Byravee Iyer
Feb 21, 2013

The Leading Edge expands operations in Asia; appoints new Singapore MD

SINGAPORE - Australian research company The Leading Edge has ramped up operations in Asia with the launch of its New Delhi office and the appointment of a new managing director in Singapore.

Justin Garret has been named the new MD for TLE's Singapore office
Justin Garret has been named the new MD for TLE's Singapore office

The expansion comes as the company changes its name to TLE and rebrands globally, in an effort to become a global boutique working across research, strategy and data.

TLE has been consulting across Asia, the Middle East and Africa, from its Singapore office for the past seven years, with research initiatives in China, Taiwan, Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, Hong Kong, Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Nigeria and India.

Clients in the region include Coca-Cola, Starbucks, Visa, The Walt Disney Company, Unilever and Virgin. Its new India office is already working with Coca Cola and Unilever.

The company’s new Singapore MD, Justin Garrett, will lead the expanded team. Garrett has previously held senior client roles at TNS Singapore and Nielsen in Hong Kong. Shweta Sabharwal Mallik, who originally joined The Leading Edge Singapore in 2007, will head the Indian arm.

“Clients in Asia are now looking for quality output and advice more than ever—not simply volume metrics and data,” Garrett said. “It’s great to come into an established company that clearly wants to redefine the research agency model and sees lots of room for growth.”

Sally Crockett, who became regional director of Asia in November 2011, said that over the past year TLE has invested in restructuring and growing the Asia team.

“Since TLE Singapore launched in 2005 we’ve been known as a boutique strategic qualitative agency servicing broader Asia,” she said. “Over the past 12 months we’ve invested in selecting the right talent to expand this offer to include strategic quantitative research, and consultancy and expertise in brand management, innovation and shopper marketing.”

Amit Phatak also joins the Singapore office as client director. Over the past two and a half years, TLE has undergone an aggressive global expansion and restructure under global CEO Andy Bateman, who joined in June 2010. TLE also has offices in Sydney, New York, London and recently launched in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

According to Bateman, the company is seeing about 30 per cent of its revenues coming from developing markets across Easter Europe, Asia and South America.

The demands on research has changed, Bateman said. “This means that if you need to crack a difficult problem and get a better answer then you probably need to attack it differently than you’ve done before.”

Founded in 1990 in Sydney, TLE is part of the Enero Group of Companies and Bateman sits on the Enero Global Leadership Team. 

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