the only real rule.”

Siok Teng
Senior Brand Designer

“Simplicity is sophistication, imagination and truthfulness.”

JunJ Kwan
Senior Brand Designer
Ridhwan
Digital Designer

“Efficiency meets creativity.”

Mei Ling
Brand Designer

“Creativity comes from freedom.”

Fairuz Rawi
Knowledge Manager

“Synthesising insights in search of awesomeness.”

Susan Tan
Finance & Admin Manager

“Life is about making an impact, not making an income.”

Elizabeth Dass
Copywriter

“Giving them something to talk about.”

Recognition

Our collaboration with our clients has created award-winning work that has transformed businesses and built relationships that last.

1
President’s Design Award
3
Brand Consultancy of the Year Awards
6
Marketing Excellence Awards
2
Singapore Design Awards – Asia’s Top Design Practice
25
Singapore Design Awards
2
Singapore Promising Brand Awards
1
Singapore Brand Award
2
Singapore Retail Association Awards
1
Singapore Iconic Design Award
1
Singapore Star Packaging Award
3
Star Brand Awards
5
Singapore Annual Report Awards

Full awards listing

2018
Marketing Magazine’s Agency of the Year Awards
Brand Consultancy of the Year (Silver)

2017
Marketing Magazine’s Agency of the Year Awards
Brand Consultancy of the Year (Bronze)

2016
Marketing Excellence Awards
Kayamila – Excellence in Brand Strategy (Bronze)

Asia Communications Awards
Progresif Cellular – Best Brand Campaign

Marketing Magazine’s Agency of the Year Awards
Brand Consultancy of the Year (Finalist)

Singapore Design Awards
Progresif Cellular – Communication – Branding (Gold)

2015
President’s Design Award – Design of the Year
Library@Orchard

Marketing Excellence Awards
Meadow Gold Premium Ice Cream – Excellence in Brand Strategy (Finalist)

Singapore Good Design Mark – SG50 Special Edition
Changi Airport Singapore

Singapore Design Awards
Asia’s Top Design Practice – Branding
Asia’s Top Design Practice – Multi-Disciplinary

2014
Marketing Excellence Awards
Sport Singapore – Excellence in Government Sector Marketing (Silver)
Peperoni Pizzeria – Excellence in Brand Strategy (Certificate of Excellence)

Singapore Design Awards
Asia’s Top Design Practice – Branding
Asia’s Top Design Practice – Multi-Disciplinary

2013
Marketing Excellence Awards
Olam Sustainability Program – Excellence in CSR (Silver)
BaliThai – Excellence in Brand Strategy (Certificate of Excellence)

2012
Marketing Excellence Awards
Nature’s Wonders – Packaging Design (Gold)
Tai Sun Nuts – Packaging Design (Bronze)

Singapore Design Awards
Dunlopillo – Branding (Silver)
NTUC Next U – Branding (Bronze)
NTUC Next U – Multi-Disciplinary Design (Bronze)
NTUC Unity Healthcare – Branding (Bronze)
U&Me 50th Labour Movement – Branding (Bronze)
Kewalram Chanrai 150th – Multi-Disciplinary Design (Bronze)
Kota Iskandar Destination – Multi-Disciplinary Design (Bronze)
Ogawa World – Branding (Bronze)
Ogawa World – Multi-Disciplinary Design (Bronze)
Straits Resources Annual Report – Print (Bronze)

2010
Singapore Design Awards
Lamitak – Brand Identity (Silver)
Lamitak – Logo (Gold)
Carlton Hotel – Brand Identity (Silver)
Carlton Hotel – Logo (Bronze)
Café Mosaic – Brand Identity (Silver)
Café Mosaic – Logo (Bronze)
NTUC LearningHub – Brand Identity (Bronze)
NTUC LearningHub – Logo (Bronze)

TAK – Logo (Bronze)
Cuscapi – Branding (Bronze)
Signature Identity System – Branding (Bronze)
Sime Darby GoFresh – Packaging (Bronze)

2009
Singapore Design Awards
NTUC – Brand Identity (Gold)
Changi Airport Group – Brand Identity (Merit)
Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore – Brand Identity (Merit)
My First Skool – Brand Identity (Finalist)
Olam – CSR Report (Finalist)

2007
Singapore Packaging Star Award
CHNG Kee’s Spice of Life

2006
SRA Retail Awards
Best New Entrant of the Year – Chng Kee’s Spice of Life (Sentosa)

2005
Star Brand Awards
Boncafe I-café Instant Coffee (Singapore)
Boncafe I-café Instant Coffee (Asia Gold)

Singapore Iconic Design Award
OCBC Bank

2004
Star Brand Awards
Chng Kee’s – Packaging (Singapore)

2002
Singapore Promising Brand Awards
Most Distinguished Brand (Product Category) – Chng Kee’s (1st)
Most Distinguished Brand (Service Category) – Kingsmen (1st)

2000
Hong Kong Design Awards
Del Monte Pacific
ABC Stout

Singapore Annual Report Awards
DBS Bank

1999
Singapore Annual Report Awards
Singapore Airlines Limited
DBS Bank

1998
Singapore Annual Report Awards
Singapore Airlines Limited

1997
Singapore Annual Report Awards
Singapore Airlines Limited

1996
Singapore Design Awards
Dragon Brand Bird’s Nest

1995
UK DBA Design Effectiveness Award

Monsoon (Gold)