Apr 7, 2014

20 women to watch in Asia-Pacific marketing

Campaign Asia-Pacific presents (in no particular order) 20 exceptional female professionals who are taking the marketing industry forward and are destined to achieve much more. Please see the captions for details on each woman's achievements. (We will be adding five of the 20 selected professionals to this gallery each day over the next few days; subscribers can already see the entire feature in the April print issue or emagazine.)

Rachel Zhu: Business director, M&C Saatchi AEIOU<br /><br />
In her role as business director at M&C Saatchi China over the past year, Zhu has driven some of the agency’s biggest client wins, including multiple pieces of business from Unilever. She led the proposal and negotiation for the Win Celebrity Management contract in November 2012 and won the first digital project from Unilever for the agency in August last year. Zhu pushes to establish emotional connections between consumers and the many ‘functional’ products and brands in China’s local market, such as Valspar-owned Huarun and the Unilever-owned Paints & Zhonghua toothpaste. Michael Liu, the agency’s MD and Greater China partner, describes her as always exceeding clients’ expectations, as well as his, by working relentlessly to improve service standards in the company.

Rachel Zhu: Business director, M&C Saatchi AEIOU

In her role as business director at M&C Saatchi China over the past year, Zhu has driven some of the agency’s biggest client wins, including multiple pieces of business from Unilever. She led the proposal and negotiation for the Win Celebrity Management contract in November 2012 and won the first digital project from Unilever for the agency in August last year. Zhu pushes to establish emotional connections between consumers and the many ‘functional’ products and brands in China’s local market, such as Valspar-owned Huarun and the Unilever-owned Paints & Zhonghua toothpaste. Michael Liu, the agency’s MD and Greater China partner, describes her as always exceeding clients’ expectations, as well as his, by working relentlessly to improve service standards in the company.

Francine Kahn-Gonzalez: MD, BBDO Guerrero<br /><br />
Kahn-Gonzalez was promoted to MD of one of the Philippines’ most respected agencies in 2012 and has since delivered a string of successes. Last year the agency won BDO, Melco and FPH, as well as the digital businesses for Modess and Wrigley. She also led the teams responsible for standout work such as the Pantene #Whipit campaign, which saw the ‘Labels Against Women’ spot become the most successful online video from the Philippines, with over 40 million views. She believes there’s never been a more stimulating time to work in advertising in the Philippines, with more and more youth getting involved. “The country is making its mark on a global scale and I’d like to do my part,” she says. It sounds like she is in for a promotion, too. Tony Harris, chief executive of BBDO Guerrero says he has “absolutely no doubt” she has all the necessary attributes to “take over the captaincy of the agency in the near future”.

Francine Kahn-Gonzalez: MD, BBDO Guerrero

Kahn-Gonzalez was promoted to MD of one of the Philippines’ most respected agencies in 2012 and has since delivered a string of successes. Last year the agency won BDO, Melco and FPH, as well as the digital businesses for Modess and Wrigley. She also led the teams responsible for standout work such as the Pantene #Whipit campaign, which saw the ‘Labels Against Women’ spot become the most successful online video from the Philippines, with over 40 million views. She believes there’s never been a more stimulating time to work in advertising in the Philippines, with more and more youth getting involved. “The country is making its mark on a global scale and I’d like to do my part,” she says. It sounds like she is in for a promotion, too. Tony Harris, chief executive of BBDO Guerrero says he has “absolutely no doubt” she has all the necessary attributes to “take over the captaincy of the agency in the near future”.

Tammy Sheu: MD, JWT Beijing<br /><br />
JWT describes Sheu as someone with an uncommon combination of EQ and business acumen. She hates the word ‘manager’ and describes herself instead as a coach. She is passionate about developing agencies’ people skills and has led numerous talent initiatives designed to reinvigorate human resources throughout her career. When she arrived at JWT Beijing from what was Euro RSCG in late 2011, she instigated a new operating framework called Brandmate, which was intended to break down siloed processes and drive collaboration between digital and ‘traditional’ talent. Along with expanding the digital department from eight to 25 people, Sheu hired a training director to improve and monitor staff development, and bolstered the resources devoted to staff development and culture-building programmes. Since then, JWT’s ‘Happiness quotient’ has risen sharply and over the past year, staff turnover dropped from 40 per cent to 26 per cent. The injection of positive energy has lured big clients, with the agency last year contributing to the regional win of Microsoft’s digital business, as well as China Unicom and Yili.

