Omnicom Media Group MENA appoints new MENA CEO

Global media network, Omnicom Media Group MENA has appointed Nadim Samara to the role of CEO of OMD MENA. With over 17 years within the agency, Nadim most recently held the role of CEO of OMD UAE where he secured local, regional and global accounts while creating new structures and strengthening the agency’s services. In his new role, Nadim will lead a network of 15 offices with over 600 employees and manage more than 200 clients, while driving transformation in the evolving media and marketing landscape to better respond to current and emerging client needs.

“Both the supply and demand side of our business are experiencing challenges that are increasing in frequency, velocity and intensity,” says Nadim. “This puts our clients’ and partners’ business models under significant strain and calls for more dynamic and agile responses. We’ve proactively evolved and our offices across MENA have the talent, the culture, the resources and the leaders to not only provide clients with results-driven solutions but also design the future. By scaling up our expertise in analytics, performance, tech and creativity in both depth and breadth, we will empower all our teams across the network to operate at the highest level.”

OMD collaborates with business intelligence agency

OMD MENA has announced an exclusive partnership with MEA-based business intelligence and research firm, Emerging Markets Intelligence and Research (EMIR). Through the partnership, OMD, part of Omnicom Media Group, aims to offer its clients effective marketing strategies and better business results with the help of market and governmental intelligence, insights and analysis.

“Our ‘Insights.Ideas.Results’ motto has always been our guiding principle and philosophy at OMD, so naturally we strive to sharpen each of these facets with the best resources available,” says Nadim Samara, CEO, OMD UAE. “Today, we operate in a world that is rich with data and insights and it’s our role, as a strategic partner to some of the world’s biggest brands, to access this intelligence and extract its value for our clients. This allows us to collectively make even more impactful decisions going forward and, ultimately, deliver better marketing performance and business results.”

OMD makes changes to management structure

Omnicom Media Group MENA, holding group of OMD, PHD and Resolution in the Middle East, has made a number of promotions and changes to it’s management structure in the region. Nadim Samara has been promoted from Managing Director to the newly-created position of CEO, OMD, UAE. With over 15 years of experience with OMD, Nadim has international experience with the firm and will now manage it’s UAE operation, as well as ensure that the regional headquarters continue to develop its product offering and maintain its cutting edge in the areas of talent, innovation, analytics, data and performance.

Wissam Najjar will also now relocate to Dubai in order to take on the newly-created role of Regional Managing Director for the Lower Gulf, Levant and Emerging Markets. Previously Managing Director of OMD Levant, Wissam has worked across the OMD network and will now assume the additional responsibilities of OMD’s operations in Kuwait and Qatar, as well as its expansion into new markets in the MENA region. Former Director of Investments at OMD Lebanon, Rachid El Khazen has been promoted to the role of General Manager to take over from Najjar.

“The OMD network is bursting with talent so it is hugely gratifying to see Nadim’s, Wissam’s and Rachid’s accomplishments being rewarded with promotions and new assignments,” says Elie Khouri, CEO of Omnicom Media Group MENA. “While our market and industry are in the midst of a transformation, we see this as an opportunity to grow further. We have always focused on innovating and being future-ready. This is yet another expression of this aspect from our personality.”

OMD appoints Head of Analytics

OMD MENA has welcomed Walid Hadid to the newly created role of Head of Analytics, Previously Head of analytics at OgilvyOne, Walid has over 20 years of experience in developing, implementing and leading analytics solutions. In his new role, he will be working to provide clients with a holistic, integrated service delivering business results as well as media performance.

“We have developed a strong experience in data and analytics to better inform our clients’ investment decisions for well over a decade now,” says Nadim Samara, Managing Director, OMD UAE and Lower Gulf. “An appointment of this caliber reflects our ardent commitment in this field and will see us strengthen the data and analytics conversation with our clients. Thanks to the expertise, systems and processes we have in place, we can help them extract even more from their marketing initiatives.”

