WPP’s biggest media agency EssenceMediaCom seems to have morphed into EssenceMediacomX, which may indicate that the branding for the merger of the two agencies 18 months or so ago has not been an unvarnished success. What the ‘X’ means we know not (surely it’s not a homage to Elon Musk) although people seem to use it these days to emphasise ‘performance.’
One gets the impression that the Essence tech-savvy stardust. which put it ahead of the bigger MediaCom in the merger, has not been as potent as hoped.
Its new abbreviation – EMX – is less of a mouthful anyway.
It’s hard to know how it’s performing too. Being so big it picks up new business but also has a lot of account defending to do.
And it’s ringing the changes with EMX CEO Ryan Storrar off to head GroupM Nexus UK and EMEA as CEO and Clare Chapman, until recently CEO of Carat UK, returning to the WPP fold as EMX CEO (both below.) GroupM Nexus is described as: “the industry’s largest community of performance marketing experts designed to drive performance and innovation at scale for GroupM’s agencies and clients.” Stuff like addressable TV and the like. Anyway worldwide there are 8,000 of them.
Storrar says: “Performance and growth are critical for our clients to keep them ahead of the curve. So, I’m excited to lead GroupM Nexus in EMEA and the UK, maintaining established client relationships and forging new ones by delivering transformative impact to their businesses. And having worked with Clare for a number of years, I couldn’t think of anyone better to hand over the EMX reigns to.”
Chapman says: “I’m thrilled to be rejoining GroupM to lead EMX in the UK. The agency is packed full of extraordinary talent who love nothing more than to challenge, push and innovate, and I’m honoured to help them further develop their skills and careers in tandem with delivering ever more successful solutions for our clients’ businesses.”
Chapman seems to have done a good job at Carat but she’s one of a number of high level executives to leave since owner Dentsu dispensed with the services of Dentsu International boss Wendy Clark (and, indeed, with Dentsu International itself), bringing the empire under more direct Japanese control.
As for WPP’s GroupM it does seem rather enmeshed in a form of naming origami that must confuse clients as much as everybody else. Who’s actually the performance specialist, EMX or Nexus?
So has the ‘X’ introduced welcome clarity? Doesn’t seem to be working for Musk.
EssenceMediacom says: There seems to be a misunderstanding regarding EssenceMediacomX, it is separate to EssenceMediacom
EssenceMediacomX is kept operationally separate due to client conflict – just in the UK. Post merger, both agencies have greater access to tools, resources, and insights but separate operational client teams. Kate Rowlinson is CEO of EssenceMediacom, Clare is taking over Ryan who is EMX CEO.
Both EssenceMediacom and EssenceMediacomX combine Essence’s performance, data, analytics, and creative technology DNA with MediaCom’s scaled multichannel audience planning and strategic media expertise.