Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – Nizwani Shahar, most recently the chief executive officer of Ogilvy Malaysia, has been appointed as the new chief executive officer of Havas Malaysia. Shahar takes over from Andrew Lee, the current managing director for the group as he departs the agency following an early retirement.
In her new role, she will lead Havas Malaysia through a transformative journey of exponential growth. Her primary focus will be on fostering collaboration and partnerships, driving new business momentum, and building and leading future-ready teams.
The appointment is effective immediately, and she will report directly to Alberto Canteli, CEO and chairman of Havas, Nordics, CEE & Middle East, SEA, Korea & Japan.
She brings with her a wealth of experience, having spent 12 years at Ogilvy Malaysia and serving as their CEO for 4 years. Throughout her career, she has demonstrated a remarkable ability to build strong brands and effectively integrate businesses and capabilities. Additionally, she is a staunch advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusivity, with a track record of driving profitability and talent retention.
Speaking on her new role, Shahar said, “Havas’ approach to integration sets it apart, and one of the primary reasons I chose to join this agency is its exceptional model supported by a high level of integration and robust digital capabilities. Moreover, the inspiring leadership at the helm, dedicated to realizing the vision of a truly integrated agency, further resonated with me. I’m truly excited to take on the new challenge and look forward to working with the team.”
Meanwhile, Canteli commented, “I would like to thank Andrew for his contribution to our Malaysia operations and wish him the very best for his future endeavors. He has played a pivotal role in driving and expanding our creative business in Malaysia.”
He added, “Nizwani’s extensive experience and proven commercial acumen and ability to foster business growth makes her a natural choice for the leadership role, and I am certain that under her leadership, we will further consolidate and strengthen our foothold in this important market.”
Lastly, Lee said, “It has been a privilege working with the team during an important period of transformation and growth. I am confident under the leadership of Nizwani, the agency will continue to drive growth and achieve success.”