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Diva appoints stellar roster of NEDs to Board

By Emily Britt

27 May 2022 - 7 min read

The new Board will ensure that Diva can expand its full service creative offering to existing and future blockbuster videogaming clients, and continue to trailblaze best practise and innovation in videogame marketing, advertising and communications - both in terms of creative solutions, people management and ethics.

After two successful years advising Diva - Nic Roope, Deepa Shah, David Lilley, Alex Luff and Nick Sturge MBE have been officially appointed to the creative agency’s board as non-executive directors (NEDs). Across the last two years these advisors have assisted Diva’s founders - Suzy and Andy Barnes - in honing their vision for the agency. Their work has included strategic focus, business development, defining Diva’s distinctive identity and creating the framework for the agency’s principles and values.

The gaming native agency - which has 15 years experience of working with blockbuster videogaming clients - will continue to specialise servicing the games industry by bringing their love and knowledge of videogames to new and established clients. Moreover, as more and more companies and brands want to get into games, Diva is now well placed to play matchmaker - providing an expert bridge between the brands that are courting the sector and their gaming clients.

Most recently the advisory board has established an Executive Leadership Team - attracting key strategic talent from network agencies and videogaming*. Diva’s senior stakeholders are now poised to take the creative powerhouse to the next level by ensuring that Diva’s strong identity and principled framework is applied across company culture, their creative work and business development.

The Board now comprises:

Suzy Barnes

Remains CEO

Andy Barnes

Remains COO

Deepa Shah

Non-executive Chief Financial Officer

Nic Roope

Non-executive Chief Creative Officer

Alex Luff

Non-executive Chief Marketing Officer

David Lilly
David Lilley

Non-executive Director

Nick Sturge

Non-executive Chair

Suzy Barnes - Diva’s CEO and Founder commented:

“It’s undeniable that the pandemic years were challenging for everyone - as leaders we were trying our best to navigate unprecedented, shocking change and provide stability for our employees and clients. Yet, with the worst of times can come the best of times - and the lockdowns provided an opportunity to take a step back and recalibrate. We reviewed Diva’s foundational values and how we could build on those for the future of the agency. A first step was to create our advisory board, and - two years on - we’re delighted to have officially appointed them all as non-executive directors.”

Andy Barnes - Diva’s COO and Founder added:

“The decision to bring in world-class leadership will continue to help guide and steer company strategy and ensure Diva’s new Executive Leadership Team can deliver on its potential for growth and remain true to our values.”

Nick Sturge, Chair commented on behalf of the board:

“Diva’s founding partners - Suzy and Andy Barnes - had a strong vision for Diva, a strong sense that their strengths lie within videogaming, and a strong sense of treating their employees in a fair and equitable manner. The task over the last two years has been to hone their vision into a workable, strategic plan for growth and business development, build an effective board and turn their ideas - which are always creative and innovative into reality. We’re all proud to take the next steps with Diva and help this Bristol-based, gaming native creative company on its journey to global success and recognition.”

Diva is the UK’s leading gaming specialist creative agency and their client roster includes some of the biggest publishers, games and entertainment brands and companies in the world on videogaming. The 30-person-strong company, which is based in Bristol, but whose work has global scope and reach, is populated by talented individuals who live and breathe games and videogaming culture, making Diva almost uniquely placed to make the right creative decisions for clients specialising in videogaming in all its guises. Recent standout projects have included Elden Ring, Guardians of the Galaxy and PlayStation 5, and Diva has been nominated for numerous awards for their work in tandem with their clients.

Importantly Diva has always striven to be a Good Company - and create a safe and ethical working environment with employee wellbeing front and centre. In addition to Diva’s business development goals, a keystone of the agency’s ambitious growth strategy is to develop progressive employment policies, addressing burn-out culture and looking at fundamental issues such as the retirement shortfall. Diva will strive to share and hone those ideas with like-minded thought leaders across the creative and videogames industries. The combined strengths of Diva’s videogames specialism and Good Company ethos attracted the advisory board and have been strong foundations upon which to build over the last two years. Now it’s time for Diva to use their XP to upgrade to the Next Level…

*The new Executive Leadership Team is made up of:

James Whatley - Chief Strategy Officer

Emily Britt - Head of Communications

David Wall - Client Services Director

Stuart O’Neill - Executive Creative Director


Diva is the UK’s leading gaming specialist creative agency. Founded in 2007, the agency client roster includes some of the biggest publishers, games and entertainment brands in the world, including Activision, Epic Group, Sony PlayStation, Square Enix, Bandai Namco, Ubisoft, Netflix, Bethesda, Creative Assembly, Secret Mode and Curve Games.