Walid adds “I am really excited by everything that I’ve seen at OMD so far with regards to the talent and systems they have built to date. I look forward to extending this impressive analytics offering and stimulating our client’s growth further through stronger data partnerships that provide timely and powerful insights.”

OMD launches study to explore ‘Future of the UAE’

OMD has launched a study to explore future behaviours of UAE consumers. The survey, called ‘The Future of the UAE’, aims to assess the impact of changes to the country’s population and socio-demographics on lifestyles, shopping, technology and media consumption. It will also explore consumers’ expectations and attitudes towards life in the UAE and the country’s role globally.

The fieldwork for OMD’s study on the future state of the consumer society in the UAE is already underway, including face-to-face interviews with a representative sample of 2,000 residents in the country.

OMD UAE is partnering with Integral-OMG, the research and consultancy arm of Omnicom Media Group MENA, to conduct in-depth qualitative and quantitative research, exploring consumer values and attitudes in the UAE today, as well as the changes in the modern household and their impact on decision-making and media consumption.

As well as dealing with societal issues, ‘The Future of the UAE’ study will delve into consumers’ attitudes towards technology, including smartphones, mobile and e-commerce platforms, media consumption and technological advances, as well as their expectations from brands, key sentiments and values that resonate with them, and their lifestyle aspirations for the future. Based on this intelligence, brands can derive affirmative conclusions on how to better communicate with their consumers in the face of change.

“Technology is constantly transforming our industry worldwide, and in the UAE that velocity is much higher given consumers’ seamless adoption of anything new,” says Nadim Samara, Managing Director, OMD UAE & Lower Gulf. “Catalysed by both the government’s pursuit of technology, along with a higher average purchasing power parity by the UAE residents, these future behavioural habits of consumers are an area of vast interest for brands and one that is particularly hard to predict. This is why we have decided to undertake this study, with the goal of gaining valuable insights on the future for us to make more effective and impacting decisions for our stakeholders; our intimate knowledge of ‘where we are heading’ is paramount to navigating the consumer pivots successfully.”

‘The Future of the UAE’ is part of a global research initiative by OMD, with some 15 studies either already completed or currently underway. Based on a consistent model, they allow for international comparisons, making the project relevant for both local and international marketers.

OMD Predicts 2014 to focus on trends in marketing

The 2014 edition of the OMD Predicts conference will focus on the aggregation of the three most fundamental trends transforming the practice of marketing. The sixth in the series of events designed to help marketers and media professionals future-proof their strategies, OMD Predicts will explore the way innovation, content and technology are reshaping marketing. Scheduled to take place on November 10, 2014, the conference will be held at Jumeirah Zabeel Saray’s Music Hall and is expected to gather more than 250 delegates.

OMD Predicts will bring international and regional experts to share insights and best practice to help marketers embrace and capitalise on the trends of content, technology and innovation – the three threads that are profoundly altering the way brands communicate with consumers. Guy Hearn, Chief Innovation Officer, Omnicom Media Group APAC, will discuss how showcasing media creativity in brands’ communications will separate the leaders from the followers. He will also highlight how to harness the innovation process and how it impacts advertisers, agencies and the media.

Content is becoming less the context for brand messaging and increasingly the message itself. In keeping with this, Shawn Amos, Founder and CEO of Freshwire, will focus on how brand storytelling and content marketing is evolving to add value to both brands and consumers, particularly in the context of evolving and emerging technologies.

Technology, perhaps the most transformational trend of all, will be the topic of a session presented by Whetson’s Founder, Thimon De Jong. Drawing from his experience on human behaviours, Thimon will explore the three most significant technological shifts that will alter not only brand communications but also business models.

“Planning for the future is never an easy task, but with OMD Predicts, we are aiming to establish a solid foundation from which one can start,” says Nadim Samara, Managing Director, OMD UAE & Lower Gulf. “Thanks to the knowledge and vision shared by this year’s speakers, future-proofing communication strategies will become a lot more achievable and fruitful. Rather than anxiety, this knowledge will allow us to look to the future with agility, anticipation, excitement and confidence.”