Tammy Sheu: MD, JWT Beijing

JWT describes Sheu as someone with an uncommon combination of EQ and business acumen. She hates the word ‘manager’ and describes herself instead as a coach. She is passionate about developing agencies’ people skills and has led numerous talent initiatives designed to reinvigorate human resources throughout her career. When she arrived at JWT Beijing from what was Euro RSCG in late 2011, she instigated a new operating framework called Brandmate, which was intended to break down siloed processes and drive collaboration between digital and ‘traditional’ talent. Along with expanding the digital department from eight to 25 people, Sheu hired a training director to improve and monitor staff development, and bolstered the resources devoted to staff development and culture-building programmes. Since then, JWT’s ‘Happiness quotient’ has risen sharply and over the past year, staff turnover dropped from 40 per cent to 26 per cent. The injection of positive energy has lured big clients, with the agency last year contributing to the regional win of Microsoft’s digital business, as well as China Unicom and Yili.

Sandra Marichal: Strategy director, Southeast Asia, FutureBrand<br /><br />
Marichal’s rise is undeniably impressive. The London Business School graduate has progressed from junior consultant to her current role in just four years — and is still only 27. She initially planned to be a management consultant, but the prospect of spending the best years of her life crunching data in a back office made her realise she could offer more in a creative environment. So far, Marichal has been responsible for winning FutureBrand Singapore’s biggest consumer account, Asia Brewery, and has led corporate rebranding for Petronas. For a client in the Philippines, she helped strengthen the relationship between departments by setting common performance KPIs, and shifted company focus from revenue to profit, helping it preserve growth in 2013 despite a market decline. Chay Cruel, a client from Asia Brewery, sums it up simply: “Sandra is one of the few consultants I have worked with who has a strong grasp of client needs.”

Sandra Marichal: Strategy director, Southeast Asia, FutureBrand

Marichal’s rise is undeniably impressive. The London Business School graduate has progressed from junior consultant to her current role in just four years — and is still only 27. She initially planned to be a management consultant, but the prospect of spending the best years of her life crunching data in a back office made her realise she could offer more in a creative environment. So far, Marichal has been responsible for winning FutureBrand Singapore’s biggest consumer account, Asia Brewery, and has led corporate rebranding for Petronas. For a client in the Philippines, she helped strengthen the relationship between departments by setting common performance KPIs, and shifted company focus from revenue to profit, helping it preserve growth in 2013 despite a market decline. Chay Cruel, a client from Asia Brewery, sums it up simply: “Sandra is one of the few consultants I have worked with who has a strong grasp of client needs.”

Jaehee Jung: Account manager, Y&R Korea<br /><br />
Born in Korea, raised in New Zealand and educated in Sydney, Jung believes her nomadic background helps her adapt to new environments quickly. An architecture degree sets the young account manager apart, but also gives her a foundation for understanding objectives, conceiving solutions and selling ideas. Jung learns what her clients are passionate about and decodes the most baffling briefs. With that insight, she’s won every recent pitch, including Chanel and Pfizer. Y&R singles her out as someone who provides outstanding service to clients and peers and has added value to its operation as a whole. On a bigger scale, WPP has placed her in its ‘High Potential Group’. Y&R Korea’s CEO HS Jeong says Jung is “a main driver of Y&R Korea. Internally, she is a best conductor of teamwork; externally, she is a great performer who delivers results.”

