Movers & Shakers: Ad Council, Havas Media Group, Fresh Step, Budweiser and more

Movers & Shakers: Ad Council, Havas Media Group, Fresh Step, Budweiser and more

This week’s agency news, people on the move and brand buzz.

Agency News

Havas Media Group launched a media practice to help brands engage Hispanic, African American, Asian American and LGBTQIA+ audiences, led in the U.S. by Anabela Bonuccelli, EVP portfolio lead.

Branding agency General Idea acquired tech studio Reference NYC, which specializes in 3D visualization and motion design.

Independent agency collective Dawn added Indian Web3 specialist shop Zoo Media to its portfolio.

B2B agency Mx Group acquired Imagination to grow its U.S. presence.

On the move

TikTok named former NBA CMO Kate Jhaveri global head of marketing, stepping in for Nick Tran, who was let go in January.

Smart ring company Oura named Doug Sweeny CMO. 

VCCP New York appointed Robert Wills as its first CMO. Wills previously served as CMO, EMEA at the agency’s headquarters in London.

BBDO assigned Gustavo Sarkis the role of chief creative officer at its San Francisco office, where he will handle clients including WhatsApp, ServiceNow, Wells Fargo, and MegaMex.

Twitch picked up former YouTube global head of top creators Laura Lee as chief content officer to lead streamer partnerships and content strategy.

Wieden+Kennedy brought back Azsa West as chief creative officer at its Portland headquarters, as Ana and Hermeti Balaírn returned to London to lead its creative team there.

Pinterest named Xanthe Wells VP of creative.

Marketing boutique agency Hudson Rouge picked Lara O’Shea as its chief strategy officer.

Brainlabs appointed Divya Gururaj as its first global chief client officer.

Goodway Group appointed John Davis as SVP of brand direct.

Gaming media and marketing agency Click Media named Rhonda Walsh VP of brand partnerships to lead its U.S. sales team.

Wunderman Thompson Commerce appointed Ashton Hubbard as sustainable commerce director to support retailers in creating environmental commitments.

Grey New York hired Adrian J. Hopkins as its first SVP, internal culture and communications.

4A's hired Tahlisha Williams as head of talent and DEIB.

Miami-based ad agency Alma hired Daisy Delgado as VP, group account director to focus on the health and wellness sector. 

Forsman and Bodenfors elevated Steve Gorski to head of strategy.

Direct Digital Holdings-owned Orange142 named Scott Schult head of strategy, a new role.

Influencer marketing and tech agency Viral Nation named Paul Telner head of programming, working across its lifestyle, comedy and gaming verticals.

Havas Media Group appointed Joanna Lawrence to a new role, EVP, global agency development, and promoted Mark Bauer and Courtney Cherry to EVP, global head of client leadership and global chief of staff, respectively.

Publicis Groupe’s integrated media, digital and communications agency Team One hired Shannon Franqui as management director of growth.

Digital media company My Code hired Victoria Jordan as general manager of branded content and creative.

For Good

The Ad Council launched a seven-year long $65 million initiative to mobilize advertising, media and marketing industries to address mental health crises in the U.S. 

Cat litter brand Fresh Step partnered with FCB Chicago and Best Friends Animal Society to enlist gaming influencers to stream the popular cat adventure game Stray. Streamers encouraged viewers to adopt cats for National Shelter Appreciation Week using models of actual adoptable cats in the game.

DNA asked agency leaders to mentor one LGBTQIA+ employee or junior level talent for at least one hour per month for one year. In 2021, the 4A’s released a survey showing that less than 1% of employees in the advertising industry identify as LGBTQIA+.

Budweiser launched its inaugural veterans project, offering 16 U.S. veterans seed money to start, build or expand their company. Between November 7 and 11, veterans can comment on Budweiser’s Facebook, Instagram or Twitter posts sharing the branch they served in and explaining what they would use the money for to earn a chance to win money at the end of the month.

Brand Buzz

Frank’s RedHot put its original cayenne pepper sauce in a syringe so dinner guests can inject their food with it during the holiday season.

Blue Moon partnered with baker Melissa Ben-Ishay to create Spiced Citrus Pumpkin, Coconut Citrus and Tropic Sky mini pies to garnish its beer, available online for this week only.


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