Movers and Shakers: Dentsu, Vungle, Salesforce, Adobe, Group Nine, and more

The mobile marketing industry is ever-changing, and that applies to the people as much as the technology. Movers & Shakers is our regular feature following the hottest hires in the industry, so you can keep track of who’s joined which company, and what they’re doing there.

Top (L-R): Anne Stagg, Jeremy Bondy, Zahra Bahrololoumi
Bottom (L-R): Lee Edwards, Fanta Camara, Chris Petranto

Dentsu places Stagg in charge of CX and Merkle UK
Anne Stagg has been named as Chief Executive Officer of Customer Experience Management (CXM) for Dentsu UK & Ireland and UK Chief Executive Officer of Merkle. She will lead a business of 940 people at Merkle while also overseeing delivery across Dentsu’s CXM business which incorporates data and analytics, CRM, commerce, media, digital experience services, and B2B.

Stagg was previously Head of Client Services at Merkle, leading the creation of a fully integrated client services team across the company’s media, analytics, customer experience and technology service lines. She is also a former Managing Director of Indicia and Chief Client Officer at KMMS.

“This is a unique opportunity, to take on the role as Merkle’s first UK CEO in a time when we are reimagining the customer experience in the digital landscape,” said Stagg. “We are continuously improving our capabilities and the potential for our CXM line of businesses is tremendous when it comes to driving and supporting our clients’ digital transformations.”

Bondy rises to CEO at Vungle
Mobile ad platform Vungle has promoted Jeremy Bondy to Chief Executive Officer. He succeeds Rick Tallman, who moves into the role of Strategic Advisor.

Bondy, who joined Vungle in 2014, has held a number of senior sales and operational roles at the company, most recently as Chief Operating Officer. He has been responsible for setting up and scaling Vungle’s commercial organization, establishing teams in Berlin, London, Beijing, Seoul, Singapore, Tokyo, New York, and Los Angeles.

“I am honoured to assume the role of CEO. Vungle has many exciting future growth opportunities, and I look forward to guiding our world-class team in creating the industry’s leading suite of tools to help mobile app developers maximise the value of their businesses,” said Bondy. “On behalf of the entire Vungle organisation, I want to express my gratitude to Rick for his invaluable contributions to the company’s historical success and, personally, for his mentorship in preparing me for this role. I look forward to his continued partnership with the company and wish him all the best.”

Salesforce names Bahrololoumi as UK CEO
Zahra Bahrololoumi has been chosen as Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer at Salesforce UK and Ireland. She will join the company in March 2021 to lead operations in both key markets.

Bahrololoumi will join Salesforce from Accenture, where she leads the Accenture Technology practice for the UK and Ireland with a particular focus on artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and platforms underpinning new applications. She also sits on the board of TechUK and is a Vice Chair of the Technology Leadership Group for the Prince’s Trust.

“I am excited to join a company with such an incredible track record of driving positive change and success for its customers,” said Bahrololoumi. “Salesforce provides outstanding technology to help businesses digitally transform and there is a unique opportunity for Salesforce to accelerate its growth in the UK and Ireland. Salesforce is also deeply committed to the role that businesses can play in society; I can’t wait to get started and support its game-changing work.”

Edwards to lead EMEA digital experience at Adobe
Adobe has appointed Lee Edwards as its Vice President for Northern Europe, Middle East and Africa. He will lead Adobe’s Digital Experience business across the region.

Edwards previously led Adobe’s Digital Strategy and Solutions business in EMEA, a position he had held since joining the company in January 2020 after 14 years at SAP. He will also take on the role of Managing Director for Adobe UK, helping to drive the company’s CSR and diversity and inclusion programmes.

“Earlier this year, Adobe was named the Best Workplace in Technology among large UK companies, but this is only the beginning. Now more than ever, it is crucial that our employees feel supported in their work, their career ambitions and their personal lives,” said Edwards.

“It’s not just good leadership, it’s also good business. Adobe’s global success this past quarter, including record overall revenue of $3.23bn and seven per cent growth year-on-year in our Digital Experience business, would not have been possible without the incredible engagement from our teams. I look forward to building on that momentum in Northern Europe and helping Adobe’s customers in every industry adapt to a new era in experience.” 

Group Nine selects Camara as DE&I head
Fanta Camara has been elevated to the role of Head of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at mobile video publisher Group Nine Media. She will design and lead a holistic DE&I strategy, identify growth opportunities, promote the adoption of inclusive practices and provide recommendations to senior leadership.

