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.”

Changes to Omnicom Media Group leadership

Omnicom Media Group Middle East and North Africa (MENA) has named new leaders for its analytics division, Annalect, as well as its programmatic trading desk, Accuen. Both companies will now report to recently promoted Executive Director of Specialist Companies, Dimitri Metaxas, who will be managing Resolution as well as Annalect and Accuen. Raouf Ketani has also joined Annalect MENA as Business Unit Director, from Annalect UK, where he will be working closely with the analytics and audience measurement specialists at OMD and PHD and the team at Annalect.

Matyas Csendes has been welcomed to the Omnicom group as Head of Accuen and he will be bringing with him over 10 years of digital marketing experience to elevate the role of the trading desk and enhance clients’ programmatic executions. Accuen also welcomed Bushair Muhammadunni to the role of Head of Inventory, a newly created role in which he will focus on improving the variety of publishers with which the group works.

“There is much demand for these services in which we have invested heavily over the past decade,” says Dimitri. “Raouf, Matyas and Bushair are here to stimulate further growth with their expertise in their respective fields. The industry’s use of data and automation will keep on rising. Hence, we will increase our momentum and dedication to these areas to provide our agencies’ teams with the best capabilities for future-proofing their clients’ businesses.”

Integral-OMG publishes paper on mobile devices

Integral-OMG, the research arm of Omnicom Media Group MENA, has partnered with specialist digital marketing agency Resolution and Google to produce a comprehensive mobile white paper, ‘Upward Mobility: Reflecting on the Growth of Mobile in MENA.’

Integral-OMG’s research shows that an average smartphone user in the region currently spends upwards of four hours per day on these devices. Google reports that consumers in the UAE have an average of three internet-enabled devices and that mobile devices account for 50 percent of YouTube viewership in Saudi Arabia. Advertisers are regarding it more and more as a valuable medium with plans for greater investments; by 2020, Omnicom Media Group estimates that 58 percent of all digital investments in the region will be on mobile.

‘Upward Mobility’ provides further insights on consumer behavior around the device, the emergence of the second screen in television consumption and the rise of the mobile transactions in the region. While there is a lag, both globally and regionally, between users’ adoption of the medium and that of advertisers and publishers, this gap is being bridged over time. The paper outlines what changes need to take place for all parties to realise the full potential of this ubiquitous platform.

“Our latest white paper takes a closer look at the state of mobile in the region and analyses the implications on the communications industry,” says Ziad Skaff, Regional Executive Director – Research and Insights, Omnicom Media Group MENA. “It not only goes beyond the top-line penetration and usage figures, but also explores the behaviours of users, advertisers and publishers. Mobile devices will continue to transform the way we target and communicate with consumers. In order to capitalise on the opportunities presented by the media, the mindset of the industry has to similarly evolve.”

Wassim Kabbara, Head of E-commerce, Retail and Local at Google MENA adds, “The region has one of the highest number of smartphone users in the world. With more than half of search queries and YouTube views coming from mobile, and 90 percent of users who are online daily on their devices, the opportunities are endless. One of our top priorities in MENA is to help businesses become mobile leaders in their own right, offer best practices and help them innovate through this medium beyond just advertising.”

OMG wins at MENA Digital Awards 2014

Omnicom Media Group MENA has announced wins for its agencies OMD, PHD and Resolution at the inaugural MENA Digital Awards 2014. The awards were held on April 23 as part of the Digital Media Forum 2014, and were located at the One & Only Royal Mirage, Dubai. The MENA Digital Awards are fully dedicated to excellence in the digital sector, and judged by an independent panel recognising achievements in planning, creativity, innovation and effectiveness.

Together, the three agencies received 16 of the 36 awards, which were categorised gold, silver and bronze. OMD’s work won gold in the ‘Best Use of Video’, ‘Best Use of Social Media’ and ‘Best Integrated Digital Campaign’ categories for work with Pepsi, along with a further three silver and two bronze trophies for 7UP, Pepsi and Persil.

Resolution won a total of seven awards, including gold in the ‘Best Integrated Digital Campaign’ for The X Factor Arabia and ‘Best Use of Mobile’ for HTC, jointly with OMD. The digital marketing agency was also awarded silver in the ‘Best Application (mobile/tablet)’ category for The X Factor Arabia, and bronze in ‘The Best Use of Social Media’, ‘Best Search Marketing Campaign’ and ‘Best Performance Campaign’ categories for MasterChef Arabia, beIN Sports (joint with OMD) and Hyatt Hotels and Resorts (jointly with PHD).

PHD received gold in the ‘Best Use of Mobile’ for its work on Sony’s Xperia Z.

“Credible specialist digital awards were long overdue in the region, and we applaud the creation of the MENA Digital Awards to recognise the best in digital marketing across all facets,” says Elie Khouri, CEO, Omnicom Media Group MENA. “Digital has never been a side show for us and the performance of our group in this field has been comprehensively demonstrated. I congratulate all our awarded teams and clients on this achievement and look forward to continuing this trend in the coming years.”