IPG’s UM was named Adweek’s 2015 Media Agency of the Year in February after winning J&J, Coca-Cola, CVS and McCormick in the spate of reviews known colloquially as “Mediapalooza” or “The Year of the Pitch.”
But now, the agency is reorganizing its North American network. President Kasha Cacy has been promoted to U.S. CEO after leading several successful pitches and promoting UM’s efforts to improve its targeting with data.
UM global CEO Daryl Lee called Cacy “a superstar” and told Adweek, “What we are doing is recognizing and reinforcing the U.S. leadership that has been so successful over the past year.”
Three UM executives also have been promoted to serve as presidents of their respective geographic regions. Global CMO Lynn Lewis will lead the East Coast region, while UM Detroit evp and general manager Scott Russell will be president of the network’s central region. Karen Hunt, evp and global managing partner, will manage West Coast operations.
“Lots of attention has been paid to me and Kasha,” Lee said, “but all of these people played a key role in our success. At the same time, we are expecting them to help us maintain that momentum.”
He added that Lewis “is now running all clients on the East Coast, including building the Coca-Cola Connection Studio into the same sort of innovation engine that J3 always was. Russell is looking for expansion opportunities into markets like Chicago. Hunt, who leads Sony in our L.A. office, will [also] be president of San Francisco and handle all of our clients there.”
Of the West Coast offices, Lee said, “I like the idea of joining S.F. and L.A. into one community, creating a marriage between entertainment and tech innovation.”
An internal memo Lee sent to the entire UM staff earlier this month concluded, “This is one of the most talented leadership teams in the agency business … in any agency … anywhere. I know that you are all as excited as I am to see where this dream team takes UM in 2016 and beyond.”
Lee also pointed out that three of the four executives promoted this round happen to be women. “That’s not by design,” he said, “but it’s a good thing.”