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Marketing Featured APAC

Niranjan Singh appointed as Initiative’s new head of communications in APAC

Singapore – Initiative, the media agency under IPG Mediabrands, has appointed Niranjan Singh as its new head of communications in Asia-Pacific. In his new role, he will champion the application of best-practice approaches, techniques and solutions for modern experience design.

In addition, he will drive the connected communications design practice across key clients and sectors for Initiative APAC.

Singh will report to James Smyllie, president of Initiative APAC and is currently based in Mumbai, India prior to transitioning to the Initiative APAC regional headquarters in Singapore. His appointment is effective immediately. 

He has more than 16 years industry experience in strategic media planning and buying, and was previously the head of AOR at Mediacom Indonesia, leading the P&G business for three years.

Prior to that, he spent six years at GroupM, working across leading brands such as Colgate Palmolive, GSK and FrieslandCampina in India and Vietnam.

Speaking on his appointment, Singh said, “I’m thrilled to join Initiative APAC. Initiative’s unique proposition of achieving Cultural Velocity™ in the media-fragmented world to deliver real business growth and success for brands, was the big pull factor for me. I’m super excited to become a part of the team that has been winning Global businesses back-to-back.”

Meanwhile, Smyllie commented, “We are delighted to be attracting talent like Niran to Initiative. This hire reinforces our key focus on enhancing our Craft capabilities across APAC, and driving a consistently world class product throughout the region.”

The new Initiative appointment follows a slew of appointments made by agencies under the IPG Mediabrands company in APAC, namely the appointment of MBCS’ Olivia Warren to its Australia executive team, as well as of Sarah O’Leary and Tom Cumberworth for Initiative’s Rufus, the dedicated media and communications for Amazon.

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Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

PepsiCo appoints Publicis Media as media partner in SEA

Singapore – Global food and beverage company PepsiCo has appointed Publicis Media as its media agency in Southeast Asia. As part of the mandate, Publicis Media has created PLUS+, a bespoke business solution.

PLUS+ is a dedicated business unit, creating an ecosystem of media, creativity, and technology for positive impact on business outcomes. In addition, it unlocks growth in the dynamic marketplace with consumer centric solutions and transformational, data-driven capabilities. 

“The purpose-driven operating model is people-first, with positive shared values underpinning a modern way of working,” the agency further describes it.

Lilly Yip, chief marketing officer at PepsiCo APAC, said, “We would like to thank the incumbent team at Mindshare for their years of work as well as our agency partners that participated in the review. Publicis Media was selected after a very thorough and competitive pitch process. Their expertise in the areas of importance to our business, like data, digital, analytics and commerce saw them emerge as our partner of choice.”

Meanwhile, Amrita Randhawa, CEO of Publicis Groupe Singapore and Southeast Asia, commented, “We are excited to be appointed PepsiCo’s media partner in this very dynamic and fast-growing region. We really respect the process that PepsiCo ran for its thoroughness and desire to discover the best from the agencies participating. Our entire team is incredibly motivated by the opportunity to create industry-leading work for these iconic brands in the future.” 

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Marketing Featured ANZ

Accolade Wines appoints Havas Media Melbourne as media agency

Melbourne, Australia – Winemaking company Accolade Wines has appointed Havas Media Melbourne as its media agency, and will be managing its wine brands such as Grant Burge, Hardys, Petaluma, St Hallett, Croser, Houghton, Jam Shed and Yarra Burn.

The scope of work covers media strategy, planning and buying across the entire portfolio of brands and includes planning and buying for global campaigns off the back of early exceptional results from the agency.

Jack Glover, marketing director at Accolade Wines, said, “As we continue to stretch our marketing and digital capability at Accolade Wines, it was vital that we found a strategic media partner who intrinsically understands the complexity of today’s media market.” 

He added, “We were impressed by Havas’s ability to apply our own category insights with their audience and market expertise and tools to deliver unique and forward-thinking strategic solutions. We are incredibly excited about this partnership and look forward to delivering some game-changing campaigns with the team at Havas Media.”

Meanwhile, Naomi Johnston, general manager at Havas Media Melbourne, commented, “We’re incredibly thrilled to be working with Accolade. From day one of the pitch process, we were blown away by the thorough briefing process and collaborative approach to planning led by a clearly very talented marketing team. Since being appointed we’ve felt very much the trusted partner whose experience and expertise in the category has been incredibly valued.”

She added, “We’re looking forward to a long and collaborative partnership, delivering great business results across Accolade’s prestigious portfolio of brands both locally and internationally.”

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Marketing Featured South Asia

Carat India bags media mandate for Croma

India — Carat, the media agency from dentsu India, has bagged the media mandate for Croma, an Indian retail chain of consumer electronics and durables from the house of Infiniti Retail. The account was won following a multi-agency pitch and will be serviced from the agency’s Mumbai office.

As per the mandate, Carat India will oversee the brand’s media planning and buying rights – including traditional and digital. The agency will also partner with the larger teams at dentsu India to drive the full-funnel marketing needs of the client, further driving outcome-based solutions for the next phase of their exponential growth, keeping customers at the core of its planning and execution.

