Marketing Featured ANZ

Red Havas Australia reshapes leadership team

Australia – Red Havas in Australia has reshaped its leadership team to reflect local opportunities and its global focus on key growth areas; health and wellness, corporate PR and reputation management, technology and e-commerce, consumer, and lifestyle, automotive and mobility, travel and hospitality and employee engagement.

Simone Gupta, CEO at Havas PR Australia, and leading Red Havas, Havas Blvd, One Green Bean and Organic, will continue in her role and report into James Wright, global CEO at Red Havas, and global chairman of the Havas PR Global Collective.

Meanwhile, current Red Havas Managing Director, Steve Fontanot, will take up a new role, commercial managing director for APAC that will include M&A and commercial partnerships. He will support the Havas APAC leadership team on strengthening the PR offering in the region. Steve will continue his role as managing director of Havas Blvd.

Other promotions include Kate Smailes, current executive director at Havas Blvd promoted to managing partner at Havas Blvd and chief client officer; Alex Bryant, current executive director at Sydney PR promoted to managing partner consumer and brand; and Sue Cook, current practice head of health, is promoted to managing partner of health and wellbeing , supported by Nicole Phillips, executive director.

Furthermore, Matt Thomas, current executive director of corporate and public affairs is promoted to managing partner of corporate and public affairs; and Haylie Marchant, current executive director at Brisbane, is promoted to managing partner.

Wright said, “It is an exciting new phase for Red Havas as we grow our global micro-network of agencies. We have great leaders in place to take us into the next evolution of the business and a superb group of future leaders helping us power the business. These changes enable the business to strengthen our areas of specialisations, as well continue to develop new offerings as clients evolve. Red Havas Australia continues to be one of the strongest performers for Havas in the APAC region.”

Meanwhile, Gupta commented, “Over the past 18 months myself and Steve have taken the Red Havas senior leadership team in Australia through a number of changes, to ensure we are future fit in this transformed world to grow the business and changing needs of clients. The deep expertise and experience of this leadership team reflects key areas of opportunity and growth, and enables us to attract the best talent.”

Marketing Featured Global

Red Havas nabs global PR remit of mobile ordering platform me&u

Australia – Global public relations agency Red Havas has been appointed by Australia’s mobile ordering and payment platform, me&u, to handle its global communications program including consumer, trade, and brand building.

The remit will see Red Havas managing the platform’s PR services and media relations across B2B and B2C in Australia, the UK, and the USA. Red Havas will be driving brand fame, asserting me&u as the global leader of at-table ordering innovation, and showcasing the brand’s ongoing commitment as an ally to the hospitality industry.

Katrina Barry, me&u’s CEO, noted that Red Havas is an impressive team, an agency with a global footprint and experience in both the corporate and consumer comms space.

“Their first response hit the mark and there were real synergies with their strategic and creative thinking and me&u’s vision – so much so that we awarded them the business and moved straight into execution. We look forward to working with Red Havas to shake up the hospitality industry in a meaningful way,” said Barry.

Meanwhile, Alex Bryant, Red Havas’ executive director, shared that me&u is a game-changer for the hospitality industry, born out of a need to bring much-needed disruption to the sector.

“The brand is building a better future for hospitality to inspire extraordinary memories and we are excited to tell that story in a meaningful way, cementing me&u as the category leader and hospitality innovator,” said Bryant.

In April 2022, Red Havas has expanded its presence in the strategic corporate communications space following the launch of a dedicated corporate affairs practice. With this, the company has named the 20-year industry veteran Matt Thomas as the new executive director of corporate affairs.

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Red Havas introduces corporate affairs practice, appoints Matt Thomas to leadership

Australia — Red Havas has expanded its presence in the strategic corporate communications space following the launch of a dedicated corporate affairs practice. With this, the company has named the 20-year industry veteran Matt Thomas as the new executive director of corporate affairs.

Thomas brings two decades of experience as a results-oriented, strategy-driven communications professional across the agency, consultancy, government, education, and the arts to the role. His agency background includes three years at Icon Agency, holding the position of director of public relations and content, where he grew a small team to win notable recognitionsacross the Asia Pacific.

He also holds extensive work experience in the government sector, including holding positions such as senior communications and advisory roles with Bayside City Council and Victoria’s Department of Health, as well as Department of Education and Training, Department of Sustainability and Environment, among others.

