Tokyo, Japan – Global advertising agency R/GA in Tokyo has appointed Kei Shimada, former associate partner and founding member and leader of the Digital Makers Lab at IBM Tokyo, to be its new managing director, effective this month. The appointment aims to expand R/GA’s presence in the Asia-Pacific region.
Shimada will now be responsible for leading the Tokyo office to drive innovation, human-centric work for the company’s local and international clients. He will be tapping into the agency’s deep creativity, tech, and design experience expertise, and will work closely with other regional leads in support of helping clients create a more human future.
Prior to his new role, Shimada has had a long-standing career of helping companies around the globe. He specializes in redefining existing product and service strategies, and enhancing existing revenue streams, or creating new ones from the ground up. At Digital Makers Lab, IBM Japan’s business-to-business (B2B) workshop, Shimada led the digital transformation of clients and spearheaded the creation of world-first, region-first, and industry-first focused solutions, and business models.
Furthermore, Shimada has worked as the global director of innovation and business development at Dentsu, where he focused on the build-out of dentsu Aegis’, now called as denstu international’s, group wide innovation initiative that created new solutions around wearables, neural technology, locational big data, and crisis management infrastructures. He has also fulfilled the role of chief lab officer of dXLab, dentsu media’s innovation lab spanning eight countries in Southeast Asia, including Thailand, Indonesia, and the Philippines.
Commenting on his appointment, Shimada said that he is excited to be given the opportunity to join R/GA and lead the Tokyo office. He believes that having such an eclectic mix of people working together serving local and global clients is something very unique in Japan, and one gives them a strong competitive advantage.
“I’m looking forward to further shaping and growing the Tokyo office as we deliver transformative solutions for clients that play at the intersection of bold ambition, creativity, and human truths,” commented Shimada.
Meanwhile, Tuomas Peltoniemi, the EVP and managing director of R/GA APAC, shared, “It’s exciting to have a respected, inventive, and influential leader like Kei onboard. With an ambition to leverage new technologies to help clients create new solutions for a more human future, coupled with an incredible track record of commercial and creative success, there’s no one else better to be at the helm of R/GA Tokyo.”
Shimada’s appointment completes the newly-formed Tokyo leadership team that is poised to work with Japanese and global brands, enabling growth both locally and internationally.