Dentsu Aegis Network has appointed Guardian News & Media chief revenue officer Hamish Nicklin as executive director – media for the UK and Ireland.
Nicklin will report jointly to Euan Jarvie, UK and Ireland chief executive, and Peter Huijboom, global chief executive, media and global clients.
In his new role, Nicklin will be responsible for leading the commercial growth of the group’s media line of business, overseeing the development of five agency brands – Amplifi, Carat, Dentsu X, iProspect and Vizeum – alongside their respective leadership.
Nicklin replaces Matthew Platts, who is leaving after 27 years with the business.
"Hamish is a truly creative business leader with a reputation built out of an ability to maximise the opportunities for sustainable growth," Jarvie said.
"He has also showcased a real understanding of how digital is transforming our industry and how that can be leveraged to build lasting partnerships.
"I look forward to our business benefitting the unique skills and perspectives that Hamish will bring as we continue to focus on delivering the best services in the marketplace for our clients."
Nicklin said: "Our industry finds itself in a challenging but hugely exciting period of change. Throughout my time in the industry, I have been consistently impressed with the way that Dentsu Aegis Network has reacted to those changes and altered the way it operates accordingly.
"I’m really looking forward to helping this business take advantage of the strategic opportunities that this presents."
When Campaign contacted Nicklin late last year, a source close to him insisted he was not in talks with Dentsu Aegis.
His appointment follows a string of senior changes and departures at Dentsu Aegis, including Platts, UK executive chairman Nick Waters and Amplifi UK chief executive Pippa Glucklich, and the group is in the middle of a restructuring that could affect up to 9% of UK staff.
Nicklin joins after four years at the publisher of The Guardian and The Observer, during which time he helped the business recover from making severe losses to breaking even last year.
Guardian News & Media won sales team of the year at Campaign's 2018 Media Week Awards and Commercial Team of the Year at the Campaign Media Awards in 2019.
Nicklin joined The Guardian after a year as UK managing director at AOL, following almost a decade working at Google, including stints as director of agency sales and head of creative agency partnerships.
Guardian News & Media has yet to decide Nicklin’s replacement and it is understood that it will be one of the priorities for incoming chief executive Annette Thomas.
Thomas joins in March from educational data and analytics company Web of Science Group.
A Guardian News & Media spokesperson: "Hamish Nicklin has been an integral member of the Guardian executive committee over the last few years.
"His work has been instrumental in leading our commercial team to deliver an outstanding performance. We wish him all the best for the future."