Jaehee Jung: Account manager, Y&R Korea

Born in Korea, raised in New Zealand and educated in Sydney, Jung believes her nomadic background helps her adapt to new environments quickly. An architecture degree sets the young account manager apart, but also gives her a foundation for understanding objectives, conceiving solutions and selling ideas. Jung learns what her clients are passionate about and decodes the most baffling briefs. With that insight, she’s won every recent pitch, including Chanel and Pfizer. Y&R singles her out as someone who provides outstanding service to clients and peers and has added value to its operation as a whole. On a bigger scale, WPP has placed her in its ‘High Potential Group’. Y&R Korea’s CEO HS Jeong says Jung is “a main driver of Y&R Korea. Internally, she is a best conductor of teamwork; externally, she is a great performer who delivers results.”

Ellen Hou: Group MD, McCann Worldgroup Shanghai/chief strategy officer, McCann Worldgroup Greater China<br /><br />
Applying for her first job at TBWA, Hou’s future boss told her that her heavy work boots and big black backpack won her the role as they marked her out as a nonconformist. She proved herself to have substance as well as style though, and was soon promoted to head of planning for Greater China. In 2012, she was appointed chief strategic architect and culture officer at McCann Worldgroup, charged with building a planning function from scratch and shaping a culture true to McCann. Since joining, Hou has led a number of innovative campaigns such as L’Oréal’s ‘Women of worth’, and revolutionised the planning team, fusing brand planning, design, integration planning, project management and media planning to create a holistic business solution. She also launched an open innovation service to consult on new product development and experiential marketing.

Ellen Hou: Group MD, McCann Worldgroup Shanghai/chief strategy officer, McCann Worldgroup Greater China

Applying for her first job at TBWA, Hou’s future boss told her that her heavy work boots and big black backpack won her the role as they marked her out as a nonconformist. She proved herself to have substance as well as style though, and was soon promoted to head of planning for Greater China. In 2012, she was appointed chief strategic architect and culture officer at McCann Worldgroup, charged with building a planning function from scratch and shaping a culture true to McCann. Since joining, Hou has led a number of innovative campaigns such as L’Oréal’s ‘Women of worth’, and revolutionised the planning team, fusing brand planning, design, integration planning, project management and media planning to create a holistic business solution. She also launched an open innovation service to consult on new product development and experiential marketing.

Jacqui Lim: MD, ZenithOptimedia Singapore<br /><br />
Adam Hemming, chief executive of ZenithOptimedia Singapore, believes Lim has “the most incredible appetite for work I have seen in anybody I have ever worked with”. In three years, the tenacious Lim has soared from account director to GM to MD, and has been responsible for the development of Zenith’s Newscast team, tripling its revenue in just one year. Lim was single-handedly responsible for the capture of the agency’s biggest new-business win of 2013, Changi Airport, and, with the rest of her team, has won the agency 15 awards. She’s also been a central figure in the foundation of the Publicis Viva Women network — a new internal agency group that explores ways to make it easier for mothers to continue working. She’s a passionate proponent of work/life balance, while maintaining the highest standards of professional excellence, a combination Hemming says has made her “a massive asset” to the agency.

Jacqui Lim: MD, ZenithOptimedia Singapore

Adam Hemming, chief executive of ZenithOptimedia Singapore, believes Lim has “the most incredible appetite for work I have seen in anybody I have ever worked with”. In three years, the tenacious Lim has soared from account director to GM to MD, and has been responsible for the development of Zenith’s Newscast team, tripling its revenue in just one year. Lim was single-handedly responsible for the capture of the agency’s biggest new-business win of 2013, Changi Airport, and, with the rest of her team, has won the agency 15 awards. She’s also been a central figure in the foundation of the Publicis Viva Women network — a new internal agency group that explores ways to make it easier for mothers to continue working. She’s a passionate proponent of work/life balance, while maintaining the highest standards of professional excellence, a combination Hemming says has made her “a massive asset” to the agency.

