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Colvyn Harris becomes JWT South Asia CEO; given added charge of Contract Advtg

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Colvyn Harris becomes JWT South Asia CEO; given added charge of Contract Advtg

Reflecting Asia’s growing global importance and JWT’s commitment to the region’s diverse and vibrant markets, JWT Worldwide Chairman and CEO Bob Jeffrey announced a leadership restructure. JWT’s North Asia Area Director and Greater China CEO Tom Doctoroff and JWT India CEO Colvyn Harris will succeed Michael Maedel in the restructured region.

Doctoroff will take on the role of CEO, JWT Asia Pacific (APAC) at the end of this year. In this role, he will oversee Northeast and Southeast Asia, as well as Pakistan, Australia and New Zealand.

Harris will become South Asia CEO (India, Sri Lanka and Nepal) and take on added responsibilities of JWT’s Indian companies, including Contract Advertising, Hungama Digital Services, JWT Mindset and Encompass. Doctoroff and Harris will report to Jeffrey.

Maedel, who has spent 40 years in the industry and 22 years in leadership roles at JWT, including eight as President of Asia Pacific, will move into the role of Non-Executive Chairman for Asia.

“Tom and Colvyn are both dynamic leaders with strong connections to the markets, the consumers and the clients. By leveraging the strengths and strategic insights of these two very talented people, JWT is uniquely positioned to maximise growth in this critical and dynamic region,” said Jeffrey.

The restructuring reflects a renewed focus on India by JWT Worldwide. Harris, who has 33 years at JWT, continues to lead the agency as CEO South Asia. He has held various industry leadership roles, including President of the Advertising Agencies Association of India, and has addressed global audiences as a speaker at the World Economic Forum, London Business School and The Wharton School.

Commenting on his new role, Harris said, “We will continue to build and acquire the most diversified platforms to deliver on the market ambitions of the clients we service, thereby further consolidating our leadership position. Brands are the centre of our focus, and with our skills and capabilities we deliver marketing solutions across the most diverse of offerings to meet the challenges of the dynamic markets we operate in.”

He added that this new development ensures that their clients continue to have greater access to the best of services and talent, not only in the country, but across South Asia.

These changes come at a time when JWT APAC, which has an 83-year history in Asia, continues to gather greater momentum. JWT APAC has set multiple benchmarks, bringing home first-time Cannes Grand Prix Lions for Malaysia in 2004, India in 2008, Japan in 2009 and, most recently, China in 2011. The company has also deepened the scope and scale of the services it offers in the market, from digital to shopper marketing, through organic growth and acquisitions.

“I am very excited to build on JWT’s past accomplishments across Asia Pacific,” said Doctoroff. “We are in the midst of a revolution of consumer empowerment and I look forward to working with client partners in this fast-changing region to find new synergies between classic brand building and next-stage consumer engagement in the digital era,” he added.

Under Doctoroff leadership, JWT North Asia has diversified into customer relationship marketing, field marketing, promotion network management and digital engagement. Doctoroff joined JWT in 1992, moved to Hong Kong in 1994, and became the Managing Director of JWT Shanghai in 1998. In 2002, he was appointed Greater China CEO and Northeast Asia Area Director, a remit that included Korea, China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Japan came under his purview in 2008, when Doctoroff assumed the role of North Asia Area Director.

Advisory role for Maedel

Maedel, who will remain in Singapore, will work with Doctoroff and Harris in an advisory role until he retires in 2014.

Looking back at his career, Maedel commented, “I’ve had the real pleasure of charting a course for our company in some of the world’s most dynamic regions through periods which have seen our industry go through some pretty seismic changes. I’ve also been privileged to work with some of the most talented people around the world.

“Michael’s exceptional leadership skills have cemented JWT’s reputation as a leader in both, strategy and creativity in every region he managed, from Europe to Asia. The creative and commercial success that JWT APAC has enjoyed bears testament to his leadership,” said Jeffrey.

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