Staff Reporters
Jan 25, 2021

Move and win roundup: Week of January 25, 2021

Mediabrands, Wunderman Thompson, Hindustan Unilever, FCB India, The PR Group, Lintas Live, Turespaña, MediaMonks, GCI Health, Wangfan Digital, ForwardPMX, BBDO Bangkok, AppsFlyer, Appnovation, Hulsbosch, The PR Group, TotallyAwesome, Lution, Sandpiper Communications, VMLY&R, The Trade Desk, Colenso BBDO, Wavemaker, Finsbury Glover Hering, Lowe Lintas, Dentsu Malaysia, Chimp&z, Blitz Advertising and more to come, in our weekly collection of people moves and account news.

Campaign compiles a new 'Move and win roundup' as each week progresses. 
This edition will cover January 25 through 29, 2021. 
Catch up on past people moves and business wins

Mediabrands Malaysia has promoted Audrey Chong to CEO of Universal McCann (UM) and Ensemble Worldwide. Chong has been a part of the Mediabrands network for the past three years as chief investment officer, responsible for all traditional and digital media investment decisions. In total she has over 25 years’ experience in media strategy, communications and planning, with roles across major agencies including M&C Saatchi, PHD, Starcom, Optimedia (now Blue449) and MEC. She replaces Amit Sutha, who has been promoted to a regional role as EVP, executive director global business of Interpublic’s new creative practice, Mediabrands Content Studio (MBCS). 

Wunderman Thompson Malaysia appointed Kit Ong as executive creative director. He was previously a partner in two independent creative agencies based in Vietnam and China; he served as chief creative officer of The Purpose Group in Saigon and a creative partner of LogicIllogic in Shanghai.

Hindustan Unilever has awarded FCB India the integrated communication mandate of brands Lakme and Elle 18, following a multi-agency pitch. FCB India will lead the creative mandate for the cosmetic brands as they eye their next phase of growth.

Asia-Pacific technology communications consultancy The PR Group won three new client wins this month, including telco, customer service firm Zendesk and Monopoly Explore! SG, Hasbro's digital version of its iconic game Monopoly. The PR Group will be working closely with as it expands further in the Australian market, supporting Zendesk with its employee engagement and internal communications across the Asia-Pacific region, and launching Monopoly which has been tailored to the Singaporean market.

Lintas Live, the digital-first creative PR agency of the MullenLowe Lintas Group, has won the social media marketing mandate for Turespaña, the Tourism Office of Spain, in India. Lintas Live will be responsible for management of the entire virtual community around Turespaña’s social media accounts in India, including content development, crisis management and online reputation management. The agency won the account following a multi-agency pitch. 

Chimp&z has won the digital and performance mandate of GRD, a protein supplement from Zydus Nutriva, which is a division of Zydus Healthcare. As per the mandate, the scope of work for the agency includes social media management, performance marketing, and website handling.

MediaMonks has won the University of New South Wales' digital experience platform business following a pitch. MediaMonks Australia has been appointed as the single partner of record for the University's Adobe Experience Cloud implementation. UNSW Sydney selected Adobe technology for its digital transformation objectives in 2018, and appointed a panel of Adobe partners at that time. As a panel member, MediaMonks has worked successfully with UNSW during 2019 and 2020, and now the university has decided it will be better served working with a single partner to drive its transformation agenda. Andrew Davenport, MediaMonks' APAC head of solutions strategy, said the win demonstrates that the MediaMonks offer is suitable for large-scale Australian clients intent on transforming their models through digital experience. UNSW is based in Sydney and has US$1.84 billion in annual revenue, more than 60,000 students and 6,000 staff. 

WPP-owned healthcare PR agency GCI Health has launched in Japan and India, two of the region's largest healthcare markets. (Full story)

In an appointment that was more than a year in the making, Publicis Groupe named Natalie Lam as its first group-level chief creative officer for Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa. (Full story)

Bill Wang, former managing director of Publicis Groupe China, has launched Wangfan Digital Communication. Wang founded Wangfan Interactive in 1997, as one of the earliest digital communication agencies in China. It was acquired by Publicis Groupe in 2011 and rebranded as Publicis Wangfan. Wang left Publicis Groupe in July 2020 after serving as COO of Publicis Digital and MD of Publicis Wangfan for nearly nine years. Wang said the agency will inherit the original's "unique gaming genes and continue to provide clients with digital integrated marketing services in gaming, esports, luxury, mother and baby, and FMCG categories.

