Keynote Speakers 2019

Martijn Timmermans

Event Designer

Martijn’s career started in customer experience marketing at DisneyMarriott and Singapore Airlines.

For many years he served as preferred EU event partner for media agency, Kenwood Experiences, (acquired by George P. Johnson). Producing product releases, roadshows, conferences, seminars and trade show exhibitions.


In 2015  he developed a number of tools, such as  Event StoryBoard a strategic event design tool that synchronizes event design with event owners.  Martijin will be taking us through the Event Storyboard 2.0 experience showcasing this for the first time here in New Zealand (more about this later)


As event designer, Martijn has a keen interest in intrinsic motivation, personal growth, and organisational culture. In his approach he mixes design thinking , story telling and expressive writing and has created concepts for a wide array of events and clients; Amsterdam RAI, ASN Bank The Red Line Project (Fresh Conference Award for Best Session Design), RijkswaterstaatInvoyageICCA World Congress, and ZAAM (Golden Giraffe Award Best Congress).


AT ETF 2019 he will present and workshop under the broad theme of event redesign taking us through the design processes that synchronise event design with owners and audience’s needs, with the ultimate aim of boosting innovation, creativity and meaningfulness, all done via the medium of storytelling.

Matthew Ellingsen

Co-founder & Design Director

Matthew co-founded Empathy to help organisations truly understand their customers, and design meaningful lasting relationships with them.

He trained at the internationally-renowned Central Saint Martins in London, specialising in design research and design psychology.

He has been able to interpret and connect analytical and creative angles from a young age, drawing on his musical abilities.

Matthew’s foresight of changing trends and behaviours helps businesses lead. He has led design teams in New Zealand and the UK and worked on significant projects for major organisations including Sony, Nike, Kiwibank, Sky TV, WCC, JUCY and MBIE (inc the New Zealand 2011 Office during Rugby World Cup).