Phil Georgiadis is stepping down from Blue 449 – the media agency he co-founded – after 21 years. Georgiadis, the global chairman of Blue 449 and UK chairman of Publicis Media, is stepping down after parent company Publicis Media decided Blue 449 should become part of sister global network Spark Foundry, except in three markets, the US, UK and France, where Blue 449 will continue to operate for local clients.
Initiative has hired Wavemaker business development director Oya Mustafa as head of growth, UK and EMEA. Reporting to UK chief executive Richard Morris, Mustafa will lead Initiative’s business development.
PepsiCo has created a global chief commercial officer role and appointed its Europe and Latin America chief Laxman Narasimhan to fill it. The packaged goods giant behind Pepsi and Walkers has made the appointment alongside changes to its senior leadership team in North America. PepsiCo said it wanted to be “faster and more locally focused”.
WPP has hired Walmart executive vice-president and chief people officer Jacqui Canney as global chief people officer. Starting her new role on 1 June, she will report to WPP chief executive Mark Read.
RMS has appointed Jenny Maddock as head of digital. Maddock’s arrival marks the first hiring by newly appointed managing director Mike Kirwan, to whom she reports. She has been a freelancer for the past three years, before which she held posts including account director at Hit Search.
72andSunny Amsterdam has made a number of major hires. Chris Colliton and Kevin Weir, both previously at Droga5, join as creative directors. Nedal Ahmed has joined as a senior writer with responsibility for Adidas. The sportswear account will be given further support with the arrival of group brand director Kirk Johnsen, a former group brand director at Wieden & Kennedy Amsterdam. Finally, Anne Graham joins as group brand director, with responsibility for the agency’s Google account. She was previously at non-profit organisation Red.
We Are Pi has hired Mark Lester as director of strategy. He joins from R/GA New York, where he was executive strategy director. In his new role, Lester will work with We Are Pi founder and chief executive Alex Bennett Grant to shape the Amsterdam agency’s strategy.
AnalogFolk has nabbed Unilever data insight chief Clare Salter to run its data intelligence team. Salter, who was senior manager, global data and analytics at the FMCG giant, will become a managing partner, data intelligence, a newly created role.
Thomas Cook has created a combined marketing and comms role within its Hotels & Resorts arm, promoting David Child to head of communications and marketing.
WPP brand experience and activation agency Geometry has announced that Steve Harding will step down as chief executive and that he will be succeeded by Beth Ann Kaminkow, chief executive of Kantar Consulting Americas.
UM has appointed Simon Taylor as managing partner for American Express (Amex). Taylor joins the agency from Havas Media UK, where he also held the position of managing partner.
Digital product and services studio Ustwo London has hired Anna Soisalo as strategy director. Soisalo joins from Smart Design, where she was executive director of strategy.
Mark McCafferty, creative director at MailOnline, has been recruited by Hearst UK as head of partnerships. He reports to Jane Wolfson, chief agency officer.
Sizmek has appointed Paul Wright as general manager, EMEA. Wright has previously held senior roles in adtech, including chief executive of Iotec. Sizmek has also recruited Sascha Wittler as chief financial officer and George Pappachen as general counsel. Wittler succeeds Andrew Bronstein, who is remaining in an advisory role. All three appointees join the firm’s executive leadership team and will report to Sizmek chief executive Mark Grether.
The Ozone Project has recruited Sophie Raptis from News UK to work on its digital campaigns for brands. Raptis, who joins as client director, was part of the News UK’s client sales leadership team. She has also served as the published of WSJ Magazine in New York.
Human (formerly Three Straight Lines) has hired Daniel Ward-Murphy as strategy and growth director. He has previously held roles including strategy director at Salad, and has worked as a consultant at his own firm Curious Toddler.