In her new role, Ashton will primarily be responsible for marketing, business development and commercial activities for emerging markets, including India, China, Pakistan, East Asia, and Oceania.
She will lead a large emerging markets team of experienced brand, channel, product and specialised competence marketers based primarily in Singapore, along with 'dotted line' relationships with country marketing heads in the emerging markets region.
Ashton told Campaign that her initial plans upon settling into the role would be meeting the team, "listening, learning and building connections both inside and outside the company".
Prior to joining Philips, her most recent role was with appliance manufacturer Electrolux where she was senior vice president for marketing in Asia-Pacific, as well as president of Electrolux India. Before that, Ashton worked for Royal Dutch Shell for nine years in global and regional marketing roles based in Europe and Asia. She cut her teeth in the FMCG marketing industry in Canada with Johnson & Johnson and Kraft.
"I am very excited about the leadership, marketing and change management opportunity that moving to Philips represents," she said. "The lighting business in the emerging markets is at an important inflection point, with the emergence of energy efficient LEDs and controls. As such, brand, insights, product portfolio and innovation, value propositions, channel management and internal competence development have never been more important."
Ashton adds that lighting is a vital element in the execution of the company's strategy of becoming a 'focused and globally leading health and well-being company.'
Philips recently called for a review on its US$500 million global creative and media account.