For the new role, Thomas will lead Red Havas’ corporate and recently formed public affairs teams to service clients within Red Havas and across the Havas Village. The newly created role encompasses oversight of crisis and issues management, strategic communications, corporate media relations, internal communications, stakeholder engagement, government, and investor relations thought leadership, reputation management and media training.

Simone Gupta, CEO of Havas PR Australia, said, “Thomas brings a clear strategic vision for how government and corporations approach corporate narrative, build and protect reputation. Red Havas has trusted long term relationships with clients across sectors that often look to us for this kind of counsel and strategic planning, led by Thomas this is an exciting growth area for the agency.”

On the appointment, Thomas welcomed the opportunity to help organisations navigate rapidly changing landscapes and shared his enthusiasm on his new role.

“Red Havas is a great Australian success story. From a small office in Melbourne, the brand has become a major powerhouse in the global public relations sector. I’m delighted to be joining the agency at this exciting time to build on its existing strengths in corporate and public affairs and expand this offering to meet the evolving needs of clients across business, government and the not-for-profit sectors,” Thomas said.

The introduction of the Red Havas corporate affairs offering follows the formation of the public affairs practice headed by experienced public policy and stakeholder engagement campaigner Lawrence Muskitta in December 2021, and the subsequent appointment of exceptional political and strategic communications advisor Jacqui Munro as senior account director.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Red Havas Sydney unveils three new senior hires

Sydney, Australia — Public relations agency Red Havas’ Sydney division has announced three senior appointments as the new business continues to build in a period of significant growth for the agency.

The new hire includes Kelly Lane, the new group account director, followed by Sally Heydon, the new senior account director and has also appointed Mauricio Ruiz to the newly created role of senior publicist.

Alex Bryant, executive director of Red Havas Sydney PR
, said that they are delighted to welcome this talented trio to the Red Havas team.

“Their breadth of client experience is well suited to the evolving needs of our business and clients looking for agencies with deep expertise, and the ability to flex across sectors and services to help them achieve and exceed business objectives. With our current and new client mix, we have strong vertical experience across travel, food and beverage, retail, luxury and lifestyle, technology, and government – with that experience bolstered even further with Kelly, Sally, and Mauricio on board,” Bryant said.

Lane holds extensive experience in brand storytelling and client partnerships bringing over a decade of understanding across a range of sectors namely retail, technology, travel, finance, property, and healthcare. She joins Red Havas from her role as external communications manager at the Australian telecommunications network nbn. Prior to that, Kelly worked with global communications agency Weber Shandwick, where she was most recently vice president and client relationship lead.

Lane has managed programs spanning consumer, corporate and sustainability communications, content, social media, and events, and worked with some of the high-value global clients like ALDI, Facebook, IBM, Garmin, and Honeywell.

On the other hand, newly appointed senior account director Sally Heydon is a consumer brand specialist who has worked extensively with brands from start-ups to fast-moving consumer goods, devising and implementing attention-grabbing, multi-channel campaigns, overseeing large scale events, and setting the news agenda of the day in busy press offices for her clients’ benefit.

Heydon has honed her expertise for over a decade in roles as senior account director for Finchco Agency and Adhesive in Sydney, and in account-focused roles in London, with both ENGINE Mischief and Palm PR.

Meanwhile, Mauricio is an expert in the luxury fashion, lifestyle, beverage, and hospitality sector who has applied his talents to drive outcomes for high-value clients namely ghd, Versace, Dolce &Gabbana, The Met Gala, Diageo, and ACCOR Group. He brings more than six years of international experience managing PR, communications, and influencer marketing initiatives to the agency.

Mauricio joins from Sydney-based senior publicist and communications roles at TMC PR and EVH. Prior to that, he worked as a communications consultant and event manager with KCD in New York and Mexico.

Commenting on the three new senior hires, Bryant said, “With these three new appointments and recent promotions of Kirsty McGorty to Business Director and Ourhai Turkhan to Group Account Director we have a strong senior bench to support our clients in 2022 to deliver on their strategic integrated communications programs. We have some of the smartest and most creative minds in the business but equally important is their desire to collaborate and continue to build on the wonderful people-first based culture at Red.”

Recently, Red Havas welcomed Kyra Shakspeare to its newly created position of client services director for their Brisbane office. Additionally, the public relations agency also welcomed three new senior hires to Organic Pacific, the specialist entertainment communications agency division of Red Havas.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Red Havas Brisbane welcomes Kyra Shakspeare to take newly created role of client services director

Brisbane, Australia – Public relations agency Red Havas in Australia has appointed Kyra Shakspeare, former senior account director at full-service PR agency Haystac, to step into its newly created position of client services director for the Brisbane office.

