Baughan joins the agency from its sister Group M shop to fill a vacancy created in November last year when the former managing director Tim Irwin moved to the role of chief operating officer.
Reporting to the Maxus chief executive, Lindsay Pattison, Baughan will take day-to-day responsibility for an agency that has grown from 26 employees in 2009 to 125 on the back of new business including BT and the global Barclays account.
Baughan had worked at Mindshare for two years as its head of business development and, before that, was a business director at MEC, focusing on clients including Orange and Danone. During his time at MEC, Baughan spent a year seconded to BT.
Pattison said: "Nick's appointment will enable us to continue to develop our culture, our strategic offering and retain and nurture our fantastic talent, and ultimately carry our recent success into 2012 and beyond."
Baughan, who will join Maxus in March, said: "The recent success of the agency is clearly testament to a talented and dedicated group of people and I'm looking forward to working with Lindsay, Tim and the team."