ASIA PACIFIC - Tom Doctoroff is leaving his role as Asia Pacific CEO of J. Walter Thompson (JWT) and handing leadership of the region over to John Gutteridge, who has been managing Australia & New Zealand since 2011.
“Tom’s indefatigable passion for building domestic and global brands, and his expertise on China has set him as a business leader and our agency apart in this critical, high-growth market," said JWT Worldwide CEO, Tamara Ingram.
“I’m confident John will build on that momentum. He is a strategic thinker and a decisive leader who injects a very infectious energy and passion into everything he does,” she added.
According to the agency, Gutteridge's appointment is part of a long-term succession plan mapped out over the last year by the agency's Asia Pacific executive committee. He began his career with JWT in the UK and at the age of 30 became MD of JWT New Zealand in 2004.
Under his watch, JWT ANZ acquired two digital agencies Heyday and Webling, launched a new content business Colloquial, and took management control of shopper marketing agency Evo.
The agency claims its ANZ business has grown by more than 75 percent since Gutteridge assumed leadership with business wins that include Tourism New Zealand.
Gutteridge, who is now 42, will work out of the network’s Asia Pacific office in Singapore and described Doctoroff as "an inspiration to many".
"I admire the sense of community he’s worked hard to create across such a diverse group of countries," he added.
Doctoroff, who has spent 24 years with the JWT, including 22 in Asia, is moving back to New York for a new opportunity, which he is expected to announce soon.
He started the Asia leg of his career in Hong Kong in 1994, became MD of JWT Shanghai in 1998 and was appointed Asia Pacific CEO in 2013.
“After so long in Asia, a culture I have fallen in love with, it is nonetheless time to go home and pursue the next chapter of my life,” said Doctoroff.