Anthony Ellis and 20 years at Publicis

Chris Pash
By Chris Pash | 31 March 2021
Anthony Ellis

Anthony Ellis, the managing director of Publicis Media Exchange in Australia, just celebrated 20 years with the group, seeing challenges and opportunity ahead.

He moved in July last year from chief investment officer at Zenith to replace Sarah Keith at Publicis Media Exchange.

Ellis, who grew up at Leeton in the Riverina region of southern New South Wales, started at George Patterson Bates in 1997 in North Sydney.

“That was just before just before media split out from the creative agencies,” he told AdNews.

“I had no idea. I didn't really know what media really was. I've got to admit, I thought I was coming into a marketing job.

“Back in those days you had to know somebody to get into advertising. I got a recommendation through a friend of a friend.”

He was interviewed by Peter Cornelius, the then managing director and currently head of Ebiquity Australia.

“I moved to Sydney and then was desperately trying to get a connection into a marketing job and I ended up in media," he says.

“One of the things that's kept me here is that we work in such a dynamic industry. It's not set in stone and every day is different.

“And we've got a lot of great people that work across all agencies.”

He sees creativity in the way client challenges are solved as a key to media.

“One of the attractions in the role that I'm currently in is how we connect and create a group, a growth platform, to solve our client challenges.

This combines two things. One is working with great people, allowing me to learn and grow after plus 20 years in the place. And the other is still having what I love, and that is solving client problems.

“The challenge and the opportunity for me has continued to change. I've worked with some great people and I’m being challenged and continue to grow.”

He also enjoys the opportunity to coach others. “When you can see people stand up -- and it might be a presentation -- where they've really struggled in the past and you know they're well out of their comfort zone -- and they really deliver, and you can see the delight in their eyes and how proud they are themselves. That is really satisfying.”

Ellis says he’s been fortunate enough to have some really good mentors and managers during his career.

“The future looks like a pretty rosy one for me. I'm pretty optimistic that there's still a lot of learning for me to do,” he says.

“We work in a dynamic industry and we've got a lot of amazing people in it.

“It only takes a conversation with a couple of my friends who work outside, especially some of the blokes that are still running a farm, to realise what a great industry we have.”


Publicis Media Exchange team with Anthony Ellis. 

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