Singapore – WATATAWA, a WE Communications company, has just recently announced the appointment of Stephen Robertson as managing director, effective immediately.

In his new role, Robertson will now oversee WATATAWA’s day-to-day operations and management of the business, while strengthening the agency’s footprint in Singapore and across Asia-Pacific.

He will be reporting to Nitin Mantri, regional executive managing director at WE Communications APAC.

Robertson succeeds Simon Pangrazio, who has decided to step down after 14 years and has been supporting the leadership transition. He will be leaving the firm on July 5. 

“Stephen is a leading strategist, client counsellor, and trusted voice in the industry,” said Mantri. “This succession has been long planned, and under Stephen’s leadership the agency will only continue to evolve, with WATATAWA’s clients in the very best hands.

”Speaking on his own appointment, Robertson said, “I am grateful for the opportunity to lead WATATAWA and maintain the high bar that Simon has set. It has been a privilege to work closely together over the decade and to develop a business and consulting model that is as relevant to our clients as ever and encourages and engages our people.”

Meanwhile, Kass Sells, CEO, international at WE Communications, commented, “This transition is a passing-of-the-torch moment to the next -generation of leadership and an example of how WE invests in and develops our leaders from within. A long-time business partner to Simon, Stephen is a seasoned communications professional who knows the market, our people and our clients, with a strong vision for the future of WATATAWA.”

Singapore – The Barracks Hotel Sentosa, Oasia Resort Sentosa, The Outpost Hotel Sentosa, and Village Hotel Sentosa by Far East Hospitality have appointed WE Communications (WE), a global integrated communications agency, as their PR and social media agency of record.

With the appointment, WE will offer full assistance for all communication initiatives, including influencer engagement, campaign launches, media relations, social media management, content creation, creative production, and other services.

With this new partnership, the four hotels’ brand narratives will be improved and their influence will be expanded into important markets. WE will focus on developing compelling storylines through creative content and social media interaction, with a first emphasis on Southeast Asia, South Korea, and China. These narratives will highlight the unique features of the four hotels that make up a single Sentosa precinct: the adult-only vibe of The Outpost Hotel Sentosa, the practical wellness of Oasia Resort Sentosa, the bespoke luxury of The Barracks Hotel Sentosa, and the family-friendly entertainment of Village Hotel Sentosa.

Speaking about the appointment, Daryl Ho, managing director, Singapore, said, “We are excited to partner with the four hotels to showcase their signature Singapore-inspired hospitality and unique experiences in the island destination of Sentosa. With our insights into the travel and hospitality industry and creative storytelling expertise, we look forward to helping the hotels deepen guest relationships and drive more response with each of their distinctive audiences.” 

Singapore WE Communications (WE), a worldwide communications agency, announced the appointment of Charmaine Lin as director of sectors and Michelle Lim as associate director of sectors in Singapore. Lin and Lim joined WE in February and report to Troy Lee, the head of sectors. 

Together, they are tasked to expand WE’s skills in tourism, travel, and hospitality, as well as technology, B2B, and crisis communications. 

Lin will oversee the Singapore Tourism Board account in her new role and manage WE’s growing clientele in the travel, tourism, and hospitality industries. 

Lin joins WE with more than 17 years of brand marketing and communications expertise. She spent ten years in Shanghai, where she occupied a number of leadership roles. Her most recent position was five years as managing partner at Gusto Collective. Lin was the vice president of client experience at Weber Shandwick for five years before that.

For many international tourism, travel, hospitality, fashion, and beauty companies, such as the Estée Lauder Companies, Marriott International, Royal Caribbean, Shiseido Group, Tourism Australia, and Victoria’s Secret, she has advised and led campaigns throughout her career.

Meanwhile, Lim has a decade of expertise in B2B, technology communications, public affairs, and crisis communication. Her most recent position was as account director at Fifth Ring, where she worked with brands including BASF, CHINT Global, Delta Electronics, Smith+Nephew, and XSQUARE Technologies. For nearly ten years before joining Fifth Ring, she directed communications and crisis planning for many Home Team units within Singapore’s Ministry of Home Affairs.