Peony Wu: Chief digital officer, Ogilvy China; MD, Ogilvy & Mather Advertising Beijing<br /><br />
Originally from Hong Kong, Wu has played an important part in transforming Ogilvy into an agency with digital capabilities at its core. As chief digital officer, she grew digital revenue for the agency as a whole significantly in 2013, doubling the group’s digital revenue share. She was also behind the launch of Ogilvy’s digital innovation labs in Beijing and Shanghai, which serve not only as showrooms, but as revenue generators. Wu’s achievements follow growing Neo@Ogilvy into one of China’s largest digital media agencies and launching pioneering instant messaging strategies for major clients well before it became ‘the next big thing’. Most importantly, she gets results for clients. “We love working with Peony because she cares about our business as if it were her own,” says Dan Li, GM of corporate marketing and brand management at Yili. “She invests her time, energy and passion in our brand and she helps us to see new opportunities and fresh insights that make a real difference to our work.”

Peony Wu: Chief digital officer, Ogilvy China; MD, Ogilvy & Mather Advertising Beijing

Originally from Hong Kong, Wu has played an important part in transforming Ogilvy into an agency with digital capabilities at its core. As chief digital officer, she grew digital revenue for the agency as a whole significantly in 2013, doubling the group’s digital revenue share. She was also behind the launch of Ogilvy’s digital innovation labs in Beijing and Shanghai, which serve not only as showrooms, but as revenue generators. Wu’s achievements follow growing Neo@Ogilvy into one of China’s largest digital media agencies and launching pioneering instant messaging strategies for major clients well before it became ‘the next big thing’. Most importantly, she gets results for clients. “We love working with Peony because she cares about our business as if it were her own,” says Dan Li, GM of corporate marketing and brand management at Yili. “She invests her time, energy and passion in our brand and she helps us to see new opportunities and fresh insights that make a real difference to our work.”

Lizi Hamer: Creative director, SapientNitro Singapore<br /><br />
A “force of nature” with the “enthusiasm of a school bus full of children on the way to the zoo” is how Hamer’s boss, SapientNitro MD Kim Douglas, describes his agency’s new creative director. Hamer joined the agency in Singapore a few months ago from Australia, where she championed female creativity at industry mentoring organisation, SheSays, while working full time as senior art director at Saatchi & Saatchi. Hamer is passionate about nurturing young talent and this was reflected in her commitment to Australian charity I-Manifest, in which she helped mould disadvantaged youths into budding young creatives. Since arriving in Singapore she has become an active member of SapientNitro’s own Women’s Leadership team to guide young females in their career progression. Nina Spannari, global digital marketing manager at Pernod Ricard, calls her “an amazing woman” who “epitomises a blueprint for living that we should all aspire to: hard-working, genuine, an ever-present listener [with] determination that never quits”.

Lizi Hamer: Creative director, SapientNitro Singapore

A “force of nature” with the “enthusiasm of a school bus full of children on the way to the zoo” is how Hamer’s boss, SapientNitro MD Kim Douglas, describes his agency’s new creative director. Hamer joined the agency in Singapore a few months ago from Australia, where she championed female creativity at industry mentoring organisation, SheSays, while working full time as senior art director at Saatchi & Saatchi. Hamer is passionate about nurturing young talent and this was reflected in her commitment to Australian charity I-Manifest, in which she helped mould disadvantaged youths into budding young creatives. Since arriving in Singapore she has become an active member of SapientNitro’s own Women’s Leadership team to guide young females in their career progression. Nina Spannari, global digital marketing manager at Pernod Ricard, calls her “an amazing woman” who “epitomises a blueprint for living that we should all aspire to: hard-working, genuine, an ever-present listener [with] determination that never quits”.

Irene Shum: Director of client service, Saatchi & Saatchi Shanghai<br /><br />
Named Greater China Account Person of the Year in Campaign’s Agency of the Year awards 2013, Shum looks destined for bigger things. She has helped double the office’s revenue over two years and in 2013 brought in business from the likes of Minute Maid, Buick and CCTV. More importantly, though, she has transformed business. For Minute Maid, she helped increase product sales by 30 per cent, while she helped Buick reposition itself to tap into a whole new male-market segment. Stephen Drummond, senior director of integrated marketing communications at Coca-Cola Greater China, describes Shum as “a great listener” who “cultivates a true partnership relationship. With Irene, you never feel that you are being ‘sold’ something.”

