NEW YORK Ogilvy & Mather has promoted regional creative chief Tham Khai Meng to worldwide creative director and chairman of the WPP Group shop’s worldwide creative council.
In both roles, he succeeds Robyn Putter, who’s leaving the agency after more than 30 years. Putter had led the creative council since 2002.
He will take an office in New York and work closely with incoming worldwide CEO Miles Young, who starts Jan. 1. In July, Young was named to succeed longtime CEO Shelly Lazarus, who’ll remain as chairman of The Ogilvy Group.
Since joining Ogilvy in 1999, Tham, 52, has been co-chairman and executive regional creative director of network’s Asia-Pacific region, working out of Singapore. In 2005, he was elected to Ogilvy’s worldwide board.
“He gets results. He believes in great work that works. And, above all, he is an Ogilvy ‘gentleman with brains’ to his bones,” said Lazarus, in a statement.
Reflecting on his new role, Tham said that “opportunities abound in these frightening yet very exciting times. As a global agency, we are in a strong creative position, but we all believe we can do better.”
Referring to Young, he added: “We’ve been a team in Asia for a long time, and we both reckon that renewing our partnership will make for some spectacular success on the bigger stage.”
Before rising to CEO, Young was chairman of Ogilvy’s Asia-Pacific operations, based mainly in Hong Kong.