Speaking about the appointments, Daryl Ho, managing director of WE Singapore, said, “Charmaine and Michelle bring a wealth of experience and expertise to WE, and their combined talent in integrated communications, strategic storytelling and crisis communications will be an unstoppable force in supporting our clients as we chart the agency forward. I am beyond thrilled to welcome both of them to the team and am grateful that they’ve chosen to call WE their home.”

Singapore – WE Communications (WE) has announced it has been named agency of record for Elastic, a search analytics company, in Australia and Singapore. WE’s appointment follows a competitive pitch.

The communications partnership, effective immediately, will help Elastic promote and protect its brand and thought leadership positioning in Asia-Pacific countries.

Moreover, WE will draw on its full range of capabilities, including corporate reputation and brand purpose, media and influencer engagement, content development, digital marketing, and creative. 

Madge Miller, vice president of global communications at Elastic, said, “Cutting through market noise, to showcase the value of search-powered solutions, is essential to our communication strategy. WE’s strong technology sector knowledge, extensive media relations experience and creativity have motivated us to choose WE as our agency of record in Australia and Singapore.”

Meanwhile, Ayla Fitzgibbon, head of technology at WE Australia, commented, “For years, the Elasticsearch platform has empowered millions of businesses to find the answers that matter in milliseconds with the power of AI and search.”

She added, “WE is honoured to be selected as Elastic’s agency of record for Australia and Singapore, and we look forward to delivering communications strategies that promote the search analytics company’s growth in the region.” 

Lastly, Daryl Ho, managing director at WE Singapore, stated, “Elastic joins WE’s growing technology client roster in the region. Tapping our extensive experience in helping technology brands tell their stories, the team is excited to help write the next chapter of Elastic’s growth as a leading provider of search-powered solutions.” 

Singapore – How companies respond to global challenges and employee reputation is directly correlated with corporate reputation in today’s business environment, according to the latest ‘Brands in Motion’ global study by global communications firm WE Communications.

Data from the report mainly suggests that a company’s reputation is increasingly determined by its response to immediate and public concerns that have universal reach, such as cost of living and the climate crisis.

This shift has occurred alongside an increase in scepticism, with only 44% of brands seen to be delivering on their commitments, as half of survey respondents said that some brands that do take a stand on societal issues are just doing it for the sake of selling more products and services.

Notably, even as consumers are calling on companies to speak out more about issues such as cost of living (60%), employee pay and benefits (54%), the climate crisis (41%), and the responsible use of technology and artificial intelligence (38%), they expect brands to keep talking about and maintain a focus on social justice, DEI and gender equality.

When it comes to employee reputation on the other hand, social media and crowd-sourced rating sites are now fueling greater openness in the workplace about work conditions, benefits and pay. Beyond business performance, companies now must be transparent about employee experience, with 92% of respondents believing that employer-employee relations are among the essential characteristics of a company to build and maintain a great reputation.

Talking about these findings, Hannah Peters, EVP, corporate reputation & brand purpose at WE Communications, said, “In a world where the need for stability has never felt more personal, companies must go further to demonstrate progress and impact in areas people are feeling most acutely in their daily lives. This being said, long-term commitments remain important, but brands must also meet growing expectations to see and feel urgent action.”

Meanwhile, Rebecca Wilson, executive vice president at WE International, added, “It’s a delicate balance. The old rules of media relations, crisis communications and employee engagement need to evolve to respond to today’s accelerating demands. Brands that successfully pivot to embrace and commit to change will see long-lasting positive effects on their reputation and business success.”

United States – Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), an international nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting responsible forest management, has partnered with WE Communications (WE) as its global creative agency.

The partnership between FSC and WE Communications will focus on developing global marketing and communication programs, enhancing brand campaigns, creating impactful content, and engaging consumers and businesses worldwide in responsible forest stewardship. Services include strategic planning, consultation, social media content, and video production.

In a statement, Trevor Armel, Global Marketing Director of FSC, emphasised the critical role that forests play in combating climate change and preserving biodiversity, hence the need for a creative partner with strong strategic capabilities to combat environmental degradation effectively.

Moreover, Armel also expressed full confidence in WE’s ability to support FSC’s mission and enhance its standing as the leading authority on forest stewardship.