Irene Shum: Director of client service, Saatchi & Saatchi Shanghai

Named Greater China Account Person of the Year in Campaign’s Agency of the Year awards 2013, Shum looks destined for bigger things. She has helped double the office’s revenue over two years and in 2013 brought in business from the likes of Minute Maid, Buick and CCTV. More importantly, though, she has transformed business. For Minute Maid, she helped increase product sales by 30 per cent, while she helped Buick reposition itself to tap into a whole new male-market segment. Stephen Drummond, senior director of integrated marketing communications at Coca-Cola Greater China, describes Shum as “a great listener” who “cultivates a true partnership relationship. With Irene, you never feel that you are being ‘sold’ something.”

Kimie Morishita: Senior manager, Dentsu Aegis Network Division, Dentsu<br /><br />
Morishita’s diverse career trajectory shines as one of the most compelling advertising stories in recent years. In 2012, she led Dentsu’s announcement of its acquisition of Aegis on the London Stock Exchange. She proceeded to manage internal and external communications and has worked extensively as a leader on the post-merger integration project, which has gone remarkably smooth. Her early career was unconventional for Dentsu. Six years after joining as a planner, she won a Fulbright Scholarship and left the company to study in the United States. After acquiring her MBA at Kellogg Business School, with a  major in marketing and public/non-profit management, she joined McKinsey as a strategic consultant to a variety of firms, including a semiconductor manufacturer on its cost-cutting strategy, and an electronics company on a new venture. Moving back to Dentsu, she became an account executive working for numerous public sector clients such, as Japan Post, and helpped them through dramatic business changes, including privatisation. A spokesperson for Dentsu praises her ability to unite people, cultures and businesses and says the agency’s priority “is to nurture talented people like her who are proactive in the global marketplace”.

Kimie Morishita: Senior manager, Dentsu Aegis Network Division, Dentsu

Morishita’s diverse career trajectory shines as one of the most compelling advertising stories in recent years. In 2012, she led Dentsu’s announcement of its acquisition of Aegis on the London Stock Exchange. She proceeded to manage internal and external communications and has worked extensively as a leader on the post-merger integration project, which has gone remarkably smooth. Her early career was unconventional for Dentsu. Six years after joining as a planner, she won a Fulbright Scholarship and left the company to study in the United States. After acquiring her MBA at Kellogg Business School, with a major in marketing and public/non-profit management, she joined McKinsey as a strategic consultant to a variety of firms, including a semiconductor manufacturer on its cost-cutting strategy, and an electronics company on a new venture. Moving back to Dentsu, she became an account executive working for numerous public sector clients such, as Japan Post, and helpped them through dramatic business changes, including privatisation. A spokesperson for Dentsu praises her ability to unite people, cultures and businesses and says the agency’s priority “is to nurture talented people like her who are proactive in the global marketplace”.

Kelly Woh: Creative director, AKQA Shanghai<br /><br />
Since joining AKQA Shanghai in 2009, Woh has established a reputation for being one of China’s strongest digital creatives. She is renowned for her award-winning integrated and digital campaigns for global clients such as Nike, Kraft, Unilever, Knorr and Volkswagen. Woh’s Nike #Win­AgainstTheElements# campaign featured a real-life game on the Weibo API and picked up China’s first Mobile Lion win at Cannes last year. Her Nike WeChat iD campaign, which enabled consumers to order customised Nike Free shoes online through WeChat, is another example of commendable service-oriented thinking. Woh is a passionate mentor, committed to nurturing upcoming talent. She participated in the One Club Portfolio Reviews 2013, which offers young professionals the opportunity to obtain professional criticism from the industry’s top creatives. She is frequently invited to judge high profile digital awards in Asia and beyond.