In her new role, Shakspeare will play an important role in helping to re-define the agency’s Brisbane presence, cultivating a new, high performing team in ‘the River City’, whilst also providing senior counsel to Red Havas’ national health division, which is experiencing rapid growth. She will report directly to Haylie Marchant, Red Havas Brisbane’s executive director.

Shakspeare brings 12 years of experience working with consumer and health clients, including Swiss, Chobani, Sanofi Consumer Healthcare, and Cotton On Group, as well as eHarmony, and Land Rover. Aside from her previous role at Haystac, she has also held leadership roles at communications firms WE Buchan and FleishmanHillard.

Commenting on her appointment, Shakspeare said, “Working beside Haylie in the past has led to some of my biggest achievements to date. I’m excited to work alongside Haylie again to drive our people and creative led-culture to continually deliver best-in-class consultancy for our clients.”

Meanwhile, Marchant commented that she is thrilled to welcome Shakspeare into this leadership role that will be pivotal in driving the growth and development of their Queensland offering.

“Kyra and I have worked together previously, so I know firsthand the value she brings to an agency and client partnerships. I’m incredibly excited about what the future holds for Red Havas Brisbane and our wider agency,” she said.

Red Havas Brisbane has also announced its recent new business wins, which include Club Active, the Australian health and fitness community for over 50s, and the Australian Counselling Association, the country’s registration body for counsellors and psychotherapists.

Marchant said that the new business wins reflect the depth of health expertise at the agency. She added, “The work we are delivering across the organisations is incredibly important and meaningful. I’m honoured to have the opportunity to make a positive contribution to the health and wellness of Australians, especially during this critical time.”

Main Feature Marketing APAC

What’s NEXT: 2022 will see the evolution of corporate purpose

The issue of sustainability as seen from the lens of corporate purpose has been growing through the last few years. More and more stakeholders are realizing that corporations and brands need to go beyond just brand promise but, more so, should reflect their own values and their missions. For 2022, we predict that this is further going to evolve.

One of the predictions in Red Havas Global’s 2022 Red Sky Predictions is the evolution of corporate purpose as it evolves from changing stakeholder expectations in the last year or so. For 2022, experts predict that corporate purpose must now be delivered with clear and measurable action.

As communications practitioners, we know the primary key to effective communication is authenticity. For 2022, actions designed to drive and emphasize corporate purpose should show that they can effect change. This stems from the growing realization among stakeholders that many companies and brands are riding on the ‘Sustainability’ bandwagon because it’s considered current and a trend. They create activities and product content to highlight their efforts but for most, it is superficial. It has no real connection to the vision and mission of the company or the purpose of the brand. There’s a term they use for this – greenwashing. This is when a company or brand spends time and effort to market themselves as environmentally friendly or have embraced sustainability – but it’s only just for show, only devised to follow trends.

Sustainability efforts and the commitment to provide meaningful actions and messages should not be skin deep. It should reside from a place of sincere authenticity. Only then can these actions become powerful enough to build and strengthen corporate purpose.

According to Havas Group’s 2021 Meaningful Brand study, there was a marked shift in how people view brands. About 71 per cent of people surveyed showed that they have little faith that brands will deliver on their promise and that only 34 per cent are transparent about their commitments. This clearly shows that audiences are now more cynical when it comes to how they view brands, companies, and businesses.

But despite this cynicism, brand expectation has markedly grown. An amazing piece of data is that 73 per cent of the respondents believe brands must act as soon as possible for the good of society and the planet. More significantly than this, though is that 64 per cent of people have now taken their own concrete steps to more affirmative action – they have signified that they will only buy from companies that have shown that they are not just out for profit but have a sincere desire to effect change and have taken concrete steps towards it.

In other words, consumers of today will take their business to companies and brands that are aligned to their own beliefs and those that are doing something to change the world for the better. It will be interesting to add that these consumers have even signified that they are willing to pay more just to support these brands.

This article is written by Mel Panabi, the business director of Red Havas in the Philippines.

The article is published as part of MARKETECH APAC’s thought leadership series What’s NEXT. This features marketing leaders sharing their marketing insights and predictions for the upcoming year. The series aims to equip marketers with actionable insights to future-ready their marketing strategies.