Affirming FSC’s trust, Daniel Blank, EMEA Head of Integrated Marketing at WE Communications, said that WE has its full dedication to sustainability and delivering outstanding results. 

Currently, WE’s international borderless experience team has taken charge of FSC’s global program, leading proposal development and providing ongoing support. The team comprises senior leaders from Germany, the UK, and Australia, offering data capabilities, strategic insights, and creative expertise. 

With this collaboration, FSC and WE Communications are poised to make significant steps in their shared mission to protect the world’s forests and combat environmental challenges on a global scale.

Singapore – Global communications firm WE Communications has appointed Troy Lee as its senior director and head of sectors and Ayden Ong as its director and head of digital, experience, and Technology (DXT), and strategy.

The appointments are targeted at enhancing the firm’s Singapore leadership team, delivering value to clients, and steering the next phase of growth for the agency while strengthening its strategic integrated communications offerings.

In the new role, Lee brings with him over two decades of experience in strategic communications, reputation management, C-suite positioning, and crisis management. He is also a seasoned practitioner with experience in crisis and issues management at Temasek.

He will also play a lead role on the Singapore Tourism Board account and will provide senior counsel for WE Communications’ clients such as Capgemini, Johnson & Johnson, Honeywell, and Adobe.

Meanwhile, Ong was elevated from being the firm’s Associate Director of DXT. He has been with WE Communications for over two years and has played a key role in developing and growing its DXT team.

Ong will also lead the Singapore team’s integrated marketing, digital, and data capabilities for the agency’s clients, including its predictive data intelligence, content, creative, social, digital marketing and production teams. 

“His ability to blend communications, digital platforms, data, creative and strategy together, has made him an invaluable partner to clients and brands that are transforming the way they communicate,” said Daryl Ho, managing director at WE Singapore.

Ho also added that Lee and Ong have extensive experience and diverse knowledge and believes that the two will be great leaders to the teams and incredibly valuable partners to their clients.

“Our industry has been in an extended transformative season, pre, during and post-COVID. The ability to make communications and marketing valuable again is truly a mix of art and science. It is no longer just about great storytelling, but how you blend the science in data and utilize technology to be extremely agile and efficient in building a brand,” he added.

Recently, WE Communications has also announced two new regional executive promotions for its APAC and EMEA businesses.

London, United Kingdom – Committed to global expansion and future growth, global integrated communications agency WE Communications has announced two regional executive roles for APAC and EMEA, promoting Avian WE group CEO Nitin Mantri to regional executive managing director for APAC, and WE’s UK managing director Ruth Allchurch to regional executive managing director for EMEA.

Mantri and Allchurch will both help in strengthening the agency’s operations in APAC and EMEA by overseeing client retention and business development, nurturing the teams of talents, and driving strategic growth initiatives through the development of new client services and capabilities. 

The two new hires will report to the president of International and global chief operating officer Kass Sells, who oversees WE’s eight international markets and its affiliate network. 

Speaking on Mantri’s appointment, Sells said that he has demonstrated his ability to develop teams and business operations that fuels the agency’s growth. Meanwhile, Sells considers Allchurch as a leader of action who will extend her knowledge to EMEA, after seeing her as an instrument for growth in their UK Business.

Sells added, “I’m proud of how each of these leaders has evolved at WE, developing their teams, building successful relationships with clients, all with an eye toward the future.”

Meanwhile, Melissa Waggener Zorkin, global CEO of WE Communications, said, “Our sector and services growth, expanded client partnerships, and acquisitions in these international markets have created an exciting inflection point for our business. We are well positioned to make strategic changes to our broader international leadership team that will enable us to build our blueprint for future growth.”

Mantri will maintain his Avian WE Group CEO title while Allchurch will continue to manage WE’s recent acquisition of Hopscotch Consulting.

Sydney, Australia Global communications and marketing agency WE Communications (WE) has appointed two key hires for its Digital and Experience Technology (DXT) team in Australia. 

The new appointees for the DXT team are Brian Keenan, the new head of strategy, and Mike Nikotin, the new art director. Both will report directly to Nichole Provatas, group head of the DXT team Australia.