Camara most recently served as Human Resources Business Partner for Group Nine’s mobile news publisher, NowThis, where she developed tailored solutions for strategic workforce planning, change management and team building, in addition to serving as a Diversity and Inclusion Manager. Prior to Group Nine, she was Senior Human Resources Generalist at Snap Inc. Camara also held multiple human resources positions at The Estee Lauder Companies.

“Group Nine continues to lead the digital media space with its brands’ optimistic content that highlights diverse backgrounds, voices and opinions,” said Camara. “I am thrilled to bring my own personal and professional experience to further cement the company’s foundation as a safe place that is equitable, diverse and inclusive for every employee. We have ambitious goals and I am ready to tackle this crucial endeavour.”

Petranto to head up Kantar Analytics
Data and insights firm Kantar has appointed Chris Petranto as Global Head of Kantar Analytics. He replaces Fuentes who has taken on the role of Chief Operating Officer for the Insights division of Kantar.

Petranto, who will lead teams responsible for supporting client’s digital transformation, has been with Kantar since 2004. Before forming Kantar Analytics, he created and led Millward Brown Analytics.

“It’s a privilege to lead the team and further expand our solutions across the globe” said Petranto. “Since our launch in 2018, we have been on a mission to create the most advanced AI and machine learning tools, enabling our clients to make better business decisions, faster and at scale.” 

GroupM UK restructures
WPP’s media investment group GroupM UK has shifted Niel Bornman, Lisa Humphreys, Paul Rowlinson, Simon Willis, Charlotte Frijns, and Mark Collins into new roles as part of a restructure.

Bornman, currently Global Chief Technology Officer – Data, Product & AI at WPP, move to GroupM UK in January to lead its products and services squad as Chief Product and Services Officer.

Humphreys, current WPP UK Strategy Development Director, will begin a dual role leading the transformation and integration squad as Chief Transformation and Integration Officer, alongside her current WPP role.

Rowlinson moves from Managing Director of Group Digital UK to become Chief Customer Engagement and Growth Officer.

Willis will move from Managing Director of Investment to become Chief Investment Officer – leading the media investment management squad.

Finance and business operations will come together as one led by Frijns, Chief Financial Officer at Group M UK.

Collins will move from Chair of Investment to overall GroupM UK Chair.

“The changes announced today are the latest iteration of our goal to work in partnership with our clients to grow and create competitive advantage. By adopting a more agile way of working with these new overlapping squads we have the ability to adapt and shape our focus based solely on client needs,” said Karen Blackett OBE, GroupM UK CEO. “I am delighted with the new leadership at GroupM UK and thrilled to welcome both Niel and Lisa. Having worked with them for many years at WPP I am looking forward to having them as integral parts of this new era at GroupM UK.”

Tansill named transformation chief at Ogilvy
WPP’s Ogilvy New York has promoted Charlotte Tansill to the role of Chief Transformation Officer. She will lead an integrated strategy function for New York spanning all of the agency’s capabilities, while also partnering with Lauren Crampsie, President of Ogilvy New York, to drive the office’s business strategy and transformation.

Tansill has served in a range of roles across the Ogilvy network since joining in 2008, most recently serving as Executive Director of Ogilvy New York’s social media practice.

“I am grateful to Lauren and Ogilvy leadership for affording me this opportunity.  I am incredibly excited to accelerate growth at Ogilvy by leading our transformation and aligning our business practices with the evolving realities of our industry,” said Tansill. “Over my nearly 13 years at Ogilvy, I have fully embraced the strength of our culture and talent.  Our clients rightfully see us as thought-leaders, and we must innovate and deliver to maintain their trust.  I look forward to working with my colleagues to ensure our leadership position sustains for years to come.”

DDB promotes Hesz and Rooney
Alex Hesz and Roisin Rooney have been elevated to the roles of Global Chief Strategy Officer and Global Chief People Officer at DDB Worldwide respectively.

Hesz will oversee the entirety of DDB’s global offerings and has work to harness the collective power of the global network. He most recently led strategy for the DDB’s Europe, Middle East & Africa and was Head of Strategy for Adam&Eve. He will continue to serve as Adam&EveDDBs Group Chief Strategy Officer for operations in both New York and London.

Rooney will lead recruitment, retention, leadership development and training and initiatives to ensure DDB talent is continuously advancing to stay ahead of client needs. She previously held the role of EMEA Chief People Officer at Adam&Eve.

“I am thrilled to elevate our current leaders from within the network into these roles,” said Worldwide CEO Marty OHalloran. “Things are changing rapidly, and were moving at pace to stay ahead. Alex brings an incredible track record from Adam&EveDDB, an agency known for its legendary work and clients. Ros experience in EMEA with growing the network, fostering our talent, and creating culture will ensure we are helping our people through this challenging time and into the future.”

