Su­nil John to lead new WPP agency

Campaign Middle East - - FRONT PAGE - By Austyn Al­li­son

The Asda’a founder and CEO will be­come Mid­dle East pres­i­dent of Bur­son Cohn & Wolfe as PR agen­cies merge glob­ally.

Com­mu­ni­ca­tions com­pany hold­ing group WPP is to merge two of its PR agen­cies, Bur­son-Marsteller and Cohn & Wolfe. The new firm will be called Bur­son Cohn & Wolfe.

They are rep­re­sented in the MENA re­gion by Asda’a Bur­son-Marsteller and BPG Cohn & Wolfe.

Su­nil John, the founder and CEO of Asda’a, will be­come pres­i­dent of BCW’s Mid­dle East op­er­a­tions. Asda’a, founded in 2000, has been part of the Bur­son-Marsteller net­work since WPP ac­quired a ma­jor­ity stake in 2008.

John said: “With a pop­u­la­tion of 350 mil­lion peo­ple, some 60 per cent of whom are un­der the age of 30, the Mid­dle East is a dy­namic re­gion poised for ex­cep­tional growth across all sec­tors and mar­kets. The scale of the new BCW net­work, our fo­cus on ever greater in­te­gra­tion, and now our flex­i­bil­ity as an in­de­pen­dent re­gional en­tity will give us a dis­tinct ad­van­tage in pur­su­ing ex­cit­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties across the re­gion.”

Cohn & Wolfe has been part of the BPG net­work since it took a mi­nor­ity stake in BPG PR in 2013. The brand had pre­vi­ously been in the re­gion un­der Grey Group.

Avi Bho­jani, CEO of the BPG hold­ing group, told Cam­paign: “The BPG Group has been one of the pre- em­i­nent lo­cal mar­ket­ing ser­vices agen­cies in the re­gion since its in­cep­tion in 1980, and dur­ing our 38 year his­tory we have part­nered with a num­ber of WPP and other in­ter­na­tional en­ti­ties while main­tain­ing our op­er­at­ing in­de­pen­dence.

“We are proud to have had the Cohn & Wolfe suf­fix to our suc­cess­ful PR prac­tice in re­cent years. We re­main both to­day and for the fu­ture a strong and pow­er­ful PR prac­tice that has been op­er­at­ing in the re­gion and grow­ing since 1995, when we started due to the needs of the Dubai Shop­ping Fes­ti­val.

“What­ever fu­ture di­rec­tion WPP may choose to take with the merger of its com­pa­nies, at BPG we will con­tinue to de­liver best- in- class ex­e­cu­tion and in­no­va­tive in­te­grated mar­ket­ing so­lu­tions for our lo­cal, re­gional and in­ter­na­tional clients. Our team and re­gional sup­port in­fra­struc­ture re­main un­changed, and we con­tinue to have ac­cess to global best prac­tices.

“And we would like to con­firm that the BPG Group is not look­ing at any merger or ac­qui­si­tion at this stage.”

Su­nil John: Asda’a CEO be­comes pres­i­dent of BCW Mid­dle East

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