Global data- and technology-driven marketing services company ForwardPMX appointed Marilyn Yeong as regional client vice president, based in Singapore. She has 15 years of industry experience in leadership roles at Carat, SearchGuru, Havas and M&C Saatchi. 

Todd Rone Parker has rejoined BBDO in Bangkok as executive creative director, overseeing creative for Ford ASEAN and IMG Markets. Rone previously worked at BBDO in New York. He was most recently creative director at Droga5, overseeing Sprint, Johnsonville, and IHOP. He began his career in Los Angeles at David&Goliath where he worked on KIA Motors, California Lottery, NFL Network, Carl’s Jr. and Universal Studios.

AppsFlyer, an attribution and marketing analytics company, appointed Joen van Driel as vice president of sales for Southeast Asia-Pacific (SEAPAC). He has spent the last 17 years based in Hong Kong, Singapore, and the Philippines, working in leadership positions at Oracle, Google Cloud, Adobe, and Starting in February van Driel will be based in AppsFlyer’s SEAPAC hub in Bangkok and will play a key role in driving results and a long-term strategy, the company said.

Communications consultancy The PR Group (PRG Communications) announced three new 2021 client signings. The consultancy has been engaged to support Singapore-based telco challenger to expand into Australia. Global digital customer service leader Zendesk has engaged the firm to support its employee engagement and internal communications across APAC. And working with Singaporean digital agency, First Wave, PRG has been engaged to launch Monopoly Explore! SG, a digital version of Hasbro's game. 

Appnovation, a Vancouver-based consultancy with 16 offices around the world, including a Hong Kong location established in 2016, officially launched in Singapore. Hema Thiagarajah, APAC VP and client partner, will lead business development and overall operations in Singapore. Yvette Yanne is the company's APAC general manager.

Iindependent branding and design agency Hulsbosch appointed Marcel Wijnen as creative director. He has 30 years of experience and was most recently with Marque Branding as creative director. He has also worked at Interbrand in London and Singapore, as well as Blue Marlin in Singapore. Wijnen joins two other recent hires, senior designers Ruth Chapman and Emma Sprouster.

Publicis Groupe appointed former PHD China CEO Anna Chitty as CEO of Starcom China, effective in March. (Full story)

Wunderman Thompson Indonesia announced the recent hires of Adam Thurland as chief strategy officer, Philipp Cerny as executive creative director, Neelakshi Medhi as business director and Nicole Hedemann as integrated content director. Thurland led development of the Google Design Sprint Chapter in Shanghai, and also co-founded in 2020, a solution platform to connect volunteers during the pandemic. Cerny was a founding member of PUNX, a cross-region creative project house, working mostly with Chinese tech platforms, and was recently at the creative helm of the China office of Jung Von Matt. Medhi was previously a brand strategy consultant on brands such as Burger King and Teman Bumil. Hedemann was previously with Wunderman Thompson Hong Kong, where she was promoted from associate creative director to integrated content director.

TotallyAwesome, which describes itself as a forum for kids and brands to safely interact via the internet, has engaged Alice Almeida to develop the business’s APAC data, research and insights portfolio. She will focus on market intelligence and insights to assist teams engaging with clients, as well as working with regulatory bodies to assist in the elevation of youth safety and data-privacy regulations in APAC. Almeida will consult to TotallyAwesome via her independent business, Almeida Insights. Her experience includes senior positions in Australian-based research including Channel Nine, Seven Network, News Corp and Fairfax Media. She is also a former manager of innovation and insights for online market intelligence business Hitwise. She has held representative roles in industry research and measurement organisations and presented research and insight projects at over 60 conferences across APAC.

Chris Maxwell, former Carlton & United Breweries marketing director and founder of its in-house agency, has launched Lution, a marketing, data and technology consultancy focused on helping brands build and optimise in-house agencies. Maxwell believes the move to agency in-housing was transformational for CUB, and intends to champion the model. The co-founders are Nick Garrett, ex-CEO of Clemenger BBDO; Andy Gibson, former global CMO for Foster’s, Bacardi and Walgreens Boots Alliance; and Marty Wirth, founder of independent agency Present Company. Lution’s consultancy services include strategy, planning and implementation of the in-house agency model; martech, adtech and data infrastructure design and implementation; marketing automation and process optimisation; and brand strategy, creative and production services. Founding clients include Betfair, MYOB, MightyCraft, Wanderlust, Jetty Road Brewery, Park SSC and ENGO.

