PHD’s APAC CEO, Susana Tsui, told Campaign Asia-Pacific the business is particularly significant because it represents a global shift from a westword focus to Asia.
"This reflects a trend we’ve seen starting in IT and finance and shifting into mass-market goods," she said. "Both Asia’s population and buying power are growing, so more brands see APAC as a new center. That’s why we’ve invested so much in the Singapore team."
Johnnie Walker Blue is a top-shelf whiskey from Scotland and its UK based parent, Diageo, positions the product more as a luxury label rather than a mass-market spirit.
“Blue has always had more of a one-to-one strategy, but this planning win represents a move to a wider consumer audience. Diageo wanted an agency that’s strong in reaching a premium audience,” Tsui said.
PHD’s APAC team will manage the scope and focus of the media planning, selecting new channels to deploy, including digital strategies and retail activations.
Tsui said PHD is “proud to have the business,” but she also emphasized the wider story of an APAC team taking a global media lead as an important signal for the marketing industry as a whole.