Omnicom Media Group expands agency network

New York based marketing agency, Hearts & Science has launched in the Middle East under the umbrella of Omnicom Media Group MENA. Hearts & Science combines personalised marketing with real-time data-led insights to offer a range of services to their clients. Fadi Maktabi, previously Head of Strategy at OMD UAE, will lead the new office at Dubai Media City.

“It’s terrific to see the tremendous momentum continuing unabated with the expansion in the Middle East,” says Scott Hagedorn, Global CEO, Hearts & Science. “Fadi has an impressive track-record and expertise in insights, strategy and innovation, a strong platform on which he can build to leverage that momentum and experience the success Hearts & Science has witnessed in other markets.”

Elie Khouri, CEO, Omnicom Media Group MENA adds, “Hearts & Science will transform the market by redefining the standard for precision and performance.”

APP Media Group to host Young Arab Awards

APP Media Group is set to host the first Young Arab Awards on December 6, 2016 in the UAE. The awards aims to recognise young Arabs for their outstanding achievements in a number of fields including business, science and social media. They will also announce a winner for the Young Arab of the Year Award 2016. Nominees will be shortlisted by a panel of judges, including renowned author, Caher Khazaal, former UK Ambassador to Lebanon, Tom Fletcher and CEO, OMG MENA, Elie Khouri, as well as special guest of honour, Roger Waters from Pink Floyd. Nominations for the awards are currently open and can be made through

“The achievements of young Arabs in the UAE is nothing short of incredible in so many different sectors,” says Caher Khazaal, Author, Confessions of a War Child trilogy.  “Choosing the winners will be no easy task, but we hope this event will give them the recognition they deserve. It is also a huge thrill for us to have Roger Waters on board. He is not just one of the world’s greatest ever musicians but a great philanthropist who has always been a strong supporter of the many regional issues we face.”

Senior Executives promoted at PHD

PHD, a division of Omnicom Media Group MENA, has promoted both its UAE Managing Director and General Manager in Dubai. Elda Choucair, previously Managing Director at PHD UAE, will now take on the role of CEO, PHD MENA which will involve her replicating her performance across new, as well as existing, offices in the region and, on top of this adding to her UAE responsibilities.

Luca Allam, previously General Manager for PHD Dubai, will now take on the role of Managing Director, PHD UAE. In this role, he will utilise his eleven years of experience in media in order to oversee the agency’s offices in both Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

“In Elda’s and Luca’s hands, PHD has gone from strength to strength,” says Elie Khouri, CEO, Omnicom Media Group, MENA. “The talent they’ve attracted and nurtured, the vision that has guided them and the energy they’ve deployed has made PHD the success story it is today. I have no doubt that they will find in their new role even more opportunities to stimulate further growth.”


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.”

Annalect MENA to partner with Ensighten

Omnicom Media Group MENA’s data, technology and analytics division, Annalect MENA, has partnered with enterprise data and tag management company Ensighten, to bring first-party data insights to the region’s advertisers. The partnership aims to help advertisers improve the efficiency and ROI of their brand campaigns. The Ensighten open marketing platform enables brands to collect, own and act on data from everywhere – on-site, off-site, mobile and offline – so that digital marketers can provide personalised experiences in real time to consumers on any device or marketing channel.

“Ensighten’s open marketing platform is changing the way brands collect, own and act on data generated across the customer journey in real time,” says Elie Khouri, CEO, Omnicom Media Group. “We’re very excited at the new opportunities Ensighten’s technology will create for brands here.”

David Saxon, Vice President of Partner Sales and Business Development, Ensighten, adds “In a competitive environment smart and timely actions make all the difference and we’re proud to help Annalect deliver more relevant and personalised consumer experiences across the entire customer journey.”

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.”

Omnicom MENA ranked third best employer in UAE

Omnicom Media Group MENA has been recognised as the third best employer in the UAE by the Great Place to Work® Institute. In its third year to participate in the survey, the Group has moved up four places in the global research and management consultancy’s ranking of the country’s 15 best employers. In its assessment, the Great Place to Work® Institute notes that Omnicom Media Group MENA’s keen focus on work/life balance makes it a leading example of how to integrate health and wellness into a company’s culture.

“As the field widens, staying in the top 15 gets harder every year, and improving our position so significantly is a remarkable feat. It is a very clear endorsement of the policies and practices we have put in place,” says Elie Khouri, CEO, Omnicom Media Group MENA. “This benchmark is a very important factor of our talent management approach and we deeply value not only the feedback but also the inspiration it provides us. The results speak for themselves and we couldn’t be more humbled by the endorsement of our teams.”


Omnicom Media Group award key achievers

With business results that exceeded expectations across many of its operations in 2013, Omnicom Media Group MENA presented two leadership awards to standout staff members. The OMG MENA Leadership Award went to Chadi Farhat, while the Best OMG Office Leader Award was given to Rania Hafez of OMD Egypt.

Previously the general manager of OMD Lebanon, Chadi Farhat quickly made his mark in his first year as the new Regional Executive Director of Investments at Omnicom Media Group MENA. He strengthened and reorganised the investment teams within the group to deliver the strongest results for our clients. Farhat also introduced new processes and working models to increase the effectiveness of the function. By reinforcing the collaboration with all offices, business units and divisions, he enhanced the group’s holistic and integrated approach to clients’ investments.

Rania Hafez, General Manager of OMD’s Cairo office was also recognised for her efforts, despite the market facing significant socio-political unrest. She delivered double-digit growth in billings and grew revenues substantially. Far from being conservative in her approach, Hafez also solidified OMD’s position as Egypt’s only fully integrated media agency after expanding its digital capabilities to include creative and development. What’s more, the office’s awards performance led OMD to being named Communicate’s Media Agency of the Year.

“The energy that our teams put in the pursuit of excellence in every fact of our operations, even in the face of uncertainty, is truly remarkable,” says Elie Khouri, CEO, Omnicom Media Group MENA. “What Chadi and Rania have done is to raise the bar further still and our recognition of their achievements is not only deserved, it also acts as a benchmark and an inspiration for the rest of us.”

OMD named Media Network/Agency of the Year

OMD, part of the Omnicom Media Group, has been named the Media Agency/Network of the Year by Communicate and Campaign Middle East as revealed in both magazines’ latest editions. Consolidating business wins from the previous year as well as retaining or securing 14 new ones in 2013 has demonstrated the value of OMD’s first-mover advantage in digital, performance, social and mobile marketing, as well as analytics.

“OMD has thrived on its culture of innovation and challenging the status quo. This approach has served us well and it keeps on giving,” comments Elie Khouri, CEO of Omnicom Media Group MENA. “It is the relentless spirit among the team that propels OMD upward and forward. Being the media agency of the year is something we aim to achieve every day on every one of our accounts.