Sandpiper Communications appointed Emily Siu and Lisa Fong as account directors based in its Hong Kong office. Both will work with the senior management team to strengthen the firm’s financial services, corporate, and professional services offerings. Fong specialises in advising global clients in strategic communications, reputation management, and digital strategy. Prior to Sandpiper, she held roles in international agencies including Finsbury and Teneo. She is also the president of BPW Hong Kong and a board member of BPW International, an organisation working for gender equality and empowerment of women. Siu has expertise in strategic communications for the financial and professional services sectors. She was previously a director in FTI Consulting’s strategic communications practice.

VMLY&R Commerce Encompass has been launched in India. The unit, founded after the merger of VMLY&R and Geometry, is a new "creative commerce company” combining the scale of two global commerce agencies. In India, VMLY&R Commerce combines VMLY&R, Geometry and Encompass strengths to scale shopper, retail activation, experiential and rural marketing practices.  With this strategic move, the VMLY&R India operation will now provide clients with a full funnel of services that harness creativity, technology and culture. The shop will focus on building and scaling its rural and retail practice, while it continues to evolve experiential capabilities. Ranjit Raina was appointed as the head of this unit in August last year

The Trade Desk appointed Benson Ho as senior vice president of North Asia. In this role, Ho, who was most recently chief data strategy officer at Tencent Marketing Solution, will lead the company’s business and growth strategy in Greater China, South Korea and Japan. He will report to Tim Sims, chief revenue officer. Prior to Tencent, Ho served as Amnet’s chief consultant and programmatic expert to Dentsu Aegis Network. He has also served in senior leadership positions at Sizmek, GroupM and Digitas. Tencent Marketing Solution was an early inventory partner of The Trade Desk in China. 

Clemenger Group announced that Scott Coldham, managing director of Colenso BBDO since 2015, is leaving the agency to become CMO with New Zealand technology company Whip Around and local menswear brand Asuwere. Clemenger Group is undertaking a global search to replace Coldham, who will depart at the end of April.

Wavemaker appointed Dennis Potgraven, formerly Havas Group's chief strategy officer for Greater China, to the same role in the US. He will be part of the US executive committee and will report to Wavemaker US CEO Amanda Richman. Potgraven has both client- and agency-side experience, including in-house with Nestlé and Ahold-Delhaize.

Whirlpool of India has appointed Lowe Lintas as its marketing and communications partner. KG Singh, vice president of marketing with Whirlpool of India, cited the digital-first approach, powerful insights and compelling brand strategy the agency presented. As the brand's full-service brand communications partner, Lowe Lintas will devise its strategy and build omnichannel creative solutions to fuel Whirlpool's next level of growth, the agency said.  

Finsbury Glover Hering, the newly formed global strategic communications advisory firm, hired China veteran Mei Zhang as a managing director in Hong Kong. Zhang joins after a 25-year career providing professional counsel to international companies, including 11 years at Goldman Sachs in Asia, as an executive director in government affairs, corporate communications and the China Liaison Group. Prior to that she was vice president of corporate communications at Salomon Smith Barney, Citigroup. Other recent hires include Kevin Ma, director, and Helen Tang​, associate director, both based in Beijing. 

Dentsu Malaysia won Setia Group’s media planning and buying services following a pitch. Dentsu has built an integrated team and services capability for Setia group under its agency brand Carat and will be responsible for strategic media planning, integrated media buying and investment strategy for the group's brand and marketing and all of its business units. The appointment is for two years. S P Setia is a property development and investment group.

Indian digital agency Chimp&z appointed Ashish Duggal as vice president for growth and operations. He was previously AVP at Logicserve Digital and has 10 years of experience in digital marketing. He will be working with the co-founders on scaling up the business and boosting operational developments in the agency and the Merge Infinity Global Network to which it belongs. Duggal is a certified sales practitioner for Adobe Experience Cloud products, and is well versed in the Google ecosystem including GCM, DV360, Search 360, AdWords, and other media platforms.

Reckitt Benckiser appointed Blitz Advertising as its media agency in Pakistan following a review that started in September. 


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