Staff Reporters
Mar 13, 2023

Move and win roundup: Week of March 13, 2023

The latest updates from M&C Saatchi, Iris, HubSpot, Wunderman Thompson, VMLY&R, PubMatic, RGA, UM, TBWA and more in our weekly roundup of people moves and business wins.

Campaign compiles a new 'Move, launch and win roundup' as each week progresses. 
This edition will cover March 13 through March 17, 2023. 
Catch up on past people moves and business wins

BMW China has appointed Havas Creative Group China as its social media leading agency, immediately effective, following a competitive pitch. Havas Creative China will be responsible for upping BMW’s brand awareness, stickiness and loyalty, as well as expanding their domestic voicing, popularity, and positioning via outstanding creative works. Havas acquired an independent advertising agency Front Networks, in China last March and integrated it into Havas Creative. Front Networks excels in digital marketing and serves international brands, including BMW.

After being shrouded with layoff news for months and scores of SEA employees taking to LinkedIn about their plight, Foodpanda has appointed Anna Znamenskaya as the new chief marketing officer. In the current role, Znamenskaya will be based in Singapore and lead brand, performance marketing and growth teams in 11 markets across Asia-Pacific. She comes with over ten years of industry experience with tech firms like Apple and Viber where she has overseen global marketing, product growth, business development, public relations, and analytics functions. At Apple, she was the country manager for Apple Services for Eurasia region. 

Dentsu announced the creation of a new cluster for Southeast Asia and has appointed a team of veteran industry leaders to lead the fast-growing market for the network in APAC. The newly formed SEA cluster will include Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

  • Sanjay Bhasin, CEO of Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam is promoted to CEO Southeast Asia.
  • Prakash Kamdar, CEO of Singapore and Indonesia is promoted to CEO, Clients & Solutions Southeast Asia.
  • Bharti Agrawal​ is CFO, Southeast Asia.

South China Morning Post has appointed Sophia Yu as managing director of SCMP Hearst, effective from April 1. Yu succeeds Josephine Chan, who has made the decision to step down for family reasons. Under Chan’s leadership, SCMP Hearst has grown to operate five lifestyle media brands in Hong Kong, including Cosmopolitan, Elle, Harper's Bazaar, Esquire, and Elle Men, reaching 7.5 million readers every month across print, digital and social platforms.

Edelman Global Advisory (EGA), a boutique firm providing government affairs and business advisory services, announced its expansion in capabilities and geographic reach through the acquisition of Landmark Public Affairs (Landmark), a global public affairs and strategic communications agency. Based in Singapore, Richard Andrew, Landmark’s managing director for Asia, will serve as EGA co-chair of APAC.

Audacia announced its partnership with AdsWizz in marketplace ad inventory across streaming and podcasts in Asia. AdsWizz’s audio advertising technology combined with Audacia’s expertise in the JAPAC market will streamline podcast, music, and gaming inventory connections.

Geylang International Football Club (GIFC) announced its partnership with Redhill, a full-service global communications agency, as the main sponsor to support its Women's Premier League team. This collaboration aims to boost the visibility of women's football in Singapore.

The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) has extended the partnership with M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment as the AOC’s official creative agency for a further three years, following a four-year partnership.  AOC’s ‘Have A Go’ campaign for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, led by M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment, aims to inspire Australians of all ages to ‘Have A Go’. The agency will continue to develop and evolve the campaign as the AOC prepares for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Iris Singapore has appointed Khoon Kiat Liong as creative director and head of art. Liong will report to Cristina ‘Tin’ Sanchez, executive creative director at Iris Singapore. Prior to Iris, he was creative director at Publicis Singapore. With over 15 years at network agencies in Singapore, Malaysia, and China, he has handled brands like Tiger Beer, Dove, Lee, CloseUp Toothpaste, Omo & Breeze, and the Health Promotion Board.

HubSpot has appointed Dan Bognar as vice president of sales and managing director for the JAPAC region. Bognar joins HubSpot with more than three decades of technology sales, business consulting and leadership experience, as he worked for Salesforce and DocuSign.
He will work to drive business growth, in partnership with HubSpot’s JAPAC leadership in marketing, sales and services, and leadHubSpot’s Sales organisation.   

Jake Challenor launched Sound Story, a strategic public relations and communications agency backed by UNIFIED Investments. Joining the Sound Story team alongside Challenor are Brian Lawlor, general manager, and Zanda Wilson, senior communications specialist, with offices in both Sydney and Melbourne. Challenor was the former publisher of the Music Network and Radio Today and founding executive editor of Variety Australia.

