Staff Reporters
Aug 8, 2022

Move and win roundup: Week of August 8, 2022

OpenMind, Poly, G Squared, Wondrlab, TBWA Sydney, Japan Airlines, Dentsu International and Tag help kick-off Campaign Asia-Pacific’s weekly round-up of account wins and people hires.

Campaign compiles a new 'Move and win roundup' as each week progresses. 
This edition will cover August 8 through August 12, 2022. 
Catch up on past people moves and business wins

OpenMind Agency, a dedicated Nestlé team operated by GroupM, wins agency of record for Nestlé Philippines. Following a multi-agency pitch in May, the move effectively consolidates Nestlé Philippines’ entire media business comprising SEO, SEM, and e-retail search under one agency.

Former chief customer officer of Betfair Australia, Nick Thomas, has joined marketing transformation agency, Lution, as their new partner and chief strategy officer. Thomas spent just over two years with Betfair, overseeing both marketing and customer strategy. For the last six months, he’s been working as a marketing and digital consultant.

Stink Studios has appointed Etienne Chia to run both of its China offices as managing director. He will oversee the creative agency’s operations in APAC, reporting to group managing director James Britton. Chia, who replaces Ramzi Chaabane who is leaving the company, joins from Accenture Song, where he was responsible for the Jaguar Land Rover account. Prior to that, he held several creative and strategic leadership roles in various digital and experiential agencies in China, including Freeman and Lightbridge. In his new role, Chia will work closely with creative director Addie Hao. 

Following a review, Australian loyalty programme Flybuys has appointed Thinkerbell as its media buying agency. The brand ended its relationship with incumbent OMD. The decision to competitively seek proposals through an RFP procurement process was made as Flybuys embarks on a “brand evolution process” over the next 12 months. The new partnership will commence on September 1. 

Creative technology agency WhiteGREY has launched a new sustainability business practice called WhiteGREY Positive (WG+)aimed at helping brands and NGOs achieve their sustainability goals and reduce environmental impact. WG+ will be led by WhiteGREY’s national chief strategy officer Simon Wassef, supported by the wider creative, strategy and technology teams. WG+ is already working with clients such as Volvo, HSBC and Scentre Group to drive responsible business agendas. 

Coles Group has extended its partnership with OMD in Australia. The agency has also launched Smith St, a bespoke agency dedicated to Coles and named after the location of the very first Coles General store in 1914 on Smith St, Collingwood. OMD has worked with Coles since 2015.

Mandarin Oriental has appointed senior sales members including Raphael Lanfant who joins as global VP of channel sales, a newly created role for overseeing the global revenue growth and the effectiveness of the newly formed Global Channel Sales and Distribution organisation. Lanfant, who is based in Singapore, joins from Alibaba, where he held the position of global head of international hotel partnerships. Geoffrey Webb has been appointed as VP of global sales partners and will oversee the five regional sales hubs responsible for driving revenue from the global travel agencies and tour operators. He joined Mandarin Oriental in 2019 as director of commercial strategy for the group’s flagship property in Bangkok. He will relocate to London for this role. Meanwhile, Celine Du has been appointed VP of global industry partners and will be responsible for Mandarin Oriental’s global corporate and key account revenue. She joined the group in 2015 as VP of sales and marketing, Greater China before her promotion to VP of regional sales, Asia Pacific. She is based in Hong Kong. Lanfant will report directly to chief commercial officer Joanna Flint, while Webb and Du will report into Lanfant. 

Automotive group Cycle & Carriage (C&C) has selected Antsomi CDP 365 as its customer data platform (CDP) to strengthen its omnichannel customer experience. Under this partnership, C&C will use Antsomi CDP 365 to drive data-driven marketing activities with its customers. The platform will help C&C to unify customer data coming in from multiple data sources, which include its websites, ecommerce facility, digital ad campaigns, customer relationship management (CRM) system, roadshows and physical stores. 

