Mcgarrybowen Expands Into Singapore

Invests in local shop for sixth office

Mcgarrybowen is expanding into Singapore by acquiring a 20 percent stake in Mangham Gaxiola, a three-year-old independent started by two top ex-Ogilvy execs in the region.

The shop, which will be called manghamgaxiola mcgarrybowen, will be led by founders Stephen Mangham, the former group chairman of Ogilvy Singapore, and Robert Gaxiola, an Ogilvy Singapore executive creative director. The two execs will be joint managing partners at the agency, working for marketers like Nivea, Samsung, Subaru, and CIMB Bank.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

To bolster its scale the mid-sized Dentsu Aegis Network shop, with offices in New York and Chicago, has been expanding outside the U.S., opening offices in London, Shanghai and, last summer, Sao Paulo.

Dick van Motman, CEO of Dentsu Aegis, Southeast Asia, cited Singapore's stature as a regional hub where an increasing number of headquarters are being set up by blue-chip multinationals. Increasingly, these regional hubs are also taking on global duties, he added. Procter & Gamble, for instance, runs its global baby and family care businesses out of Singapore, and so does Johnson & Johnson and Unilever for a few categories. From its Singapore base Mangham Gaxiola recently became a global club agency for Beiersdorf, doing worldwide projects.

Another draw for Dentsu Aegis, which made the investment in Mangham Gaxiola, and mcgarrybowen is that Singapore has a long history as an advertising center and a place where regional talent resides. Case in point: During Stephen Mangham's six-year tenure at the helm of Ogilvy Singapore, revenue at the company trebled.

Motman said the new manghamgaxiola mcgarrybowen "will expand our creative offering, building on our commitment and footprint in Singapore and across Southeast Asia."

For creative upstart Mangham Gaxiola, the new association brings the backing of a large Asian-based global network that gives the agency new resources in media planning, strategic planning, digital solutions and creative distribution. 

In running the agency, Mangham and Gaxiola will work closely with mcgarrybowen chief creative officer Gordon Bowen, and they'll be part of the Dentsu Aegis Network Singapore leadership group.