Staff Reporters
Apr 16, 2019

Ogilvy parts from JWT in Malaysia; gets new leadership team

Ogilvy Malaysia will no longer share resources with JWT, now Wunderman Thompson. Nizwani Shahar and Campbell Cannon step up as co-CEOs, with Kurt Novack appointed to the creative driving seat.

Left: Campbell Cannon and Nizwani Shahar; right: Kurt Novack
Left: Campbell Cannon and Nizwani Shahar; right: Kurt Novack

Two long-time Ogilvy employees, Nizwani Shahar and Campbell Cannon, have been promoted as co-chief executives of the group's Malaysia office in a move that marks the end of the agency's short working partnership with JWT.

Shahar had been managing partner of the united agencies since mid-2018, when Ogilvy Malaysia and JWT Malaysia combined resources and leadership under a 'one company, two brands' philosophy headed by Saurabh Saksena.

In light of JWT's global realigment to become Wunderman Thompson, the brands have now "mutually agreed" to return to independent operations, according to an official statement from Ogilvy, "with each agency charting its own future course in line with their respective global and regional plans." Saksena now becomes CEO of Wunderman Thompson Malaysia, reporting to Annette Male, APAC CEO.

(David Mayo, who was head of Ogilvy Malaysia, resigned in August last year following the introduction of the new model, although he told Campaign Asia at the time that the decision was "less about Ogilvy and more about me.") 

Shahar first started at Ogilvy Malaysia in 2011, as managing partner. She led the Nestlé account and was instrumental in winning the CIMB business. 

Campbell Cannon, her fellow new co-CEO, first joined Ogilvy in Sydney, as a senior account manager, in 2006. He spent three years in New York before moving to Malaysia in 2013, and has worked with global and national clients such as Mondelez, Coca-Cola and U Mobile. 

Cannon and Shahar will report to Kent Wertime, co-CEO for Ogilvy Asia. 

The agency also gains a new group executive creative director in the form of American Kurt Novack, who joins from Leo Burnett in France. Novack spent an earlier five-year stint with Ogilvy in Paris before working at Leo Burnett. 

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