Kelly Woh: Creative director, AKQA Shanghai

Since joining AKQA Shanghai in 2009, Woh has established a reputation for being one of China’s strongest digital creatives. She is renowned for her award-winning integrated and digital campaigns for global clients such as Nike, Kraft, Unilever, Knorr and Volkswagen. Woh’s Nike #Win­AgainstTheElements# campaign featured a real-life game on the Weibo API and picked up China’s first Mobile Lion win at Cannes last year. Her Nike WeChat iD campaign, which enabled consumers to order customised Nike Free shoes online through WeChat, is another example of commendable service-oriented thinking. Woh is a passionate mentor, committed to nurturing upcoming talent. She participated in the One Club Portfolio Reviews 2013, which offers young professionals the opportunity to obtain professional criticism from the industry’s top creatives. She is frequently invited to judge high profile digital awards in Asia and beyond.

Edith Chou: GM, Isobar Taiwan<br /><br />
Jean Lin, Isobar’s new global chief executive, describes Chou as strategic, graceful under pressure, humble, calm and naughty. “That makes her a perfect leader for a digital business that embraces open-mindedness and requires very much a blend between left and right brain,” she says. Chou was appointed GM of Isobar Taiwan last year after starting as an account manager in 2004 and moving swiftly up the ranks, expanding her skill set from client management to include strategy planning and CRM. Chou is renowned as an innovation junkie. She established the Isobar NowLab community which champions the use of technology to connect people with brands and, upon taking the GM role, initiated a mobile-centric agency restructure to assist clients in adopting mobile solutions. The programme resulted in a total of 44 mobile business wins, directly contributing to a 20 per cent growth in revenue for 2013, as well as Campaign’s Agency of the Year award for Taiwan and nine additional Gold awards from the industry.

Edith Chou: GM, Isobar Taiwan

Jean Lin, Isobar’s new global chief executive, describes Chou as strategic, graceful under pressure, humble, calm and naughty. “That makes her a perfect leader for a digital business that embraces open-mindedness and requires very much a blend between left and right brain,” she says. Chou was appointed GM of Isobar Taiwan last year after starting as an account manager in 2004 and moving swiftly up the ranks, expanding her skill set from client management to include strategy planning and CRM. Chou is renowned as an innovation junkie. She established the Isobar NowLab community which champions the use of technology to connect people with brands and, upon taking the GM role, initiated a mobile-centric agency restructure to assist clients in adopting mobile solutions. The programme resulted in a total of 44 mobile business wins, directly contributing to a 20 per cent growth in revenue for 2013, as well as Campaign’s Agency of the Year award for Taiwan and nine additional Gold awards from the industry.

Adeline-Ausy Setiawan: Country media director, Unilever Indonesia<br /><br />
Starting as a Unilever marketing trainee, Setiawan worked her way up to lead Lifebuoy (soap), Sariwangi (tea) and Bango (soy sauce) to top category positions. In a market still focused on TV, she has also pioneered digital growth and promoted more progressive thinking within her company and its partners. In her current role, Setiawan has launched joint plans with key digital players such as Google and Facebook, and initiated mobile collaboration on benchmark-setting projects. Driving change year-on-year, her efforts have won internal awards at Unilever for game-changing returns on marketing investments. Her profile extends beyond her own company: Google Indonesia country manager Rudy Ramawy says Setiawan “keeps raising the bar and breaking through the clutter. She is effectively acting as a catalyst of major changes in Indonesia on how consumers engage with brands.”

Adeline-Ausy Setiawan: Country media director, Unilever Indonesia

Starting as a Unilever marketing trainee, Setiawan worked her way up to lead Lifebuoy (soap), Sariwangi (tea) and Bango (soy sauce) to top category positions. In a market still focused on TV, she has also pioneered digital growth and promoted more progressive thinking within her company and its partners. In her current role, Setiawan has launched joint plans with key digital players such as Google and Facebook, and initiated mobile collaboration on benchmark-setting projects. Driving change year-on-year, her efforts have won internal awards at Unilever for game-changing returns on marketing investments. Her profile extends beyond her own company: Google Indonesia country manager Rudy Ramawy says Setiawan “keeps raising the bar and breaking through the clutter. She is effectively acting as a catalyst of major changes in Indonesia on how consumers engage with brands.”

