Ajaz Ahmed is the CEO of AKQA, the ideas and innovation company he founded aged 21.

To contact Ajaz please email aa@akqa.com

In addition to his CEO responsibilities at AKQA, Ajaz serves on the Executive Committee of WPP and the boards of:

  • Elton John AIDS Foundation: fund frontline partners to prevent infections, fight stigma and provide treatment.

  • Virgin Unite founded by Sir Richard Branson: unite people and entrepreneurial ideas to create opportunities for a better world.

  • Lumos, founded by JK Rowling: promotes an end to the institutionalisation of children worldwide.

  • Mental Health Innovations, established by The Royal Foundation: use technology to reach people, especially young people, who feel isolated and alone to find a safe space to talk.

  • Prism The Gift Fund: increases the flow of funds into the charitable sector.

  • Ajaz is also an advisor to the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust.

Prior to his current trusteeships Ajaz served on the board of the Design Museum, the Institute of Contemporary Arts and The Prince’s Trust.

Ajaz received an MBE in the June 2018 Queen’s Birthday Honours for Services to Media.

Ajaz received an honorary degree of Doctor of Business Administration from the University of Bath in December 2018, conferred by HRH The Earl of Wessex.

Below is a collection of Ajaz’s thoughts, writing and interviews. All proceeds from Ajaz’s books, writing and public speaking are donated to causes voted for by AKQA employees.

brainwave feedthechildren medecins gosh pencils

Books

velocity

Velocity

Aa Limitless- books

Limitless

Defeat-Ajaz

Defeat

Articles

The Google Grand Tour of Italy main-large-8
Semi Permanent

Serendipity and Learning

An entrepreneurial journey with AKQA’s founder.

monocle-large-v4
Monocle

The Entrepreneurs

30-minute interview podcast about the AKQA journey, culture, clients and aspirations.

Campaign-Middle-East
Campaign Middle East

Innovation is simplification

An extract of Ajaz Ahmed’s book DEFEAT, a collaboration with artist Christian Watson.

AA Shots
Shots

Leadership and what matters

We’re about pushing the limits and explorations, counterbalanced with good engineering and execution.

limitless-perspective-large
Forbes

Lessons in Limitless

The relentless drive towards the future.

consumers-values-large
Fast Company

Consumers Respond to Timeless Values

Timeless values applied via new technology can democratize markets and extend across goods, services and experiences.

art-business-large
The Guardian

Bridging the Gap between Art and Business

Successful collaborations between brands and artists are possible, once outdated preconceptions are overcome.

entrepreneurs-large
The Guardian

Bravery, Creativity, Courage and Resilience

All aspiring entrepreneurs should read Rudyard Kipling's 'If' – every word of advice in it is for the ages.

digital-excelence-large
The Guardian

Resisting Ease is the Path to Digital Excellence

High achievement comes from persistence, not convenience, as exemplified in Ang Lee's use of 3D in Life of Pi.

brand-pivot-large
The Guardian

Its Never too Late to Pivot

Brands that champion what really matters to people will always have a future – but ditching any emotional attachment is the first step to achieving revival.

os-life-large
The Guardian

An Operating System For Your Life

Put technology to work for people and you're already taking steps towards that inspirational aspiration.

young-entrepreneurs-large
The Guardian

Young Entrepreneurs can Build a Better Future

There is opportunity to be had in difficult times when the old ideas are malfunctioning and people are more open to change.

simple-designs-large
The Guardian

Radically Simple Design Always Wins

The best digital innovations are ones that are simple and easy to use and keep your audience in mind.

Aa-Wired
Wired

A public announcement: advertising is over

Digital has changed things even more drastically. The phone is the passport to everything advertising was designed to obscure.

interface-brand-large
The Guardian

The interface is the Brand

Whether we are gathered around a campfire, a cathode ray tube or an iPad, it's the story that's being shared that matters.

identikit-advertising-large
The Guardian

The End is Nigh for Identikit Branding

It has never been easier for people to scan past or switch over, so to persist with identikit advertising campaigns is ridiculous.

steve-jobs-mba-large
Wired

The Steve Jobs MBA

Be zen, obsess over details, relentlessly improve everything and other lessons from Steve Jobs.

WPP-logo-AR19
WPP

AKQA Annual Report 2019

The savings will allow us to increase investment in the areas that will drive top-line growth in the future: creativity, technology and talent.

WPP Annual Report 2018 Installation Investor Day
WPP

AKQA Annual Report 2018

WPP has substantial assets, the most important of which is our people. As a talent business we need to transform at the right pace, and bring our people with us.

WPP-Grab
WPP

AKQA Annual Report 2017

As a worldwide team, we have the scale, flexibility and speed to deploy those skills where and when they are most needed.

Aa-WPP
WPP

AKQA Annual Report 2016

In a world where digital is everywhere, AKQA’s passion is a considered and intelligent experience at every connection.

Aa-WPP
WPP

AKQA Annual Report 2015

In 2015, AKQA’s collaboration with our clients delivered a continuous stream of imaginative, breathtaking work.

Aa-WPP
WPP

AKQA Annual Report 2014

At AKQA we believe in the imaginative application of art and science to create beautiful ideas, products and services.

Aa-WPP
WPP

AKQA Annual Report 2013

AKQA exists for two reasons: to help create the future for our clients; and to inspire excellent leadership from our people.

Interviews

The Drum logo
Interview July 2018

Use your work as an expression of your values

Aa-creative entrepreneurs
Interview October 2017

Ajaz Ahmed at the Design Museum

Aa-Learnerby
Interview April 2017

Attaining velocity in the age of disruption

FWA logo
Interview April 2017

Explore new solutions

Digiday logo
Interview March 2017

It’s important to embrace disruption

Raconteur logo
Interview March 2014

How leaders get top-down success

Aa-EconomicTimes
Interview October 2014

We exist to create the future for our clients

Apple logo
Panel May 2014

Creativity in Conversation: Youthful Thinking

The Drum logo
Interview April 2014

What makes a leader

iTunes logo
Interview August 2013

The AKQA Story

Adobe logo
Interview September 2012

The shift to mobile

Google logo
Interview April 2012

Executive Insight