Dentsu’s Carat raids Essence for new UK CEO

Dentsu’s Carat has raided WPP’s Essence for a new CEO, former EMEA boss Clare Chapman (below.)

Digital-heavy Essence has become something of a golf standard for recruiting, losing Ali Reed to Omnicom’s PHD as CEO and chief product officer Mark Syal to Brainlabs.

Chapman replaces Jo Sutherland who left last year. Dentsu is also looking for a new UK and Ireland CEO after Euan Jarvie left this week.

Chapman will report to Dentsu UK and Ireland CEO of media Hamish Nicklin. Nicklin says: “I wanted someone who understood planning and strategy, and the media landscape, but was also comfortable talking about trends in data and tech.”

Chapman says she’s “excited to join the world’s first media agency to lead the agency through its next period of growth.”

The issue at Carat UK is that it hasn’t been growing as fast as some of its rivals although it remains the UK’s fourth-biggest media agency. Once the fabled home of “gorillas with calculators,” the media agency world has moved on, with Carat looking in need of a refresh.

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