After AdNews revealed Mat Baxter’s move to New York yesterday and tipped Ross Raeburn as his successor, IPG Mediabrands has now confirmed that Baxter will relocate to take on the role of global chief strategy and creative officer for IPG Mediabrands.
Former-Soap MD Ross Raeburn will take on the top spot as CEO of UM Austrlaia effective today (3 September). IPG Mediabrands’ worldwide CEO Henry Tajer confirmed the two appointments in a statement overnight.
Baxter will relocate to New York shortly - a much speculated move for the prominent Australian media man.
Raeburn joined IPG in July in a role of commercial director after spending five years as the MD of digital and gaming shop Soap.
Tajer said in a statement: “Mat Baxter is a unique executive. I cannot name a more effective strategic thinker who is so totally focused on driving the best possible results for clients. The fact is that Mat has already positively impacted the performance of our business at the international level and on major clients. His new position in New York is a global platform for his talents and I am looking forward to working with him in our senior management team.
“In Ross Raeburn we have the ideal leader for the next phase of UM Australia’s industry leadership. We had been waiting to bring Ross into the Australia group in a top leadership position and his new role leading UM is exactly the right match for our client and media partnerships, as well as the skill sets and future evolution of the media industry.”
Raeburn said: "It's an exciting time to be in our industry. Thanks to digital, the opportunities for brands are now infinite. With infinite opportunities, clients need trusted, smart and collaborative partners. The UM team already possess the most essential element, a passion to challenge the norm and dogged determination to create influential connections across all channels. I am looking forward to contributing and spending time with the team and our clients into the future."
In Baxter’s five years as CEO of UM, clients such as Coca-Cola, Lego, News Corp and ING Direct have all joined the roster and the agency has almost doubled in headcount. Baxter most recently overhauled the agency’s vision and approach shifting away from describing itself as a media agency to being a “connections agency”.
Just this week UM Sydney was named the best place to work on BRW’s annual list of employers under 100 people.
UM is currently AdNews’ Media Network of the Year and Soap is Digital Agency of the Year. UM Australia also picked up the Global Media Agency of the Year accolade at the Festival of Media Global last year and Asia-Pacific Media Agency of the Year at Festival of Media Asia.
Baxter said: “This is a dream job for me. IPG Mediabrands is engineering a major transformation right now. A big part of that transformation is about recalibrating our product for the new world of marketing and ensuring we foster a world-class creative culture. I’m hugely excited to be working alongside so many talented people in our network to make sure that happens.”
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