Hallo© was founded by Wim Michels. He developed the plan for a post-academic study in strategy and concept development already in the late eighties. Inspired by the insights he gained from research about the curricula of art academies and universities and the needs of the creative industry. Moreover he was against the unilateral way companies were looking for talent, whereby a lot of talent felt between the shore and the ship. At that time he led the concept course of the Association of Advertising Agencies, developed by him and was executive creative director and vice president international of J. Walter Thompson. His plan he presented to the Association and various international organizations. The answer was standard: ”You're ahead of your time and it never goes in that direction”.
In 1997 Wim Michels finally got the opportunity to realize his plan. In 1998 he started the Hallo© Academy with the support of the three industry associations and a number of phenomena including Erik Kessels, Teun Anders, Jacques Koeweiden, Goos Geursen, Walter Amerika, Harry Puts and many others. After a few years the Associations withdrew and the academy had to stand on its own feet. To give the academy an extra financial boost he founded Hallo© Lab in 2001, the international Think-tank of Hallo© Alumni. In the same year he started Hallo© Masterclasses. Later on he launched Hallo© Training, Hallo© Workshops, Hallo© Seminars. All under his motto: “Everything is an opportunity”. In 2009 the Hallo© Academy for applied creativity was awarded by the Fondazione Claudio Buziol in Venice and the University of Venice, with the Fast Forward Price 2009 for excellence in teaching creativity. Nowadays Hallo© is recognized in the international creative world as a must for universal thinkers who want to succeed in the premier league of applied creativity.