Commenting on the win, Anita Kotwani, CEO of Carat India, said, “We are backed by a consumer understanding proprietary framework, Designing for People, which is strong and always relevant. It is inspired by design thinking which enables us to help brands with an in-depth understanding of their consumers.”

She adds, “Our single-source consumer-connected system is the key differentiator in the Indian market. It has the ability to drive full-funnel client outcomes. Our ability to stay ahead of the curve in the tools and tech space by showcasing a unified holistic view of the consumers has been a key tenet that helped us clinch the business.”

Meanwhile, Shibashish Roy, chief business officer of ecommerce and marketing for Croma – Infiniti Retail, commented that they are expanding their presence in India by strengthening their omnichannel proposition with digital initiatives and aggressive store expansion plans. Roy adds that they’re looking forward to working with Carat India as their media planning partner to build on the Croma brand further.

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Marketing Featured South Asia

ŠKODA AUTO India taps PHD to boost Facebook campaigns

Mumbai India — With increased competition across dominant social platforms like Facebook, resulting in a higher cost per lead (CPL), automotive brand ŠKODA AUTO India tapped PHD – its media agency partner and part of the Omnicom Media Group network – to optimize campaign efficiencies and generate a higher number of average daily leads at reduced CPL from its Facebook campaigns.

ŠKODA AUTO hoped to reach a broader and more profiled set of audiences via Facebook – car owners, first-time car buyers and enthusiasts alike, to generate qualified leads that can be converted down the consumer journey. The automotive brand faced a challenge with its objective of optimizing performance in terms of cost per lead efficiently. Manoeuvring on Lifetime Budgets at CBO instead of Daily Budgets at ABO was a hurdle it was looking to overcome whilst optimizing daily lead count and maintaining scale.

To streamline efficiencies across campaigns, the two companies collaborated with Pixis – whose powerful AI infrastructure helps make marketing effortlessly intelligent, agile and scalable for brands. Pixis deployed its Governance AI system, which uses AI models trained with billions of data points to allocate the bid budget on a daily basis dynamically.

With its data-driven recommendations, Pixis’ AI supported PHD Media in delivering sharper results on ŠKODA AUTO’s KPIs – helping the auto brand make the leap in its performance marketing campaigns. Upon implementing the recommendations to optimize lead generation, ŠKODA AUTO India was able to reach the desired high-quality audiences at the right time.

The results outperformed the quality of leads coming into the system, increased savings in terms of prospects, increased the average daily leads by nearly 17% for ŠKODA Superb and improved the CPL by approximately 10%. Similarly, the campaign around ŠKODA’s avant-garde Octavia also gained a 28% increase in average daily leads with Pixis’ AI infrastructure helping scale the campaign by almost 25%.

Speaking of the collaboration, Bharat Khatri, chief digital officer for Omnicom Media Group APAC, said, “With innovation and creativity at its core, PHD Media believes that the key to a cookie-less future lies in leveraging the right technology stack and interpreting a combination of different approaches to support all the key tasks around audience selection, targeting, governance, personalization, and most importantly, measurement.”

Khatri added, “With Pixis’ AI, we were able to bring down our acquisition cost drastically while maintaining scale. Pixis’ easy-to-use AI plugin helped our team deploy advanced people-powered, supervised AI and ML models that improved our cost per lead by 10% and also increased average daily leads volume by 17%.”

Meanwhile, Tarun Jha, head of marketing for ŠKODA AUTO India, shared, “With an infinite number of customer touchpoints today, reaching out to the right people at the right time remains imperative. We’re pleased with the campaign results and look forward to exploring more such opportunities with Pixis, guided by the counsel of our partners – PHD Media.”

Speaking on the collaboration, Neel Pandya, CEO of Pixis for Europe APAC, said, “We’re extremely happy to see how PHD Media leveraged the Pixis AI infrastructure to garner incredible performance on ŠKODA AUTO’s latest marketing campaigns. It’s a moment of true excitement and honour to continue working with PHD to facilitate greater business growth for ŠKODA, and other clients, through our AI systems.”

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Marketing Featured South Asia

Madison Media appoints Vinit Kumar as vice president of Madison Media Plus

Mumbai, India — Media agency Madison Media has appointed Vinit Kumar as vice president of Madison Media Plus, which is based in Delhi. Kumar will report to Abhik Banerjee, COO of Madison Media Plus.

A seasoned professional, Kumar has over 16 years of experience in all facets of media ranging from integrated marketing communications, strategy, digital marketing and analytics. Prior to joining Madison, he worked with Zenith Media, Mindshare, Lintas Media Group and HCL. This will be his second stint with Madison, where previously, he was a general manager in the agency’s Delhi and Kolkata office handling ITC.

On Kumar’s appointment, Banerjee commented, “We’re glad to have Vinit back on board. Having worked for various FMCG segments, he brings a wealth of experience to Madison. I am confident that we will be able to take our Delhi office to the next level with new business and continue to delight the existing clients.”