If you are a marketing leader and have insights that you’d like to share with regards to the upcoming trends and practices in marketing, please reach out to [email protected] for an opportunity to have your thought-leadership published on the platform.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Jacqui Munro appointed as Red Havas’ senior account director

Sydney, Australia – Seasoned political and strategic communications advisor Jacqui Munro has officially joined the team at PR and brand experience agency Red Havas as its new senior account director, as well as second in-charge to head of public affairs Lawrence Muskitta.

The recent appointment comes after Red Havas has won new business accounts, as well as strengthened its newly-created public affairs service offering.

Munro will deliver crisis and issues management, corporate social responsibility and public advocacy campaigns for Havas Village clients and other organisations and brands seeking to manage external change and take a leading role in shaping public debate.

Prior to joining Red Havas, Munro came from boutique public relations agency Agenda C, where she has experience working with clients across banking, economic policy and education. 

In addition, she has worked for former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, former NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian and former Federal Member of Parliament and President of the Australian Medical Association, Dr Kerryn Phelps. She has also worked on national public advocacy projects, including as a media adviser for the successful 2017 Marriage Equality campaign.

Speaking about her appointment, she said that she welcomes the opportunity to leverage her expertise to help clients build and manage long-term stakeholder relationships, navigate institutions and government and constructively engage in policy discussion.

“Developing a new public affairs offering with Lawrence and Red Havas presents the best of both worlds: The excitement of a fresh venture with limitless possibilities backed in by the strength of a respected industry player and a huge amount of talent to draw on,” Munro said.

Meanwhile, Lawrence said Munro’s experience in public policy and media relations brought invaluable political perspectives and experience to the agency’s public affairs offering.

“Diversity of thought is critical to finding innovative solutions to the challenges our clients face. With Jacqui on board, we bridge the political divide, bringing creativity and new ideas to the public discussion,” he said.

Main Feature Marketing APAC

MARKETECH APAC’s Top 5 Stories for December: APAC content marketing agency bags top spot

We can’t believe we are now down to the last roundup of top stories for 2021! It has been a great year recognizing the most well-loved brands and stories in marketing and tech for the year.

Our monthly deep dive and conversation with the top brands resulted in the much-awaited regular MARKETECH APAC Reports, and this month of December is no less an exciting list of one-of-a-kind campaigns, inspiring new leadership appointments, and fresh product launches. 

This month, we saw a food delivery platform moving into an entirely new vertical of consumer electronics. This period, a philippine arm of a global communications agency also announced a new business director, while, a content marketing agency with a presence in APAC unveiled an expansive roster of new hires in the region within its client servicing, creative production, and editorial teams. 

For the month, a very interesting campaign from a BNPL service in Singapore has also entered the list for bringing back audiences to the golden age of advertising in the 80s. Meanwhile, our MARKETECH Spotlight episode on a digital agency in Malaysia also came out on top for walking us through behind the scenes of incorporating AR and VR in marketing campaigns. 

Learn more about the top stories that will be closing off our 2021 with a bang:

Top 5: MY digital agency Unicom Interactive Digital on MARKETECH Spotlight


For our Top 5 story, we have the MARKETECH Spotlight episode of Unicom Interactive Digital, a fast-leading digital agency in Malaysia. 

In an interview with its COO Jareth Eng, we learn more about how brands are incorporating the tech of AR and VR in their marketing campaigns, and the best ways to deliver such that would effectively engage audiences at the same time push brands be top-of-mind. 

Having helped numerous brands develop immersive campaigns since the start of the pandemic, Eng shared the agency observed that content remains to be the top determinant of a success of a campaign. 

He says content must above all be personalized and authentic. 

“More and more, let’s be honest, we start to get bored of the same stuff, and we start to look for authenticity in content, because there are so much paid advertisements today [and] so much paid endorsements, and we reach a point where we do not know what is being said is real or not,” said Eng in the interview. 

Eng also shared his thoughts on the role of digital moving forward in the pandemic, “The perks of adding digital elements to campaigns have proven themselves during the past year. Even as we head back to a norm that we were used to, digital elements will still play a part.”

Top 4: Mel Panabi joins Red Havas PH as new business director

Havas Ortega Mel Panabi

Havas Group’s media and communications agency in the Philippines, Havas Ortega, has appointed Mel Panabi, former vice president of marketing communications at energy tech business WeGen Distributed Energy Philippines, as the new business director of its global public relations, social and experiential agency micro-network.

