Alison Weissbrot
May 13, 2024

RGA merges US and LATAM operations

EXCLUSIVE: April Quinn will oversee the region as Americas president in digital agency’s latest restructure.

April Quinn, president, Americas, RGA. (Photo credit: R/GA, used with permission)
April Quinn, president, Americas, RGA. (Photo credit: R/GA, used with permission)

RGA has brought together its US and Latin American operations under the purview of April Quinn, the agency exclusively shared with Campaign US. 

Previously US president, Quinn now leads the combined region of roughly 700 people as president of the Americas, reporting to global CEO Robin Forbes. 

She oversees a restructured leadership team, including Josefina Casellas as general manager of Spanish speaking LATAM, leading offices in Argentina and Chile. Marcio Oliveira continues to oversee Brazil as VP and managing director.

Paul Turzio is EVP, head of strategy and applied intelligence for the Americas, overseeing the agency’s newly combined research and strategy division in the region.

Meanwhile, Melissa Jackson Parsey was promoted to lead RGA’s brand design and consulting division as SVP, global managing director, a new role designed to drive further integration globally.

The restructure is the latest at RGA over the past year and a half to drive more collaboration across its offices, a model it calls “distributed creativity.” 

“We've got great talent across the network, but honestly, the way we'd been organized was a little cumbersome,” Quinn told Campaign US. “We had a lot of P&Ls by office, and then P&Ls by region, and it really did not incentivise our leads across those offices, or our talent, to really collaborate.”

She said the new structure will allow offices in the US to better leverage specialised talent in LATAM, particularly in product and experience and communication design, while giving LATAM-based talent opportunities on larger US clients.

The restructure is the latest in a series of reorganisations at RGA since in the fall of 2022. Last April, RGA cut 15% of its staff six months after laying off 60 people the previous November. The agency has undergone multiple rounds of layoffs since the pandemic. 

Multiple leaders have also exited the business in the past 18 months, including global CEO Sean Lyons, US chief creative officer Shannon Washington, global chief strategy officer Tom Morton, global media lead Ellie Bamford, global CMO Ashish Prashar and others. 

The latest layoffs came in January. Quinn said they were related to the Americas restructuring but no other staff cuts have been made since.

Digital agencies have struggled in the past few years as clients shrink their budgets and the digital transformation market slumps. Interpublic Group, parent company to RGA and digital agency Huge, has repeatedly pointed to both agencies as a drag on its bottom line in recent earnings calls, particularly as tech clients pulled back spending in pursuit of efficiencies. 

The new structure will enable RGA to get back to its core as a creative innovation agency, Quinn said, which is particularly important for talent who have been through upheaval. 

“Over the years, we've added on additional services, and perhaps spread ourselves a little too thin,” she said. “Despite all the changes we've been through, we are still RGA at our core—innovation and technology is baked into our DNA. So I think reminding everyone of that…gives folks some comfort.”

Quinn sees CRM and brand design as growth areas for RGA and is focused on leveraging relationships in those areas to grow organically with clients into other service lines. 

She said that while tech clients are beginning to spend again, “there is still some hesitancy, for sure” and business is taking longer to convert. But she is optimistic that they will come back as they invest in marketing their consumer-facing AI tools.

“There's a lot of work that they're developing internally that will need to have an external story or experience to talk about it in the marketplace,” she said. 

Campaign US

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