The fourth set of global inductees to The Drum annual Digerati list – our celebration of the world’s top digital marketers – can now be revealed.
Spanning Silicon Valley to Singapore, the list includes considerable representation from natural digital hotbeds like agencies, new media publishers and social media platforms.
But symbolizing how digital has come to touch so many parts of our lives, you’ll also find top talent from the worlds of banking, retail, sports, food, and music among our cohort.
The list was compiled following reader nominations and curated by The Drum's editorial team. But now, let's meet Thursday's inductees into The Drum Digerati 2019...
David Fischer, chief revenue officer, Facebook
David Fischer has worked for Facebook since 2010, previously serving as Facebook’s vice-president of business and marketing partnerships before being elevated to his current role in 2019.
In his near-decade at Facebook, Fischer has headed up the company’s rapidly growing advertising business while managing its sales and marketing teams globally.
Prior to Facebook, Fischer was vice-president of global online sales and operations at Google, where he built and directed Google’s online sales channel. He has also served as deputy chief of staff of the US Treasury Department and was an associate editor at US News & World Report.
His other accolades include recognition as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum and a Henry Crown Fellow at the Aspen Institute. He was recently named chair of the Ad Council’s board of directors.
Susan Wojcicki, chief executive officer, YouTube
Having joined Google as its 16th employee in 2006, when the search giant bought YouTube, Susan Wojcicki has overseen the video platform and its two billion users since 2014.
The last 12 months have seen her lead a charge to prioritize creators on the platform, doubling the number of YouTube channels with over one million subscribers and upping the number of YouTubers earning five or more figures by 40%. YouTube Music and YouTube Premium have also been scaled up under her watch. Over the course of 2019 she also steered the company through a number of controversies around its content moderation polices.
Wojckiki has often been vocal about equal opportunities for women in the workplace. As the first ever staffer at Google to fall pregnant, Wojcicki has been a strong voice in the fight for paid maternity leave in the US.
Pippa Scaife, commercial director of emerging brands, CNN
Pippa Scaife leads CNN International Commercial’s (CNNIC) emerging brands division. She works with CNNIC’s global sales teams to develop brand solutions and collaborations for advertisers, with a heavy focus on the company’s Great Big Story content marketing platform. In her two-year tenure, she has doubled international brand partnerships and generated “significant” revenue growth, according to the company.
A strong advocate for equality and diversity in advertising, Scaife joined CNN in 2017 from the Box Network. She previously worked in business development for brands such as Spotify and Sony PlayStation.
Nicolas Bidon, chief executive officer, Xaxis
In his role at Xaxis, Nicolas Bidon is responsible for the overall company strategy and P&L across 47 markets in North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America and the Middle East and Africa.
Bidon has been working at the intersection of data, media, and technology for more than 20 years with tenures in San Francisco, London and Switzerland and is passionate about helping global brands leverage cutting-edge technology to achieve the desired outcomes from their digital media investments.
Chris Duncan, managing director, Times Newspapers
It may seem incongruous to have someone with ‘newspapers’ in their title in the Digerati, but Chris Duncan is included here in recognition of the instrumental role he has played in transforming The Times’ legacy business into a digital media heavyweight since being named managing director in November 2016.
This summer, The Times and The Sunday Times announced they had exceeded 300,000 paying digital subscribers, with digital subscriber numbers up 19% year-on-year. Under Duncan’s stewardship, the titles appear to have found the elusive formula for getting readers to pay for news content. “The Times and The Sunday Times continue to show that people value quality journalism and are prepared to pay a premium for news they can trust,” he said.
Karen Boswell, chief experience officer, VMLY&R
Karen Boswell is currently responsible for developing VMLY&R’s experience capability in the EMEA region, working across its client base. Outside the VMLY&R office, Boswell is also the chief executive and founder of THEI.A, a neural network that runs in real-time to provide iterative and personalized immersive experiences ranging from personalized storytelling to tailored wellbeing therapy. She has spent her career working agency-side, including four years at Adam&EveDDB and three years at AKQA, where she worked across some of the industry’s most innovative campaigns including Waitrose’s ‘Live from the Farm’, Virgin Atlantic’s ‘#OneDay’ and the ‘Social Collection’ for M&S.
