Publicis Groupe promotes internal talent to spearhead creative and strategic leadership

Publicis Groupe reinforces its commitment to clients’ transformational growth through two senior appointments across Creative and Strategy. Emir Shafri has been named Chief Creative Officer and Andrew Michau has been named Chief Strategy Officer for Publicis Groupe, both of which are internal promotions that take effect immediately.

Emir Shafri will drive the company’s creative ambition, while Andrew Michau enhances the company’s integrated, and data-led approach to connected solutions. Providing their expertise to clients in the region, both Emir and Andrew will report to Neil Hudspeth, CEO of Publicis Groupe Malaysia & Global Client Leader, APAC.

Emir joined Publicis Groupe Malaysia in May 2019 as Executive Creative Director and has since been instrumental in elevating creative products and helping some big brands win in this platform world. As the new Chief Creative Officer, Emir will develop and head creative communications, bringing together brand-building ideas with a modern approach. He will champion creativity across the company’s network, attracting and nurturing talent and working closely with Publicis Groupe’s larger creative pool. During his time here, he also chaired the Malaysian Kancil Awards, bringing together several industry leaders to revamp the awards, including building the most diverse gender, expertise and independent outfit jury representation in the show’s history.

“It’s been a refreshing experience working alongside and learning from some of the most talented thinkers, storytellers, artists, digital tinkerers, customer experience builders as well as data and human insights detectives over the past few years. I’m excited to write our next chapter with this amazing team by bringing together their diverse skills to help businesses solve their most pressing problems with creativity,” said Emir.

Prior to returning to Malaysia, Emir was Y&R Singapore’s Head of Digital where he led the agency to win its first Agency of the Year, APAC’s top agency in mobile (Spikes Asia 2014) and its highest ranking on Campaign Brief Asia’s Creative Ranking in 10 years. Throughout his career, he has worked with his team to win several awards across several levels, such as at Cannes Lions (including a Chimera Lion, and Singapore’s 1st Titanium and Innovation nominations), an Asian agency’s 1st SXSW Interactive Innovation Award, EFFIES, Spikes Asia, ADFEST, ADSTARS, LIA, New York Festivals, CCA Gong Show and Kancils.

Commenting on Emir’s appointment, Neil said, “Emir’s passion, humankind, and commitment have enriched our most important asset – our people. He is driven by his love for understanding human behaviour, asking “what if” and crafting experiences with the alchemy of technology, creativity and humanity. I am confident that as my creative partner, we will continue to grow and succeed, not only business-wise, but also in terms of expanding our capabilities in CX and innovation to support our clients’ growth acceleration and creative ambitions”.

Another Publicis Groupe veteran, Andrew Michau takes the helm as Chief Strategy Officer where he will drive diverse thinking and functional insights across teams, thereby promoting a culture that delivers extraordinary work. As the company evolves to better integrate a broader strategy and insights team, Andrew will continue to drive and lead strategy for clients, while maintaining close relationships with them. He has a proven ability to understand the nuances of brand-led storytelling, customer experience and earned media, and how they work together to create cutting-edge strategies that come to life across various platforms and communities.

“I am extremely proud to be asked to lead such a talented team of strategists, analysts and transformation specialists. I look forward to accelerating our strategic growth agenda with our clients and continuing to help our teams across our enviable portfolio to deliver world classwork,” said Andrew.

“Andrew’s passion for crafting well-thought-through narratives with increasingly data-fuelled intelligence is highly valued and appropriate, and I am confident that working closely with the rest of the incredible talent we have in our Strategy & Insights team, our agency proposition will go from strength to strength”, said Neil, commenting on Andrew’s appointment.

As the market environment continues to rapidly change, the ability to offer seamless ideas across audiences and channels require agility, reputation, influence and creativity at the core. The new roles are designed to enhance and expand the creative work within Publicis Groupe Malaysia while working across broader creative networks.


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