OMD UAE Reorganizes Senior Leadership Team

OMD UAE has made several changes to its structure. After creating the new role of strategic marketing investors (SMIs) to reshape the traditional ‘planning’ and ‘buying’ divisions and encourage a deeper level of singular accountability, the company has now reorganized its various disciplines and appointed a new senior management team.

According to the agency, the move adds greater focus on key aspects of its product and provides more integrated and effective solutions for its growing client roster.

The new senior management team includes four new general managers (GM), allowing the current business unit directors (BUDs) to operate at a higher and more strategic level for its clients. Each GM is tasked with the supervision and development of specialized centers of excellence (COEs), such as performance and programmatic, content and experiences, HR and marketing, and ecommerce, while continuing to manage the existing portfolio.

Waseem Afzal, previously executive director of integrated solutions, is taking on the role of GM of OMD-Transact, the company’s ecommerce arm. With over 13 years of experience in digital media and marketing, Mr Afzal is credited with reshaping the digital strategy for the network and devising effective cutting-edge solutions for key clients and media owners.

Saleh Ghazal’s new GM remit will see him become responsible for programmatic and performance. With his experience in managing a team of digital and offline media specialists, Mr Ghazal will now focus on measurability and new strategic initiatives, a natural fit for his digital expertise while continuing to manage a vast range of clients.

In his new GM role, Maher Ghazal is building on his track record in integrating the agency’s digital, content and brand activation teams for some of the company’s biggest clients. He takes on the content and experiences unit at OMD with the ambition to accelerate the agency’s clients’ digital content adoption to deliver expansion and growth.

Karan Kukreja will now also oversee HR and marketing in a GM capacity. Mr Kukreja will focus on nurturing OMD’s company culture, allowing the best talent to thrive through a program of employee engagement activities, as well as working alongside the marketing team to create new experiences.

The new structure has also seen Elie Bachaalani expanding his role as the company’s regional executive director of investments for both the UAE and the Lower Gulf, while Antonio Chedrawy promoted to CFO of OMD MENA.

Strategy and analytics remain a core area of focus within the company, allowing Farah Moumneh to extend her current remit and better utilize her expertise in this field, while Maya Bou Ajram will drive the business development function, over and above her existing luxury portfolio.

The leadership team will be led by Zeeshan Merchant, who is making a lateral move into HR as senior manager, building on his growing passion for the discipline. Mr Merchant brings his decade of experience at OMD and wealth of knowledge to ensure our position as a Great Place to Work remains a priority.

“These promotions reflect our determination to continuously evolve and transform our business offering, while developing loyal and highly effective homegrown talent. This is a continuous and agile process that we adjust over time, re-aligning our structure, as the market, client and talent needs arise. I would like to congratulate the senior management team on their new roles, which will see them even more involved in steering both our and our clients’ growth, promoting best practice and devising the way forward for all our stakeholders,” commented Nadim Samara, CEO of OMD UAE.

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