Before joining GroupM, Xu (pictured) was general manager of Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan at Mondelez International, a role he started in June 2010.
Starting next year, his new role as CEO of GroupM China will oversee the media investment group, which is the parent company of Maxus, MEC, MediaCom, Mindshare, Xaxis and Filmworks. GroupM China as a whole invests US$7.3 billion (45 billion RMB) per annum in media buying, according to RECMA.
Reporting to Mark Patterson, CEO of GroupM Asia Pacific cum chairman of GroupM China, Xu will focus on both accelerating and setting the long-term growth strategy for the mainland business. He will also take a seat on the GroupM Asia Pacific management board.
Xu brings more than 20 years of sales, commercial and general management experience and skills to GroupM. The majority of his career has been based in Greater China with periods in the USA and Singapore.
He started his career at Procter & Gamble in July 1992 and then joined Danone China in October 2000, which Kraft Foods later acquired in 2008.
Patterson commented, “We set our sights at the highest level when looking for a new leader—a very high calibre person with a proven track record combined with many years of broad experience in China. We wanted someone who will bring a different perspective, fresh thinking, drive, energy, ambition, vision, balance of IQ and EQ to excel in the role."