On joining Madison Media for the second time, Kumar said, “I am excited to be joining Madison Media back and look forward to contributing to the organization in my new role and responsibilities.”

Kumar added, “My hopes and expectations are high as I look forward to the challenges and opportunities Madison Media and its clients will provide me and unlock our clients’ growth by leveraging data, tech and talent.”

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Marketing Featured ANZ

Nunn Media bags Australian Forest Products Association’s account

Sydney, Australia – Media agency Nunn Media has been appointed by the Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA), following the AFPA recently launching a new campaign calling for one billion trees to be planted by 2030.

The AFPA is a peak national body representing the resources, processing, pulp, paper and bioproduct industries across the forest products value chain.

Chris Walton, managing director of Nunn Media Sydney, said, “We have started the year as we finished 2021 with a number of new business wins on the back of sustained investment in our people and products, and being able to demonstrate clear business returns off the back of growing marketing investments by ambitious brands.”

Nunn Media has also won accounts of Anker, a high-end charging and innovator of smart devices for entertainment, travel and smart homes; and Harley Heaven, the leading Harley Davidson dealership network in Australia.

In February Nunn Media Sydney announced it had made five new hires across account management and planning as a result of new business wins, including Silversea Cruises and global children’s entertainment company Spin Master for its portfolio of brands including Bakugan, PAW Patrol, Hatchimals, Kinetic Sand and Air Hogs. 

In October last year, Nunn acquired fast-growing performance agency, Alley Group, further boosting its capabilities across search, social, programmatic, e-commerce and digital creative.

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Marketing Featured East Asia

PHD appointed as World Gold Council China’s media agency

Shanghai, China – Media agency PHD has been appointed by World Gold Council China to hold its media mandate. Through it, the agency will drive media strategy, planning and buying duties to elevate the association’s brand awareness and encourage gold investment and gold jewellery consumption in the market.

PHD China clinched the account by displaying a deep understanding of the association’s high-net-worth consumers. The agency’s strategic approach to deliver business results through digital and data-led expertise impressed the association.

A spokesperson from World Gold Council China shared, “The association is committed to play an active role in the gold market and to explore more acquisition channels, promote innovation and gold consumption with various partners. PHD’s approach not only focused on media planning, but they also provided a plan for the association to effectively educate consumers about the gold industry.”

Meanwhile, Joey Zhao, CEO of PHD China, commented, “While individual brands usually focus on their own products and image, the World Gold Council allows us an opportunity to promote gold jewellery and investment from the perspective of the industry.”

He added, “Our team has extensive experience in global media marketing and we will create a media strategy for the association in the new digital era, to further help consumers expand their knowledge and awareness of the gold industry.”

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Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Omnicom Media Group appointed as media agency of record of Angkas

Manila, Philippines – Omnicom Media Group has been appointed the media agency of record of Angkas, the Philippine-based motorcycle ride-sharing service. The appointment follows after Angkas decided to go with an agency that can provide relevance and creativity while pushing the envelope of innovation further.

George Royeca, chief executive officer at Angkas, said, “We chose OMG as our media AOR as they have successfully shown innovative thinking, strong media capabilities, and transparency which we truly value. We are excited to see how this partnership can further drive Angkas’ goals this 2022.”

Meanwhile, Mary Buenaventura, CEO and president at OMG, commented, “We are thrilled to be given the chance to work with a progressive brand who is a pioneer in its category.”

She also added that Angkas is a trailblazer that promotes a win-win situation for both the company and its riders, “not only in providing a transportation option to commuters but also in providing livelihoods for Filipinos.”

Founded in 2016, Angkas has also ventured into the package delivery scene, and has a large presence in Metro Manila, Cebu, Cagayan de Oro, and General Santos City. There are also plans for Angkas to eye provincial expansion in the Philippines, including in Batangas.

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Marketing Featured ANZ

Initiative adds Australian Unity to client roster

Melbourne, Australia – Local media agency Initiative has announced that it is adding member-owned wellbeing company Australian Unity to its growing client roster. In the new account win, Initiative will lead strategy and all media campaign activity, tasked with delivering sustainable business growth by expanding Australian Unity’s member and customer base.

The agency’s work commences March 1 with the first campaign expected to roll out by Q2 of 2022.

According to Sarah James, managing director at Initiative Melbourne, her team were delighted to work with Australian Unity, a brand with a long and proud history in Australia of supporting Australians’ wellbeing.

“We’ve had our eye on this brand for some time, they may have been around for more than 180 years but they’re a progressive and ambitious business who aren’t shy of backing brave brand thinking. This fits perfectly with Initiative’s brand spirit; we’re excited to be their agency partner and support their ambition of being the most trusted wellbeing company in Australia,” James stated.

Meanwhile, Kellie Johnston, chief marketing officer at Australian Unity, commented that they were very impressed with Initiative’s excellent understanding of their business; as well as the agency’s creativity, fluency in technology and strong effectiveness record.

“Initiative’s passion for achieving results through open and collaborative partnerships is perfectly aligned to our business. There is also a clear cultural fit and a shared business ethos that is important to us. I’m very pleased to welcome Initiative to our team,” Johnston said.