Sydney, April 18, 2016: WPP AUNZ has appointed industry veteran John Steedman to the newly created executive position of Chairman, WPP Media Services, Australia and New Zealand.
As part of the appointment, the former GroupM Australia Chairman and CEO has been tasked with working with the group’s media agency leads in developing an overarching business strategy for the collective business which includes agencies such as Ikon, Bohemia and GroupM agencies Mediacom, Mindshare, MEC and Maxus.
It follows his recent appointment to the WPP AUNZ board as Director earlier this month.
WPP AUNZ CEO Michael Connaghan said with a long and proven career in the media industry, Steedman was well placed to help move the Group’s Media sector through its next phase of growth.
“John has an innate ability to get business cooperating for the benefit of clients. It’s what drove the success of GroupM under his stewardship, and will no doubt result in further growth across the newly expanded Media capability of WPP AUNZ. In addition to our large iconic media businesses, we have a number of smaller creative and media agencies spread across AUNZ who will benefit from having Steady’s experience available.”
Steedman said of his new position, “WPP AUNZ has some of the most outstanding media businesses in the region. As individual agencies they are already successful; working even closer together they will be a force to be reckoned with. The wider group of agencies I have been asked to oversee represent some amazing specialists and wonderful growth opportunities.”
He said while a major focus would be on getting agencies to work collaboratively where appropriate, the structure of the agencies within the group would remain unchanged. “While we’ll be trying to achieve greater horizontality, it will be business as usual for the agencies as they look to continue their pattern of growth and outstanding client service. That means Ikon remains as is, GroupM remains as is, and other agencies also remain unchanged. What is different is the ability to drive collaborative opportunities for our clients across a greater breadth of capability.
“WPP AUNZ is in an ideal position to lead the market across a range of disciplines, and I’m excited at the prospect of working with such outstanding and established leaders,” Steedman continued.
Steedman’s new position is effective immediately.