By Rebecca Stewart, Trends Editor

February 8, 2019 | 3 min read

Raja Rajamannar, chief marketing and communications officer at Mastercard, has been named as the World Federation of Advertisers’ (WFA) Global Marketer of the Year for 2018.

Rajamannar's win follows on from a bumper 12 months for Mastercard, in which it removed its name from its logo, worked internally and with others on digital transparency and launched its 'Start Something Priceless' social good campaign in 40 countries

Run in partnership with The Drum, Global Marketer of the Year 2018 is designed to celebrate the role that global and regional marketers play in changing their businesses, the industry and society for the better. Rajamannar won following a combined vote by an expert jury and the industry at large, with each accounting for 50% of the final score.

“I’m deeply honoured and humbled. In reality, this recognition should go to my entire team. No one person can do everything by himself or herself and I’m blessed to be able to work with an amazing group of talented professionals,” said Rajamannar.

“No other field has more capability than marketing to impact a company’s brand, its reputation as well as bring about social impact. I feel proud to have been a part of this discipline for more than 30 years”, he added.

Rajamannar takes the crown from 2017 winner and outgoing Unilever marketing boss Keith Weed.

Along with Weed and Rajamannar, four other global marketers were shortlisted for the accolade this year, including: Ukonwa Ojo, chief marketing officer, consumer beauty at Coty; Marc Pritchard, chief brand officer at Procter & Gamble; Syl Saller, chief marketing and innovation officer at Diageo; and Claudia Willvonseder, ex-chief marketing officer at Ikea Group turned Ikea's general manager for its Swiss operations.

All the nominees on the shortlist demonstrated outstanding leadership in evolving their organisation to be more people-centric, working smarter with partners and delivering inspiring work that makes a difference – be that to the business or wider society.

“Being a global marketer is not easy but Raja and his colleagues on the shortlist demonstrate how it is possible to thrive in this role and make a real difference to the business," said Stephan Loerke, chief executive of the WFA.

"Our industry should be proud of what all of the shortlisted chief marketing officers have achieved and use them as an example for the future. Congratulations to them all.”

WFA Global Marketer of the Year Marketer of the Future Mastercard

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