Through his new role, Panabi will be developing new products and services that will further strengthen Red Havas’ position in the country’s public relations and brands landscape.

MARKETECH APAC spoke with Panabi to know more about the area he is looking to prioritize in the role.

“I will be prioritizing promoting the ‘meaningful brands’ concepts of the agency. The global Red Havas Media Group actually made a study called ‘Meaningful Brands’, and it showed that people are now looking at the collective benefits provided by a brand, and its role in society,” said Panabi in the interview.

He adds that he is eager to start Red Havas’ sustainability and thoughtful corporate responsibility conversation. 

“One other thing is that the United Nations’ sustainable development goal is something that the brands need a lot, which is a space we want to occupy. We want to be associated with that kind of ‘meaningful brands’ and sustainability conversation,” he said.

Top 3: BNPL service Pace launches 80’s themed campaign

Pace campaign I Got This

Buy Now Pay Later service Pace in Singapore enters our top stories for bringing a very refreshing and unique creative campaign that brought people back to the vibrant pop culture of the 80’s. 

Armed with a video and an OOH ad, audiences saw VHS effect shorts complete with authentic 80s fashion, while decals on platform doors at train stations were reminiscent of the classic shopping advertisements from the period.

Speaking with MARKETECH APAC, Daren Goh, Pace’s head of growth, said that while BNPL is an inspiring tool for people to be financially responsible, payments could be something boring and pedestrian, hence, the push for the one-of-a-kind creative. 

“We thought 80’s was great because it’s something that any generation can relate to whether you’re [a baby boomer], even to Gen Z folks who are interested [in] how it is like [in the] 90s and 80s,” said Goh. 

He also shared that stimulating the feeling of Nostalgia was the goal.

“[80’s] seem like simple times and just really great times. So I guess we could tap into so many different feelings and people also see that no matter what age they are from,” said Goh.

Top 2: foodpanda to now offer delivery for consumer electronics via tie-up with Xiaomi

foodpanda x xiaomi

The leading food delivery platform in Asia, foodpanda, will now move to offer a wide range of consumer electronics and appliances for on-demand deliveries in Singapore and Thailand.

Partnering with Chinese tech giant Xiaomi, foodpanda will be offering Xiaomi’s products ranging from smart devices, audio, and mobile accessories, to household appliances, and will be delivered to homes within 30 minutes.

Speaking to MARKETECH APAC, Christian Urban, foodpanda’s head of marketplace of new verticals for APAC, shared, “Xiaomi is one of the great new vendors coming on board recently, and of course, a very popular brand and we are super happy about that. They are on board with hundreds of their products from their flagship stores across Singapore and Thailand.”

Regarding the platform’s new partnerships and offerings in 2022, Urban said that they want to enable more and more vendors to join their marketplace, helping them to digitize and get their goods delivered within 30 minutes.

“Our goal is to serve a large portion of essential and non-essential goods, and there is actually a strong demand for it. Hence, strategically, the goal is to go deeper and offer more of those goods to our customers,” he added.

Top 1: Content marketing agency Green Park Content bolsters APAC presence with new hire lineup


For this month’s #1 story, we take a look at the expansive company hire move by content marketing agency Green Park Content for the Asia-Pacific region. 

The hires, which were made in November, span across three major work categories: the client servicing team, creative production team, and the editorial team. In addition to these new hires, GPC also announced the promotions of some of its senior leaders, including Que Ramli to the role of global social media lead, Martin Niens as head of operations, and Fe Husaint who was recently promoted to the role of creative and global brand head.

Speaking to MARKETECH APAC, Marcelo Bittencourt, managing director for APAC at GPC, shared that ever since GPC started out in APAC four and a half years ago with only two hires, they have tested the waters of the business in the region and have since grown to provide various services such as search engine optimization and editorial content.

“The goal for GPC in APAC is [trying] to answer to our global FMCG clients on how we can be more localized, how can we have content that is meaningful for the local countries, because we are seeing a shift from budgets being centralized, and we are seeing how important it is, and how empowered are the local marketers are in the countries. So [we] want to be there with them because we are a part of a global [and] regional work lines and as close to their local operations we can be,” Bittencourt stated.

On his insights on content development, he said, “Content is about connection, content is about building a bond with the audience. You cannot do this if you are not ‘there’, if you’re not using slang, if you’re not understanding what is the environment that you have. This is the biggest goal for us: to be able to grow our local expertise in the countries in APAC, to be able to be that partner to our global clients., and be able to answer their strategies to deliver their brand purpose with quality and with trust.”

