WPP has appointed former BMW Group executive Jens Monsees as chief executive officer and managing director of its Australian and New Zealand operations.
Monsees, who assumes the role in October, replaces Mike Connaghan who resigned last year after 12 years with the company.
Monsees was most recently the corporate vice president for BMW Group where he was responsible for leading global digital strategy, corporate planning and product strategy.
He is credited as an instrumental player in BMW’s transformation from a traditional manufacturer into a customer-focused and data-driven mobility tech company.
Prior to his time at BMW, Monsees held senior digital marketing and branding roles for Google Germany, Arvato AG, Mondelez and Schwarzkopf & Henkel.
He will relocate from Germany to Sydney to assume the new role and interim CEO John Steedman will continue to lead WPP AUNZ until Monsees arrives, and will then reassume his role as executive director and chairman, Media Investment Management, WPP AUNZ.
Rob Mactier, chairman of WPP AUNZ, said Monsees appointment represents the company’s “new positioning as a leader, not only in creative advertising, branding, communications and media but in technology, data and business transformation.”
“Jens has a strong reputation for building brands and leading change in several industries. He brings rich experience and client-side insights to the role, at a time when the changing needs of our clients are paramount.
“The Board also had a strong focus on the right cultural fit. Jens has built strong, diverse teams with a focus on collaborative culture creation. I have no doubt that he will inspire and lead the tremendous talent around him,” he said.
Monsees said, “I’m excited to build on Mark Read’s global strategy for a new era of creative transformation and to support the translation of that strategy into outcomes that build long-term profitable growth for the company, and for our shareholders.”
“I’m impressed by the creativity, dedication and drive for the performance of the WPP AUNZ team and their clear ambition to be the “go to” partner for clients as we all take on the challenges of a rapidly changing digital world. In this dynamic environment, the potential for WPP AUNZ, as well as for our partners and clients is tremendous. I’m absolutely convinced that together, we will be able to build stronger business models and stimulate growth by harnessing our deep creative and digital expertise,” he said.
Mark Read, CEO of WPP, said, “When we relaunched WPP plc as a creative transformation company last December we promised to put great ideas, technology and data at the heart of our new client offer. Australia and New Zealand are among the most exciting, vibrant and forward-looking markets in the world.”