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People on the move: Hires and departures at AOL, Bauer Media, Outbrain, Rubicon Project and more

Tim Mahlman, AOL / AOL

This week has seen another wave of appointments and departures at brands, media owners and agencies. The Drum has rounded up the key hires below.


AOL has announced the appointment of Tim Mahlman (pictured) as president of its ad tech unit AOL Platforms, effectively succeeding Bob Lord who left to join IBM earlier this year.

In this new role, Mahlman head up a team of 1,400, and will be responsible for developing and executing AOL’s offering to advertisers and publishers, as well as differentiating its data products. He will report directly to AOL chief Tim Armstrong.

In addition, the AOL Platforms team has made new executive additions including Matt Gillis as named SVP publisher platforms and Jay Seideman named as senior vice-president, advertising platforms. Both will report directly to Mahlman.

Bauer Media

Bauer Media has appointed Nicola Bates as managing director of its newly-created Hobbies portfolio. This brings together a wide variety of titles; Country Walking, Trail magazine, Trail Running, Bird Watching, Digital Photo and Practical Photography, Steam Railway and Model Rail, Your Horse, Practical Fishkeeping and Pet Product Marketing and their brand extensions, including the Your Horse Live event.

Bates has previously worked in marketing and circulation roles and as a publisher for Dennis publishing in London, during which time she launched a number of new websites and magazines, including Cyclist.

In addition, Patrick Horton is to take on an expanded role as managing director of Bauer’s Music, Film and Sports titles with responsibility for Empire, Mojo, Q and Kerrang! in addition to angling, golf and football brands, including Angling Times and Today's Golfer.

Meanwhile, Kim Slaney, meanwhile, is to become managing director of Leisure and Maturity, incorporating Bauer's 50+ brand Yours in addition to gardening and leisure brands including Garden News.


Outbrain has promoted its UK managing director Stephanie Himoff to managing director Northern Europe.

Himoff joined the UK team in 2012 and has been instrumental to growing the business working with publishers such as BBC, Sky, Guardian, Telegraph among many others.

Commenting on her appointment, Himoff said: “By strengthening our leadership structure across Europe, we will aggregate the experience garnered from each unique market we operate in, increase opportunities for pan-European collaboration and position ourselves optimally for continued growth in the region.

Rubicon Project and Adform

In a move that signifies its lofty ambitions, Adform has announced the dual appointment of Jay Stevens and Oliver Whitten (both formerly of Rubicon Project) to C-level roles within the Denmark-based outfit.

Jay Stevens and Oliver Whitten have joined Adform’s executive team, serving as chief revenue officer and chief operating officer respectively. Both played a significant role in the global expansion of former employers Rubicon Project, which they both vacated recently.

Stevens begins his role immediately, while Whitten will formally join in August, following the completion of his duties at Rubicon Project (as exclusively revealed by The Drum earlier this week), with both reporting directly to Adform chief executive Gustav Mellentin upon assumption of their duties.

The Lad Bible Group

The Lad Bible Group has recruited the former European digital chief of PR group Weber Shandwick, Adam Clyne, to serve as its chief operating officer ahead of a big Cannes advertising drive.

Reporting to chief executive and founder Solly Solomou, Clyne is tasked with driving the strategic growth of The Lad Bible Group and running the day-to-day operations of the company.

Solly Solomou, chief executive and co-founder of the business, said: "Adam brings a breadth of operational and digital experience that will help take the Lad Bible Group to the next stage of our evolution. He will help us build on a period of strong growth."

Clyne said: "We have an opportunity to hugely scale this business across categories and borders. I am looking forward to being part of the team that makes this happen."

McCann Worldgroup

McCann Worldgroup has promoted Chris Macdonald, who currently leads the agency’s New York office, to president of McCann North America.

In his new role, he will still be responsible for leading McCann New York but will also lead other shops within the agency group including San Francisco’s TwoFifteenMcCann, Hispanic agency Casanova McCann and Canada’s MacLaren McCann. He will report to McCann Worldgroup president Luca Lindner.

Before joining the agency’s New York shop as president in 2013, Macdonald served as chief executive of McCann London. Under his leadership in New York, McCann has won clients including the New York State Lottery, Choice Hotels and MGM Resorts.


DigitasLBi has promoted UK marketing and communications director Julia Conroy to oversee both disciplines in its international markets.

She is tasked with growing the agency’s brand in all its markets outside the US – Europe, Asia-Pacific, the Middle East and Africa – while also continuing to run PR and marketing in the UK.

Conroy will report to Fern Miller, who became the agency’s international chief marketing officer last December.

Geometry Global

Andrew Dougan is to join Geometry Global in the newly created role of head of experiential and growth.

Dougan, formerly managing director of experiential agency Energy, will report directly to chief executive Sarah Todd and sit on the executive management team. Todd and Dougan previously worked together at G2, which merged with OgilvyOne and JWT Action in 2013 to form Geometry Global.

“With brand experiences being so important in inspiring engagement and selection, Andy will bring experiential magic across the customer journey, including shopper marketing, retail and store design. His incredible multi-market skill will enable our clients to identify how to win and deliver inspiring experiences across borders that convert people, and, create contagious excitement that gets talks about far and wide,” said Todd.