Poly, the creative and content innovation hub from oOh!media, has appointed senior Thinkerbell executive, Josh Gurgiel, to the newly created head of strategy position. Gurgiel returns to oOh! after becoming head media thinker at Thinkerbell Melbourne. During his previous four year stint at oOh!, he was head of strategic client solutions, southern markets. 

Digital consultancy G Squared has appointed former Sydney Swans marketer Billy McLean as head of strategy and former Qantas marketer Kate Duffield as head of SEO and content in newly created roles. McLean and Duffield join the Sydney-headquartered agency following a repositioning focussing on consulting services across SEO, paid media and web, with a separate team dedicated to delivery and implementation. 

Sling & Stone, has expanded across Australia by opening an office in Melbourne and creating  additional hubs in Brisbane and Adelaide.

The agency’s first three Melbourne hires are:

  • Lucie Buchan, account director in the business team, from WE Communications.
  • Sarah Gordon, account director in the Business team, from Alt/Shift.
  • Courtney Phelps, senior account executive, previously at Keep Left.

In Adelaide:

  • Sling & Stone has hired Melissa van der Haak as senior account director.
  • The agency has and relocated Fran Chitoriski, who heads up the global people team.

In Brisbane:

  • Sanjay Dove has joined as acciunt director in the business team from UK agency Wildfire, alongside another transfer from Sydney— senior account manager, Chloe Maguire.

PR agency Redhill has appointed Do Sik (DS) Kim as its chief operating officer in Korea. Based in Seoul and working closely with Redhill Korea’s leadership team, DS will focus on driving local expertise and cross-market collaboration—with a sharp focus on the domestic market’s startup and tech investment ecosystem. Kim spent 26 years with television and radio broadcaster Seoul Broadcasting System, where he worked as a correspondent, and later led the digital transformation of its newsroom, prior to joining Redhill.

Wondrlab has hired  Rajesh Ghatge as CEO of its newly launched Wondrlab Technologies unit. Before joining Wondrlab, Ghatge was the CEO of Indigo Consulting and PubHub, and also the chief growth officer (India) at Publicis Groupe.

Kraft Heinz has named TBWA Sydney as creative agency of record for Golden Circle in a closed pitch process. They will be responsible for the entire beverages portfolio including the development of the Golden Circle masterbrand.

Director Fausto Becastti has signed with Sweetshop for representation across Asia. The conceptual filmmaker has been awarded at The One Show, D&AD, Ciclope Africa and The Loeries Awards.

Akira Mitsumasu, vice president, customer experience, data analytics and global marketing at Japan Airlines (JAL) has officially stepped down after 33 years with the company. A veteran in the aviation industry, Mitsumasu has held multiple leadership positions in his illustrious career and named one of Asia’s Best Marketers and celebrated amongst the 50 Most Influential Global Marketing Leaders as well. Mitsumasu is now headed to tech-enabled luxury concierge company Ten Lifestyle Group as general manager. He will continue to be based out of Tokyo.  

Dentsu International has appointed Michael Bass as the chief trading officer, Media, Dentsu Asia Pacific. With over 20 years’ experience, Bass’ has worked across several senior investment and trading roles in the media sector. He spent seven years at IPG Mediabrands as trading director of Initiative, before getting promoted to general manager, Investment at group level for the company. In the last three years, Bass was the chief investment officer for Dentsu ANZ. In the current role, he will be based in Sydney and report to Prerna Mehrotra, Chief Executive Officer, Media, Dentsu Asia Pacific.

Japan Airlines (JAL) has retained Mindshare China as its agency of record for a five-year term ending 2027. Mindshare China will continue to provide media planning and buying services for JAL, significantly extending the agency’s existing two-year strong relationship with the airline.

Global creative production agency Tag has acquired Sydney-headquartered social media firm, L&A Social, in a bid to scale its end-to-end social media services globally. The new acquisition is Tag’s fifth in as many years and marks a continuation of its strategy to offer their global client base market leading strategic, digital and content led production at scale.

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