Ruben Collin

15 Aug

founding partner @ the Brand Station


““What makes my heart tick?”, the ‘everyday question’ since my farewell to a pretty purposeless life as young ‘successful’ Dutch business owner, now 20 years ago. Energized by a heart-beat overdose during my subsequent half-decade in the music industry and creative industry at large, and inspired by a growing passion for strategic innovation, I founded a multinational creative non-profit in 2002. Our programs, built on the premise that creativity gives birth to innovation which in turn leads to progress, allowed many young creatives in Eastern and Southern Africa to prosper. It wasn’t Freshly Ground, Zonke or Zuluboy, a few of the many South African artists I’ve worked with, that brought me here on a permanent basis in 2010. It was Kim, my South African life partner and business partner, and her efforts to contribute to progress in South Africa. With the Brand Station, we’ve been able to assist numerous organizations and their brands -start-up and established- to bring meaning to the forefront. Making brands more relevant and emotionally important to people requires a deep understanding of people's needs and desires in their pursuit of happiness. Combining these insights with business rationale is key to success. Moreover, it makes my heart-tick everyday.”


Why do you want to be part of UCT Upstarts?
“Eleanor Roosevelt captured it well by saying: “the future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams”. UCT Upstarts is the place to be for dreamers that make future. And how rewarding to make future together.”

How would you ‘Re-educate Education’?
“Henry Ford once said: “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” Ford’s willingness to understand ‘why?’ is what led to large scale production of affordable cars instead of race-horse breeding programs. Re-educating education starts with that same question, why? What is the relevance and emotional importance for students, their families, teachers and society at large? The answers to these questions will not only assist to bring the right innovations to life at the right time, they’ll help craft a powerful framework for all brand related decision-making.”