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Marketing Featured East Asia

Akira Suzuki named as CEO of Wunderman Thompson Tokyo

Japan – Wunderman Thompson Tokyo has appointed Akira Suzuki as its new chief executive officer. Suzuki joined the agency from TikTok For Business Japan where he was director and head of Global Business Marketing.

Suzuki is one of the youngest CEOs of the company in APAC, and Wunderman Thompson believes that with his background in technology and advertising, he is well-positioned to integrate the company’s strength in creativity and digital capabilities to redefine the agency’s offering.

As a part of TikTok For Business Japan’s leadership team, Suzuki was in charge of shaping the future of the business through the intersection of business, creativity, and engineering. Facilitating growth through people-focused strategies, Suzuki built a diverse team across functions and launched multiple fast-growing business units, including Creative Labs, the Marketing Strategy team, and the B2B Marketing Communications team in Japan.

Before TikTok, Suzuki had both creative and strategic positions in Dentsu Japan, starting as a Strategic Planner in 2007, before eventually joining the leadership team as Creative Director and leading a team of 20 creatives in 2016. Suzuki’s vast experience covers many industries such as automobile, FMCGs, consumer tech and more. 

Ewen Sturgeon, International CEO of Wunderman Thompson, said that with the evolving nature of the industry in Japan, Wunderman Thompson will greatly benefit from a leader who is unafraid to explore the intersections of our capabilities, and who seeks out opportunities for growth for our clients.

“I am delighted to welcome Akira to Wunderman Thompson, to lead our Japan office. Akira is a new age creative technologist, strategist and business leader,” said Sturgeon. 

Suzuki commented, “In addition to its traditional agency functions, Wunderman Thompson Tokyo’s strength lies in its digital capabilities, particularly in the CX, Data, Tech, and EC domains. By leveraging these strengths, we will redefine Wunderman Thompson as the best Growth Partner for solving business challenges and leading business transformation for brands in Japan and beyond.”

Suzuki said that today, digital means that everything is measurable, which means transparency of results and accountability for the work delivered to clients.

“It is no longer acceptable to take a one-step-back approach to client work. Instead, we seek to be a partner, more proactively involved in the conception, implementation, and validation of their business and commit to increasing sales, profits, and corporate value as the common goal of both parties. We look forward to becoming the Growth Partner for our clients striving for ambitious growth,” he added.

Across the region, Wunderman Thompson has also recently unveiled new leaders within the year. The China division has announced Joyce Ling as its chief transformation and strategy officer, while in the Philippines, Joe Dy returns as CCO.

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Marketing Featured APAC

B2B tech marketing agency GetIT expands int’l presence with new Tokyo office

Singapore – GetIT, the B2B marketing consulting and solutions firm dedicated to brands in technology, IT, and telecom industries, has opened its office in Tokyo, strengthening its name in the international arena and expanding its already flourishing presence in the Japanese market. 

Group CEO & Director Anol Bhattacharya shared that Japan has always been a key market, where for over 20 years, technology industry leaders and telcos hailing from the country have been part of the many clients it served.

“Our experience with delivering solutions for our clients in Japan led to us acquiring local clients in the Japanese market. Growing our presence in Japan was a natural progression for us as we see a growing demand for Asia-Pacific marketers to venture into Japan and vice versa,” said Bhattacharya. 

With the new office, it will be bolstering its go-to-market solutions of content marketing, demand generation, lead nurturing, and account-based marketing to technology and telecom businesses in Japan.

Leading the charge in Tokyo is Kennosuke Saito as country manager. Saito is an industry veteran having been the country manager at Wunderman International and AdPeople Japan building a new marketing service agency business model focusing on digital and data solutions. Saito brings extensive marketing and sales experience. He had also been part of top global ad agencies such as Grey, Leo Burnett, Ogilvy & Mather, Wunderman, and MediaCom managing both B2C and B2B clients.

“I am very excited about GetIT’s Japan office, being a proud member of this growing professional organization. With the B2B marketing expertise and experiences GetIT has built in APAC, I am confident that we can expand our services to Japanese clients and help you develop effective and efficient marketing activities outside of Japan for further business growth. We are thrilled to be your best partner for your APAC marketing,” commented Saito.

GetIT is headquartered in Singapore. The firm commenced operations in Bangalore, India in 2015, and expanded its operations to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in 2019. 

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Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Agoda poll reveals Kuala Lumpur as top-searched destination among Malaysians

Malaysia – Online travel agency and metasearch engine Agoda has released its latest survey of most-searched destinations on agoda.com, where Kuala Lumpur is revealed to be the top-searched among Malaysians.

Kuala Lumpur was followed by Penang and Langkawi as the second and third most searched destinations, while similar local spots such as Port Dickson and Malacca rounded up the top five. Malaysians were also shown to shine interest in places outside the country with Thailand and Tokyo making it to the top 10 list. Meanwhile, national destinations such as Kota Kinabalu, Cameron Highlands, and Genting Highlands were also among the top searches. 

Kuala Lumpur remained the top destination for other types of searches such as for the couple, family, and solo travels while Bentong topped the list for group travels. Almost the same mix of places resulted from each category. Ipoh and Johar Baru entered the list for the couple searches. Malaysian families, on the other hand, were also keen for Korea as the country ended as one of top-searched for the family category. Meanwhile, the group travel search saw Allepey, Kuching, Koh Samui, and Taiping entering the list, while heightened liking towards international locations demonstrated among solo travel searches, with almost half being foreign countries such as Singapore and Taipei.

Agoda’s Vice President for Corporate Development Tim Hughes said that while Agoda’s search data shows that there has been a shift towards domestic destinations amid regulations for domestic travel, people are still dreaming about international travel adventures. 

“[Travelers] still have hope that travel corridors will open later this year to some key markets where COVID has been more contained, and are looking out for great deals for when they do,” said Hughes.