Coppersmith joins from IPG Mediabrands where he was senior vice-president, digital and innovation catalyst for the World Markets. He left the role at the end of last year and will not be replaced, according to Mediabrands.
Coppersmith started his new role in mid-January and reports to Sean O'Brien, CEO of Carat Asia-Pacific. He replaces Jake Vander Linden who left the post last August to join Mediacom in Berlin.
According to Coppersmith the decision to make a career change was his "unashamed car fanaticism" and a desire to work client-side again. "I've always wanted to work on a car brand and, while my last role with Mediabrands was great, and we made great progress, but it was by it's nature internally focused and I missed being close to the work," he explained.
In this new role, Coppersmith will be helming GM's media buying business across Asia with the exception of China. The company's top brand in the region is Chevrolet, followed by Holden with Opal and Cadillac in selected markets.
The decision to appoint Coppersmith also underscores the digital direction GM wants to take. "Digital is absolutely transforming the way people buy cars today, as a car manufacturer, you just have to be there."
One of Coppersmith's main tasks will be to build the regional team in Singapore and also ensure that local-market teams are geared for the direction the business will take over the next five to 10 years.
"GM has clearly stated its mission to make Chevrolet a top 10 global brand by 2022," said Coppersmith. According to Interbrand's 2013 Best Global Brands report, Chevrolet debuted on the rankings at number 89. The report's top ranking car brand was Toyota at number 14.
“With strong digital, innovations and management credentials, Gilad is a great asset to the team and the ideal leader for the General Motors business.I look forward to seeing how he drives innovation in the work we do in the coming year,” said Sean O’Brien, CEO of Carat Asia-Pacific.
Coppersmith brings with him more than 19 years' experience in the industry and has held senior roles at OMD and Starcom Worldwide in Canada, Starcom Worldwide, McCann Worldgroup and Universal McCann in China and PHD in London.