Movers & Shakers: Whatsapp, Publicis, Isobar

By AdNews | 4 May 2018

Check out the biggest moves in adland this week.

Jane Young appointed GM of Publicis in Queensland

Jane Young has been appointed GM of Publicis in Queensland. Young joined the agency in July last year as client services director and has since restructured and expanded the client service team to "match evolving client needs in creative and integrated communications". She has more than 15 years’ experience in the UK, New Zealand and Australia and prior to joining Publicis she was GM of Ogilvy Queensland. Her appointment comes off the back of a recent period of growth for the agency after client wins including Queensland Health, Cross River Rail and The Local Government Association of Queensland, as well as strong client growth with Suncorp. Read more.

Whatsapp founder quits Facebook

Whatsapp co-founder and CEO Jan Koum is leaving Facebook. The move follows disputes over recent privacy issues within the company. Koum posted on Facebook, stating that after close to a decade since he and partner Brian Acton started Whatsapp, it was time for him to move on. "I’m leaving at a time when people are using Whatsapp in more ways than I could have imagined. The team is stronger than ever and it’ll continue to do amazing things. I’m taking some time off to do things I enjoy outside of technology, such as collecting rare air-cooled Porsches, working on my cars and playing ultimate frisbee. "And I’ll still be cheering Whatsapp on – just from the outside. Thanks to everyone who has made this journey possible," he said in his post. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg commented underneath the post and said he would miss working with Koum and wished him well. Read more. 

Isobar gets a new ECD

Soap has been merged into Isobar three years after its acquisition by Dentsu Aegis Network. As a result, the Soap name has been dropped and co-founder Brad Eldridge will become Isobar ECD of the now 300-strong national staff. The position was held by ECD Dave Budge who left last month and is now carrying out freelance work. Other Soap co-founder, Ashley Ringrose, will lead Soap’s gaming studio, SMG, which will remain a separate brand with the 20+ staff remaining in its Ultimo offices. Read more.

Showdown appoints former Sony MD to chairman role

Video games and entertainment media publisher Showdown has appointed Michael Ephraim as the company's chairman. Ephraim will be responsible for driving the growth and strategic direction of the Showdown business, as well as the company’s esports division, Throwdown. He will also manage Showdown’s exclusive ANZ distribution partnership with Twitch, the global video platform and community for gamers. Previously the MD and VP of Sony Interactive Entertainment for Australia and New Zealand, Ephraim has been had almost 30 year's experience. Showdown MD Scott Wenkart said Ephraim was joining the team at an important time, just as Showdown’s esports division, Throwdown, is about to announce the expansion of its leagues. Read more.

Former SCA direct joins Carat Melbourne

Carat Melbourne has appointed Janine Virtue as the new client lead on the Medibank & ahm accounts, following nearly 15 years with Southern Cross Austereo. Virtue will take the lead on Australia’s largest health insurance provider, as well as oversee recently acquired client, National Hearing Care – a portfolio worth in excess of $45m. She joins Carat from her role as agency sales director at SCA. Carat Melbourne MD Joseph Pardillo said Virtue’s appointment came down to her commercial acumen and proven track record in market.

UnLtd announces Melbourne Board: Wade James appointed as chair

UnLtd has launched a Melbourne Board to drive social impact in Victoria. The Melbourne Board is tasked with galvanising the media, marketing and creative industry in Victoria to help UnLtd achieve its goal of generating $100m in social impact by 2021 to help young people at risk. The Board has appointed Wade James from oOh! Media as the chair. Further members join from companies including Google, Telaria, Yahoo7, Starcom,PHD and Taska Media.

Enero Group appoints David Brain as an independent non-executive director

Enero Group has appointed David Brain as an independent non-executive director. Brain was most recently a director of the group supervisory board of Edelman and a member of its global management board. During thirteen years at Edelman, he was CEO of the Europe Middle East & Africa (EMEA) region and latterly, CEO of Asia Pacific Middle East & Africa (APACMEA). Prior to Edelman, David was co-CEO of Weber-Shandwick UK and MD at Burson-Marsteller UK. He has also worked in Corporate Affairs at Visa International and as a planner in advertising.

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