Havas chief executive Xavier Rees has kicked off the new year with a significantly expanded remit after being elevated to the role of Helia chief executive, which will see him assume responsibility for the customer engagement and data agency while continuing to lead the helm of Havas.
Rees will carry out these additional duties from 31 January following the departure of incumbent Tash Whitmey to Tesco with the intention of engendering greater collaboration between both arms of the business, which already collaborate on shared clients such as Heathrow, Unilever and GSK.
Havas chairman Chris Hirst commented: “Havas London has seen a huge upturn in its trajectory since Xav and his team took over. Combined with his experience across a number of different specialisms, and the fact this appointment will encourage even greater integration between our agencies, I honestly can’t think of anyone better for the Helia job.”
Rees added: “The Havas Helia story is a special one and I’m excited to help write its next chapter. We have entered a golden period for the discipline of customer engagement and no other agency has a better pedigree to help brands capitalise on this opportunity."
Rees first joined Havas as chief executive of Havas London in 2016 following a six-year spell as group managing director at Adam&Eve/DDB. He has previously worked with creative agencies BBH and Grey, with experience in senior management extending through advertising, digital and direct marketing.