Christel Quek: Regional content lead, AMEA, Twitter<br /><br />
Quek likens joining Twitter to “coming home”. The young Singaporean joined in January after high profile stints at Samsung and Havas Media, but was a die-hard Twitter enthusiast long before that. She is representative of a generation for whom social media is not just a seamless part of life, but an enabler. “It feels as if I’ve come full circle,” she says, noting that Twitter has played an important role in helping her advance so quickly. Under the motto ‘Adapt with positivity, grow with humility’, Quek aims to help individuals and brands get as much out of Twitter as she has. Her role — developing content strategy for the platform and for brands and tying it to business results — is broad and challenging, and we are intrigued as to the direction she will take. At 23, Quek is only just getting started.

Christel Quek: Regional content lead, AMEA, Twitter

Quek likens joining Twitter to “coming home”. The young Singaporean joined in January after high profile stints at Samsung and Havas Media, but was a die-hard Twitter enthusiast long before that. She is representative of a generation for whom social media is not just a seamless part of life, but an enabler. “It feels as if I’ve come full circle,” she says, noting that Twitter has played an important role in helping her advance so quickly. Under the motto ‘Adapt with positivity, grow with humility’, Quek aims to help individuals and brands get as much out of Twitter as she has. Her role — developing content strategy for the platform and for brands and tying it to business results — is broad and challenging, and we are intrigued as to the direction she will take. At 23, Quek is only just getting started.

Christina Chong: Managing director, Bates CHI & Partners, Singapore<br /><br />
Many people claim to be change agents, but few actually are. Chong is different. Having defied her parents’ wishes and entered advertising back in 1997, she is now set to play an important role in the future of Bates CHI & Partners, an agency with big aspirations. In her five years at Ogilvy, she was instrumental in pulling in new business worth millions of dollars from the likes of Coca-Cola, DHL and Prudential. At BBH, her work on Vaseline has been impressive and she is credited with driving the regional wins of clients such as Google and Ikea. Much of her success is down to her willingness to challenge conventional practice in the interest of clients. Her continued passion for the industry, combined with a no-nonsense approach, make her a major asset to Bates CHI & Partners, and we will follow with interest her efforts to establish the Singapore office as a flagship for the network.

Christina Chong: Managing director, Bates CHI & Partners, Singapore

Many people claim to be change agents, but few actually are. Chong is different. Having defied her parents’ wishes and entered advertising back in 1997, she is now set to play an important role in the future of Bates CHI & Partners, an agency with big aspirations. In her five years at Ogilvy, she was instrumental in pulling in new business worth millions of dollars from the likes of Coca-Cola, DHL and Prudential. At BBH, her work on Vaseline has been impressive and she is credited with driving the regional wins of clients such as Google and Ikea. Much of her success is down to her willingness to challenge conventional practice in the interest of clients. Her continued passion for the industry, combined with a no-nonsense approach, make her a major asset to Bates CHI & Partners, and we will follow with interest her efforts to establish the Singapore office as a flagship for the network.

Margaret Key: COO Asia-Pacific, Burson-Marsteller<br /><br />
Key’s fresh-faced energy belies a wealth of public relations experience in some of the region’s most challenging markets. Having joined Burson-Marsteller in Korea in 2010, she has just been named the network’s COO for Asia. As market leader in Seoul, she brought in business from domestic giants such as LG and multinationals such as Bayer and Ford. Her experience also includes periods as managing director of Edelman Japan and director of that firm’s regional healthcare practice. Bob Pickard, chairman of Huntsworth Asia-Pacific, who has worked with Key throughout different stages of her career, describes her as a role model for young women in PR. He points to a “blend of ambition, social intelligence and networking skills that’s rare in our industry”. He also calls her, as an American, a “truly bicultural personality” who advocates a strong point of view from Asia and pushes back against ideas that don’t make sense for the region.

