Optimedia’s Young Tapped as Mindshare N.A. Chief

Current CEO Cowdell becomes chairman

Antony Young, chief executive of Optimedia in the U.S. is taking on that role at Mindshare North America. As CEO, he succeeds Phil Cowdell, who was named chairman, a new position at the GroupM media services agency.

Young assumes oversight of all of Mindshare’s operations in five U.S. cities and Canada, with responsibility for more than 800 employees and an estimated $9.8 billion in billings, according to Recma.

At Optimedia, Young is being replaced by Dave Ehlers, who was tapped as president of the ZenithOptimedia Worldwide unit. Ehlers has been with the agency since 1995 and most recently served as evp, managing director for ZenithOptimedia USA.

Young joins Mindshare in October and Cowdell, who has been Mindshare’s North American CEO since 2009, assumes his new role at that time. Before his chief executive role, Cowdell was one of Mindshare’s global client leaders with responsibilities for multinationals that included Ford, Unilever, and Kimberly-Clark.

Young has led Optimedia’s U.S. operations since 2006, after serving as the London-based CEO of ZenithOptimedia in the U.K. Young and Cowdell both made their move to the U.S. in 2006 and previously worked together in Asia.

Separately, at Mindshare’s WPP parent GroupM, Bryce Townsend was named CEO of GroupM Entertainment & Sports Partnerships. Townsend, who was evp, general manager, North America for the entertainment and sports consultancy, succeeds Greg Luckman, who is leaving the company for CAA Sports, a unit of Creative Artists Agency.


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