The agency believes that the appointments will strengthen its integrated marketing services for clients, which include data-led creative, paid social, and performance marketing, as well as brand and content strategy, and influencer marketing, among others.

Keenan has previously worked as a senior vice president of planning and head of business intelligence for public relations firm Weber Shandwick. Throughout his career, Keenan has led campaigns for brands like ALDI, American Airlines, and IBM, as well as Mastercard. Keenan will now be responsible for analytics, content, and brand planning, as well as agency IP for WE’s DXT team in Australia, bringing with him his 10 years of experience in creative and client strategy.

Meanwhile, Nikotin has previously worked as an associate creative director for media company Enigma Communications. Nikotin brings with him 20 years of experience in the creative and art direction sectors, working with agencies such as WiTH Collective, The Works, Allianz, and American Express, as well as Toyota, and Virgin Mobile, among others. His appointment will see him moving WE’s Creative Studio to greater heights, made up of animators, designers, editors, and producers.

Commenting on the two new appointments, Provatas said that the addition of Keenan and Nikotin to the DXT team further expands the senior bench as the team continues to invest in the specialist craft and respond to the changing nature of the way people consume content following the pandemic.

Meanwhile, Dan Woods, managing director of WE Australia, also shared “It’s paramount for communicators to understand how the world’s rapid motions impact consumer behaviors and embrace new media for brand storytelling. Brian’s strategic insights combined with Mike’s creative capabilities will further enhance our counsel and available capabilities to clients as we collectively navigate today’s fast-changing reality.”

Singapore – Global communications and marketing agency WE Communications (WE), has announced the appointment of former managing director of communications firm Edelman Daryl Ho as its newest managing director for Singapore.

In Edelman, Ho led the digital practice and transformation initiatives in Singapore. He served as a partner to Singapore government agencies and global and emerging brands, helping them transform their marketing communications through predictive audience intelligence, technology, and smart content marketing programs.

Ho is an agency veteran who brings more than 20 years of experience spanning digital consulting, integrated communications, and B2B marketing. He has held leadership roles across the APAC region, including eight years in China at international agencies such as Iris Worldwide, Zeno Group, DDB, and Tribal DDB.

For his new role at WE, Ho will be charged with overseeing the agency’s 50-member team of communications experts and specialists in analytics, content, creatives, and digitals. He will work together with Simon Pangrazio, managing partner of WATATAWA, a WE-owned company headquartered in Singapore, to serve local, regional, and global clients in the country. With WE’s Singapore leadership team, Ho will drive business growth strategy and innovation in the APAC market.

“I joined WE at a time where we are witnessing a disruptive change to not just our clients’ businesses but ours too. People’s expectations of brands are rapidly shifting, and there has never been a more important time for us to help our clients be great custodians of their customers’ needs and their brands’ reputations,” said Ho.

“WE has been paving the way for authentic storytelling and purposeful businesses for many years. Today I have the privilege of taking that to the next level, by connecting an arsenal of data, technology, platforms, and agile storytelling capabilities to help our clients rise above the noise in this new reality, as they transform technologically and culturally. I am eager, excited, and looking forward to bringing my diverse experience in marketing, communications, and technology to help our clients be greater contributors to society,” Ho added.

Meanwhile, Rebecca Wilson, executive vice president for Singapore and Australia remarked, “Daryl is a time-tested, collaborative leader with a proven record of driving business impact with clients. We are thrilled to have him on board. Our clients’ businesses are evolving rapidly, with an increased focus on digital-first approaches. Daryl’s expertise in modernizing communications and marketing through content, data, performance, and technology not only makes him a valued client partner but also an excellent fit to take our Singapore business forward and unlock our next phase of growth.”

Kass Sells, global chief operating officer and international president commented, “Singapore is a critical market for WE as we continue to grow our regional and global client relationships across the agency.”

“Daryl’s leadership of WE in Singapore will complement our strong APAC leadership team and enable us to deliver more impact globally,” added Sells.

WE Singapore’s client partnerships span core sectors of technology, health, consumer, and corporate, with clients including BlackBerry, Elsevier, Lazada, and Lenovo among others. The agency has also recently begun new partnerships with big-picture organization Community Foundation of Singapore and Asia’s futuristic school PSB Academy