Adam Singolda, founder, Taboola
Founding Taboola was Adam Singolda’s first job after serving as an officer in the Israel Security Agency for seven years. Singolda established Taboola in 2007, after he came up with the idea to build a search engine in reverse that could cut down time spent searching for content. By 2015, Taboola had raised $157m in funding and established itself as a ubiquitous presence on the web.
In October 2019, Singolda led Taboola’s successful acquisition to its fellow Israeli content recommendation firm, Outbrain, merging the two discovery platforms to become one of the largest digital advertising platforms in the market.
Youssef Ben-Youssef, director of ad platform, Roku
Youssef Ben-Youssef leads advertising business across three business lines for streaming company Roku: programmatic ad platform, data licensing and audience activation. Prior to Roku, Youssef lead the publisher solutions team at Iponweb, where he launched a comprehensive publisher monetization platform. Youssef’s ad tech experience extends to strategy and product roles, as he was the senior director of GTM and strategy operations at AppNexus and Turn. Youssef has an extensive IT and management background, and holds an MBA from Université Laval, and a Masters in Computer Science from Bentley University.
Kristin Lemkau, chief marketing officer, JP Morgan Chase
Kristin Lemkau controls one of the largest marketing budgets in US banking – a responsibility she shoulders after surviving 20 years on Wall Street and a brand-annihilating financial crisis.
Launching into the world with a PR remit, Lemkau is now considered one of the most vocal marketers on the subject of driving financial growth as well as brand. She’s confident in data too, recently pushing through a five-year deal that will see an AI write her brands’ advertising and communications copy through analyzing a database of tagged words and phrases.
This year, Lemkau was named marketer of the year by the Advertising Club of New York.
Brady Brewer, senior vice-president of digital customer experience, Starbucks
In charge of improving digital customer experience for one of the most recognizable brands in the world, Brewer –a certified Starbucks coffee master – previously served as chief operating officer for Starbucks Japan, one of Starbucks’ largest markets, and as senior vice president of marketing and product for the company’s China and Asia Pacific regions.
These moves were preceded by more than a decade of key Starbucks leadership roles that saw him help to define the company’s modern experience, elevate the brand and drive rapid sales growth.
Ben Sutherland, chief digital officer, Diageo
Ben Sutherland is Diageo’s first chief digital officer, having joined the drinks business in 2016 to shape and lead its digital future. His role covers technology, global media partnerships and digital talent, running Diageo’s Centre of Digital Excellence and overseeing strategic investment for the business, whose brands include Johnnie Walker, Baileys, Smirnoff, Guinness and Captain Morgan.
Sutherland is passionate about breaking down the barriers between digital and broader marketing disciplines and sits on Diageo’s Global Marketing Leadership Team. He also leads Diageo’s work to safeguard consumers in the digital space – working with industry bodies such as IARD and the WFA to drive improvements in advertising standards. He previously held leadership roles at MindShare, Rapp, Vizeum and iProspect.
Chris Feng, chief executive officer, Shopee
Shopee is one of the largest e-commerce sites in South East Asia, rivaled only by Alibaba-owned Lazada. At its helm is Chris Feng, who, in his four-year tenure has led the platform to hit a key milestone of $10bn transactions in 2018. Under his guidance, the company launched its own retail event in 2016, called the 9.9 Super Shopping Day, which this year saw 113m deals offered and a peak of 187,606 items sold per minute across the region. Prior to joining Shopee, Feng spent time at Asian e-commerce outfits including Garena Online, Lazada and Zalora.
Dennis Maloney, chief digital officer, Domino’s Pizza
From 1988 to 1995, Dennis Maloney served as a US Navy submarine officer and an instructor of systems engineering at the Naval Academy. Now above sea level, Maloney is still playing with data, but now he serves as senior vice-president and chief digital officer of Domino’s Pizza.
Maloney has spent nearly 10 years at the company, and almost five years in his current position where he is responsible for modernizing Domino’s digital practices. Maloney has helped introduce voice-ordering integrations; emoji ordering, where customers can simply tweet a pizza emoji to place an order; and Zero Click Ordering, where customers place an order simply by opening the Domino’s app.
Nigel Vaz, global chief executive officer, Publicis Sapient
Nigel Vaz had held various leadership positions at Sapient prior to its 2015 acquisition by Publicis Groupe and, earlier this year, was promoted to global chief exec of Publicis Sapient. He also serves on the executive committee of Publicis Groupe and acts as strategic advisor on transformation initiatives to accelerate the businesses of clients including Lloyds Banking Group, BNP Paribas, Carrefour, M&S and Unilever.