Doner London

Doner London has bolstered its senior team with four new appointments, naming Lucy Solomon, as client services director; Charlie Rowe as head of design; Davinia Ballin as business director and Caroline Gorge as planner.

The creative shop said its bringing more staff on board following the launch of a multi-million global campaign for Italian footwear brand Geox.

Commenting on the appointments Nick Constantinou, managing director at Doner London said: “I’m delighted we’ve secured four brilliant people across creative, strategic and client service disciplines to help us create and execute ideas that move people.

“All four offer a wealth of experience working with some of the best brands in the world. With their expertise we can ensure our clients remain relevant."

Brand Union

WPP-owned global brand strategy and design agency, Brand Union, has announced the appointment of Alex Clegg as the new UK chief executive.

Clegg will lead the UK team, providing leadership as the agency focuses on ambitious growth plans.

He is an industry veteran having previously held strategic roles at Saatchi & Saatchi, Ammirati Puris Lintas and most recently chief executive of Ogilvy Group Vietnam. With more than two decades experience Clegg’s career has spanned the entire breadth of the brand and communications business.

His appointment follows the recent hire of John Shaw to the newly-created role of chief product officer, responsible for overseeing the agency’s product, from strategy and creative to design and technology.


Digital marketing agency Jellyfish has promoted senior social and outreach manager Hannah Rainford to the role of associate director of social media.

In her new role, Rainford will be overseeing the social activity across some of the agency’s largest and most complex accounts. She will also be tasked with helping to evolve the creative shop’s growing social, content and outreach offering in conjunction with the global management team.

Rainford will continue to run social media training courses for Jellyfish Training as well as nurture existing and new relationships with technology partners.

Tribal Worldwide

Tribal Worldwide London has promoted Victoria Buchanan to executive creative director to work alongside fellow executive creative director Simon Poett.

Buchanan will hold a position on the executive board, reporting to Tom Roberts, managing director. She has been at the agency for 16 years and is responsible for award-winning campaigns across Volkswagen, O2 and Guinness.

A passionate mentor and champion for diversity and encouraging women in creative and tech positions in the industry, Buchanan will continue to lead innovation and collaboration at Tribal Worldwide London alongside Simon Poett, her promotion begins with immediate effect.


Following the expansion of its Labstore Europe shopper marketing business,Y&R has appointed a new leadership team to drive network integration and accelerate growth.

The network has appointed Daniel Pownall, the founder of creative boutique Mr Nice, to the new role of executive creative director of Labstore Europe.

It has also promoted Martin Wolf, previously Labstore’s strategy chief in Vienna, to the role of managing director of Labstore Europe.

Pownall is responsible for co-ordinating all creative activity for Labstore across Europe and will work to build its Madrid agency into a shopper design and communications hub for other offices in the network.

Wolf, who will continue to drive shopper strategy out of Labstore’s Vienna office, will now also be responsible for the strategic and business development of Labstore Europe offices in nine countries.


Global media agency Mindshare UK has announced the appointment of Adam Whittles and Graham Ridley as joint business directors of the SEO and content marketing team. Both Whittles and Ridley will be reporting into Jenny Kirby, managing partner at Mindshare UK who heads up Performance.

Ridley joins Mindshare following a period heading up John Lewis’ SEO division, which saw a double digit increase in site visibility. Prior to this, he worked at Greenlight Digital where he led the SEO strategy for large scale clients, including Currys, Next, Guardian Jobs and RS Components.

Whittles, meanwhile, joins the team after working with Mindshare’s sister agency, Maxus, where he was responsible for driving global SEO strategy for clients. In 2012, he was an SEO consultant at Ayima, a specialist digital marketing agency, working on clients such as, M&S, Aviva and PartyGaming.

Together, the duo will share responsibilities for developing Mindshare’s SEO proposition in line with new opportunities they see in content marketing and its role in increasing brand visibility.


PR agency Finn has announced the opening of an office in London and the appointment of Matt Bourn as partner and director, London.

The new office, which opens on 4 July, will extend Finn's corporate, trade and consumer PR services to media brands, as well as bringing new content and platform expertise to the agency’s existing clients.

Bourn is the former managing director of Braben and, most recently, senior vice-president Europe of MWW PR's media practice, where he has built a client base including Bloomberg Media, Sky Media and the Content Marketing Association.


Customer acquisition and engagement agency Stack, part of the MSQ Partners group of agencies, has hired Suzy Ray as its new business director.

In her new role, Ray will report directly to Stack’s chief executive Ben Stephens, and will lead new business and marketing at the agency, which counts Peugeot, Citroën and Beiersdorf amongst its clients.

Ben Stephens, chief executive of Stack, said: “We have made fundamental changes to Stack in the last twelve months, with over 20 hires and an expanded management team, in order to build a modern customer acquisition and engagement agency. Suzy is a great addition to our team, bringing a wealth of marketing experience with her.”

Want to get your career on the move? Check out The Drum Job page and follow @TheDrumJobs for updates.

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