David Blecken
Mar 16, 2015

W+K Tokyo names new managing director

TOKYO - Wieden + Kennedy has appointed John Rowe as MD of its Tokyo office as Blake Harrop moves to Europe to lead the agency in Amsterdam.

Rowe has been at Wieden + Kennedy for a decade
Rowe has been at Wieden + Kennedy for a decade

Rowe, who has been with Wieden + Kennedy since 2005, has worked as director of the network’s Facebook account for the past three years. He will relocate to Tokyo from Portland and start his new role on 20 April.

Alongside Rowe, Wieden + Kennedy’s leadership consists of ECDs Tota Hasegawa and Mike Farr. The agency has performed well under Harrop, who has been in Japan for four years.

Last year the agency fared particularly well, winning two awards in the Japan/Korea section of Campaign Asia-Pacific’s Agency of the Year and being named the runner-up Creative Agency of the Year for the sub-region. New additions to the portfolio included Citizen, the work for which has been well received.

Rowe told Campaign that his main priority would be to continue the agency’s momentum, and said he saw “plenty of opportunity to grow”.

“I don’t see the need for too much change,” he said. “I might challenge a few things, but probably not dramatically.”

Rowe said he would seek out “flagship clients in Japan” to achieve greater balance between local and international business.

Global clients in Japan include Nike, Facebook, Delta Airlines and Ben & Jerry’s, while local brands include Citizen, Otsuka Pharmaceuticals and Type. Over the course of his time at Wieden + Kennedy, Rowe has worked on accounts such as Starbucks, Heineken and Powerade. 


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