Rankings‌ ‌are‌ ‌based‌ ‌on‌ ‌Google‌ ‌Analytics‌ ‌from‌ ‌the‌ ‌period‌ ‌of‌ ‌16th‌ ‌November to 15th‌ ‌December.

Watch our exclusive interviews with the brands themselves on the latest episode of MARKETECH APAC Reports, now live on our YouTube channel.

This is in collaboration with Malaysia-based media company The Full Frontal.

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Havas PH arm names Mel Panabi as business director of global micro-network Red Havas

Manila, Philippines – Havas Ortega, the media and communications group of the global Havas group in the Philippines, has appointed Mel Panabi, former vice president of marketing communications at energy tech business WeGen Distributed Energy Philippines, to be the new business director of its global public relations, social and experiential agency micro-network.

Panabi has more than 25 years of experience in public relations, corporate communication, stakeholder relations, and crisis management, as well as political communications, and marketing. He has worked on accounts and brands across industries like fintech, real estate, telecommunications, and entertainment, as well as renewables. 

In his new role, Panabi will now be responsible for developing new products and services that will further strengthen Red Havas’ position in the country’s public relations and brands landscape. 

Panabi believes that PR is building a relationship across different touchpoints in the customer journey. He shared that it is not just a campaign but a conversation with brands that consumers can trust.

“I am particularly looking forward to the new direction we’re going to take – highlighting sustainability as a centerpiece communication strategy as we partner with brands. I am also excited by our plans for 2022, as we align our efforts here in the Philippines with the standards and industry-leading initiatives of the global Red Havas brand,” said Panabi.

Jos Ortega, Havas Ortega’s chairman and CEO, noted that meaningful messages aligned to authentic values are what stakeholders look for, and that the new appointment is great support in achieving this.

“Mel Panabi brings with him a wealth of experience that will help Red Havas navigate through the new role of PR and corporate communication—one that is informed by thoughtful corporate responsibility and governance,” said Ortega.

Today, Red Havas in Australia has also announced the appointment of Lawrence Muskitta to be the head of the agency’s new public affairs offering in the market. The new division spans government relations, stakeholder engagement, patient and consumer advocacy, and public behavior change campaigns, as well as policy monitoring and intelligence gathering, crisis management, and strategic partnerships.

Marketing Featured ANZ

Red Havas appoints Lawrence Muskitta to head new public affairs offering

Sydney, Australia – Public relations and brand experience agency Red Havas has announced the appointment of Lawrence Muskitta to be the head of the agency’s new public affairs offering. Said division spans government relations, stakeholder engagement, patient and consumer advocacy, public behavior change campaigns, as well as policy monitoring and intelligence gathering, crisis management and strategic partnerships.

Muskitta joins the agency from Facebook, where he held the role of public policy manager, for stakeholder engagement of EU Affairs, and was formerly based in Brussels. Prior to that, he spent two years at BCW Global in roles including head of marketing. During this stint, he has managed digital campaigns for major clients including the Australian Greens and the Australian Medical Association.

Speaking about his appointment, he commented that he is proud to join the agency in launching this new offering, stating that as the industry and governments grapple with issues such as geopolitics and climate change, public affairs will become essential to not only corporate reputation, but businesses’ bottom line.

“Our public affairs offering gives our clients a competitive advantage by helping them manage external change and take a leading role in shaping public debate. As this debate moves increasingly online, our team takes a digital-first approach to public affairs, seeing digital communities as central, not just an add-on to the political and media conversation,” Muskitta said.

Meanwhile, Simone Gupta, CEO at Havas PR Australia, commented that they are thrilled to have Muskitta launch the Red Havas public affairs offering, adding that his international experience in tech, sustainability and health policy, and his ability to identify trends that are shaping today’s world is a natural extension to Red Havas’ corporate communications expertise.

“The weakening in trust in government, the rapidly shifting global environment, combined with the power of technology and social media means that organisations and corporations need to support traditional stakeholder relations with peer to peer, citizen and community dialogue. Lawrence’s experience combined with Red Havas’ strong social media strategy expertise means we can provide this integrated digital approach to clients,” Gupta said.

He added, “He is already adding immense value to new and existing clients, guiding them through complex issues such as Senate inquiries, ACCC investigations and upcoming proposed regulations.”
Muskitta’s appointment follows the agency’s latest expansion to other markets globally, including China.