In May this year he took up the role of president at the IPA (Institute of Practitioners in Advertising) and he is a board director of The Marketing Society.
Seth Dallaire, chief revenue officer, Instacart
Dallaire spent the last five years leading Amazon’s global ad sales business as vice-president of global advertising sales and marketing. Having joined Amazon in 2012 from Yahoo where he was the vice-president of global accounts and agencies, he drove growth of the company’s advertising business across Amazon.com, its owned and operated properties as well as mobile and Kindle platforms worldwide.
Now at Instacart, which he joined in September, he oversees the grocery delivery company’s brand marketing partnerships business, which allows brands to utilize the platform to better engage with consumers.
He is a board member of the Ad Council and the Interactive Advertising Bureau.
Bob Lord, senior vice-president of cognitive applications, IBM
At IBM, Bob Lord is responsible for the computing giant’s efforts to introduce artificial intelligence tools into business processes across the world. One of the leading authorities on the use of data and emerging technologies for businesses, Lord previously served as the chief executive officer of Razorfish, prior to its acquisition by Publicis, and was later made president of AOL. In 2016, Lord joined IBM as its first ever chief digital officer. His current role sees him integrating AI across all IBM applications, and championing the burgeoning technology’s use in the wider business world.
Victor Knaap, chief executive officer, MediaMonks
The former skipper who sailed the world for a living, Victor Knaap set out in 2003 to try to turn a basement boutique into the most successful creative production company on earth. And that’s pretty much what he’s done, with MediaMonks’ work for agencies, brands and tech companies having since won over 100 Cannes Lions and over 240 FWAs. Which perhaps explains why Martin Sorrell’s S4 Capital outbid WPP in December 2018 to buy the company before merging it with Amsterdam-based influencer marketing agency IMA and, more recently, Silicon Valley digital agency Firewood, further adding to the 1500+ people already working for Knaap across MediaMonks’ 18 offices. Knaap is also a board member and executive director of the S4 Capital Group.
Lubomira Rochet, chief digital officer, L’Oréal
110-year-old beauty giant L’Oréal is putting digital at the heart of its business – and Lubomira Rochet has been a key figure in spearheading the company’s transformation. Since joining the business in 2014, Rochet has driven home the importance of digital throughout the firm’s brands.
A Franco-Bulgarian trained economist, she began her career in 2003 as vice president in charge of strategy and development for Sogeti, a branch of the CapGemini Group. In 2008, she joined Microsoft to manage relationships with startups and the innovation eco-system and in 2010, she became deputy chief executive officer of the digital marketing agency Valtech and head of its southern European operations. At the L’Oréal Group, Rochet is now a member of the group’s executive committee.
Luis Di Como, executive vice-president of global media, Unilever
As executive vice-president of global media, Di Como oversees the second-largest media budget in the world. Responsible for all of Unilever’s global media, his role involves leveraging the company’s massive scale to drive innovation across the industry and leading all media strategic partnerships with the biggest global media players to maximize impact. He also leads the relationship with global media digital players as well as media agencies.
Di Como has spent the majority of his career in Unilever, working across various disciplines. Beyond the day job he chairs the Mobile Marketing Association and is a board member of the World Federation of Advertising.
Jonathan Nelson, chief executive officer, Omnicom Digital
Having helped found Organic, one of the world’s first digital agencies, back in 1993, Jonathan Nelson has been shaping digital marketing ever since. He became part of Omnicom when the holding company acquired his agency in 2003 and, six years later, was announced as chief executive of Omnicom Digital in recognition of digital’s growing piece of Omnicom’s business. He was behind the launch of Omni – a “people-based precision marketing and insights platform, designed to identify and define personalized consumer experiences at scale across creative, media, CRM as well as other Omnicom practice areas” – and sits on numerous boards in the media and finance industries. A passionate musician, he also co-owns two San Francisco music venues and co-produces San Francisco’s Hardly Strictly Bluegrass music festival in Golden Gate Park.
The December issue of The Drum is devoted to the Digerati. Order your copy now and learn about the 100 people we’ve crowned the top digital marketing talent in the world, from Singapore to Silicon Valley, Procter & Gamble to Puma and Lazada to Lego.