Margaret Key: COO Asia-Pacific, Burson-Marsteller

Key’s fresh-faced energy belies a wealth of public relations experience in some of the region’s most challenging markets. Having joined Burson-Marsteller in Korea in 2010, she has just been named the network’s COO for Asia. As market leader in Seoul, she brought in business from domestic giants such as LG and multinationals such as Bayer and Ford. Her experience also includes periods as managing director of Edelman Japan and director of that firm’s regional healthcare practice. Bob Pickard, chairman of Huntsworth Asia-Pacific, who has worked with Key throughout different stages of her career, describes her as a role model for young women in PR. He points to a “blend of ambition, social intelligence and networking skills that’s rare in our industry”. He also calls her, as an American, a “truly bicultural personality” who advocates a strong point of view from Asia and pushes back against ideas that don’t make sense for the region.

Wendy Soeweno: Partner, client leadership, Mindshare Indonesia<br /><br />
Leading one of Mindshare’s largest client portfolios, Soeweno exemplifies the fresh thinking that media agencies need. Her varied background helps: she has work­ed as a brand manager, a start-up pioneer in the entertainment industry and a sales executive for a leading local media property. She is not afraid to challenge systems. Last year, she initiated the concept of a reverse auction among TV stations, turning it into a win-win situation for clients and media owners. She has also helped brands grow by giving them reasons to look beyond TV, particularly when targeting female consumers, to online and mobile channels. Soeweno admits she has never been a fan of Excel spreadsheets. She aims to use data to fuel creativity rather than restrict it, and understands that as useful as numbers are, the best solutions come from direct interaction with people. In short, she is someone with the potential to take media thinking to a new level, not just in Indonesia, but in Asia as a whole.

Wendy Soeweno: Partner, client leadership, Mindshare Indonesia

Leading one of Mindshare’s largest client portfolios, Soeweno exemplifies the fresh thinking that media agencies need. Her varied background helps: she has work­ed as a brand manager, a start-up pioneer in the entertainment industry and a sales executive for a leading local media property. She is not afraid to challenge systems. Last year, she initiated the concept of a reverse auction among TV stations, turning it into a win-win situation for clients and media owners. She has also helped brands grow by giving them reasons to look beyond TV, particularly when targeting female consumers, to online and mobile channels. Soeweno admits she has never been a fan of Excel spreadsheets. She aims to use data to fuel creativity rather than restrict it, and understands that as useful as numbers are, the best solutions come from direct interaction with people. In short, she is someone with the potential to take media thinking to a new level, not just in Indonesia, but in Asia as a whole.

Jessica Spence: Marketing director, Asia, Carlsberg<br /><br />
Having worked for a number of years in Eastern Europe, Spence is a relative newcomer to the region, taking on her current role in 2012. Encouragingly though, she is a passionate advocate for Asian insights and is not content to simply follow direction from Denmark. She believes there is no substitute for first-hand experience and spends a lot of her time simply talking to consumers to understand their motivations and behaviour. She is also a marketer who thinks in real time rather than relying on painstakingly planned campaigns. Her approach is working. With headquarters looking to Asia to offset declining volume in Europe, Spence has driven the uptake of Carlsberg sub-brand Tuborg in China and India, while market share for the company is as high as 74 per cent in some emerging markets.

Jessica Spence: Marketing director, Asia, Carlsberg

Having worked for a number of years in Eastern Europe, Spence is a relative newcomer to the region, taking on her current role in 2012. Encouragingly though, she is a passionate advocate for Asian insights and is not content to simply follow direction from Denmark. She believes there is no substitute for first-hand experience and spends a lot of her time simply talking to consumers to understand their motivations and behaviour. She is also a marketer who thinks in real time rather than relying on painstakingly planned campaigns. Her approach is working. With headquarters looking to Asia to offset declining volume in Europe, Spence has driven the uptake of Carlsberg sub-brand Tuborg in China and India, while market share for the company is as high as 74 per cent in some emerging markets.

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