Adams joins Kubient as partnerships SVP
Kubient, a cloud advertising marketplace, has hired Ryan Adams as Senior Vice President of Partnerships. He is charged with driving demand-side revenue and supporting supply-side inventory with the ultimate goal of growing partnerships and furthering Kubient’s development of relationships with brands, agencies, and publishers.

Adams has over 20 years’ experience as a sales and marketing professional at companies including Centro, where he was Head of Client Direct and Publisher Solutions in the East region.

“Kubient is a cutting-edge company driven by a passionate team of forward-thinking industry experts,” explained Adams. “I’m eager to join my new colleagues and work at a company that is bringing light to industry ad fraud and helping brands optimize their ad operations.”

FutureBrand turns to Esquivel as strategy chief
Eliza Yvette Esquivel has been announced as Chief Strategy Officer at brand transformation company FutureBrand North America. She will lead and build client teams across the agency, while developing and executing transformative strategic work for their global roster of clients.

Esquivel brings 20 years of marketing experience to the role, having previously served as the Senior Director of Global Brand Strategy at Microsoft, where she led a senior team of global strategists and partnership managers that managed the company’s productivity software portfolio. Before that, she served as Vice President of Global Brand Strategy at Mondelez International.

“I am excited to join a creative futures company,” said Esquivel. “I love thinking about and creating the future and see a huge opportunity to innovate the way thats done. I believe in the power of creativity to drive commerce and culture. With todays dynamic shifts in all areas of society, creativity is more crucial than ever.”

Lawson Johnston to manage partnerships at Hudson MX
Ad tech firm Hudson MX has named Sarah Lawson Johnston as Executive Vice President, Managing Director of Agency Partnerships EMEA.

Lawson Johnston joins Hudson MX after three years on the launch team of Covatic, where she will remain on the Board of Directors. Prior to this, she spent 22 years at Mediocean where, as Managing Director for Europe, she focused on new and existing revenue, oversaw the offices in London, France and Germany, and had full responsibility for the company’s European client relationships and business.

“I’m thrilled to be joining Hudson MX at such an exciting inflection point,” said Lawson Johnston. “They secured proof of concept through their work in local markets, they’ve established a fully comprehensive platform to replace legacy providers as the system of record, and they’re now breaking ground with the global agencies. The industry has been crying out for alternatives for years and Hudson MX has delivered a solution that far exceeds the original demand. I have great respect for JT Batson and I look forward to working with him and his team to develop the culture of the company and expand its reach.”

LivePerson adds Hamel and Higgins to exec team
Andrew Hamel has been hired as Executive Vice President of Operations and Emerging AI Businesses, while Shani Higgins has been appointed Senior Vice President of Global Partnerships, at conversational AI company LivePerson.

Hamel will oversee the daily operations of the company, help accelerate growth and scale, reimagine the future of work from a synchronous office-centric model to an asynchronous employee-centric workforce, and steer its business-to-consumer strategy and execution. Before joining LivePerson, he led the development of Amazon’s recommendation engines, search function, and other machine learning-powered experiences. Prior to that, he held leadership positions at Tacit Software, Infoseek, and Tumbleweed.

“Im proud to join LivePersons team as we build the new operating model to scale to the next level,” said Hamel. “Conversational AI is bringing about a shift as profound as search and social did, and its an exciting time to join the industry leader in this space.”

Higgins’ responsibilities include the selection and support of new global strategic alliances as well as the continued growth of existing partnerships. Prior to joining LivePerson, she gained over two decades of experience at companies including Mozilla, Infoseek, and Ziff Davis, as well as in her role as CEO of Technorati.

“Its an important time in LivePersons history to turbocharge growth,” said Higgins. “Im excited to join the companys team of experts as we distribute and integrate our industry-leading tech and inject even more value into our partner ecosystems.”

Ionita joins Organic dev team
Digital marketing agency Organic has appointed George-Andrei Ionita as Senior Developer. He will be focusing on leading back end development across multiple projects and his day-to-day responsibilities will include developing and maintaining cloud-based applications and APIs, ensuring efficiency and stability of backend code, working to design application architecture and helping to develop departmental processes.

Previously a developer at Prodo Digital, Ionita’s experience also includes stints at Fact Digital and Skiddle.

“I was blown away by the level of professionalism, expertise and knowledge at Organic,” said Ionita. “This role is every developer’s dream – being able to work with the latest tech and grow as part of a talented team, in a fun, relaxed environment.”