Wunderman Thompson South Asia has promoted Raji Ramaswamy to chief growth officer and Joy Chauhan to chief client officer respectively. Their new roles will see them lead strategic growth for the group with a focus on new business and key clients across the region, including oversight of client retention and business development, nurturing the teams of talent, and playing cross-agency roles in driving strategic growth initiatives like the development of new client services and capabilities.

VMLY&R Malaysia has hired Didi Pirinyuang as chief creative officer. In her new role, Pirinyuang will lead the agency’s creative team in delivering best-in-class solutions for clients, sharpening its creative culture and driving its strategy to boost the agency’s creative service offerings. She will report to Kenni Loh, chief executive officer, VMLY&R Malaysia. Most recently, Pirinyuang was executive creative director for Ensemble Global, Malaysia.

Index Exchange has promoted Janette Higginson to vice president of buyer development in Asia Pacific. Higginson joined Index Exchange in 2017 as one of the company’s first-ever employees in APAC, tasked with developing Index’s buy-side business, establishing the company’s reputation, and building the Sydney office from the ground up. In her new role, Higginson will be responsible for leading a high-impact sales team that focuses on driving collaboration and partnerships with media buyers, agencies, trading desks, and marketers across the region.

Redhill has appointed Diana Pong as managing director of its Australia operation. Pong will focus on driving local market expertise and cross-market collaboration to devise broader capabilities for Redhill’s clients in Australia and across the APAC region. Prior, she served as APAC communications lead at Thrive PR, where her duties included expanding Thrive’s footprint in Asia.

Enigma has won the strategy and creative business for the global equipment manufacturer New Holland across Australia and New Zealand. This is an expansion of Enigma's existing remit as media agency for New Holland in Australia. As the agency of record, Enigma’s responsibilities include media buying across all Australian national and local broadcast media buying (print, outdoor, radio, cinema, digital, search, social and addressable); plus all strategy, creative and production services and executions in both Australia and New Zealand.

PubMatic has promoted Singapore-based Emily Yri to the position of VP for international marketing. She was formerly the senior director of marketing for APAC. Yri will stay in Singapore and will add Europe and the Middle East to her remit.

RGA Singapore has won the account of KFC in Singapore as the new creative agency partner, following a competitive pitch called at the start of the year. Incumbent The Secret Little Agency (TSLA) will remain on the roster, along with Havas Singapore which handles media buying, and Arena Media for social, and Ninemer for PR responsibilities. The pitch process was announced less than a month after Johnson Yohannan took over as general manager/head of KFC Singapore in December, 2022. 

Media agency UM Australia has hired Andy Copeland to the newly created role of general manager, Brisbane. Copeland brings an extensive business strategy and revenue growth experience to UM. He joins the leadership team, and will report directly to Australia CEO Anathea Ruys.

TBWA Sydney has elevated Sebastian Revell to head of strategy to lead the direction and output of TBWA Sydney’s strategy department across all disciplines, including brand, social and connections strategy. Revell joined the agency in 2019 and moved to the group strategy director role in 2021 where he was leading strategy for Tourism New Zealand and Hort Innovation at the agency. The agency is expanding the strategy department with other hires:

  • Alexandra Nel joins from Leo Burnett as connections strategy director. He will oversee the development and integration of connections strategy in the new role.
  • Callum James and Olivia Cham join as senior strategist and strategist, respectively. James is an RGA alum and was previously insights lead at Big Red, whilst Cham relocates from Singapore where she has worked in social, digital and brand strategy at The Secret Little Agency.

WPP's Christina and Justin Peyton are relocating to US to take on global roles within the the group. Campaign Asia-Pacific can reveal that Christina Peyton will take on the new role as vice president of Health and report directly to Wendy Lund, chief client officer of Health at WPP.
Meanwhile, husband Justin Peyton, the APAC chief transformational officer at Wunderman Thompson, transfers to take on the new global head of strategy role for WPP’s Microsoft business. Read all the details here

Communications agency Sling & Stone has been appointed as the agency of record for New Zealand startup Tracksuit across AUNZ. As part of the partnership, Sling & Stone further Tracksuit’s presence, positioning and engagement levels in the market. Sling & Stones other recent wins include Avarni, MGA Thermal, Neara and Krispy Kreme. 

Campaign Asia

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