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Leo Burnett’s Michelle Ong takes up CEO role for Dentsu One Malaysia

Dentsu Aegis Network Malaysia (DAN Malaysia) has appointed Michelle Ong (pictured) as CEO of Dentsu One in Malaysia. Coinciding with Ong’s appointment, Atsushi Kurokawa is named vice president of Dentsu One in Malaysia. Both appointments are effective from January 2018. Ong will report to Nicky Lim, CEO of Dentsu Aegis Network Malaysia. Meanwhile, Kurokawa reports to Ong, as well as, Japan’s Dentsu Inc.

With the appointment, Ong will become the first female CEO of Dentsu One Malaysia in the agency’s 12-year history. Prior to this role, Ong was the chief operating officer (COO) of Leo Burnett Malaysia, a position she has held for the past five years. With 25 years of experience in advertising, Ong started out as a rookie account executive at Grey Group, followed by Ogilvy & Mather and Leo Burnett.

She then steadily rose through the ranks to become general manager of McCann Worldgroup Malaysia, and subsequently managing director of McCann Worldgroup in Indonesia. Later on, she spent a year as head of brands at Proton Berhad, Malaysia’s national automotive company, before re-joining the advertising world as Leo Burnett Group Malaysia’s COO.

Meanwhile, Kurokawa was a director in Dentsu Inc. Japan, and he brings 25 years of international experience in advertising. He spent 10 years specialising in global sports marketing, while another 15 years in global creative and marketing business development, of which five of those years he was tasked with corporate management of Dentsu in India, according to DAN Malaysia.

“We’re moving into 2018 with considerable momentum. We have a good track record of new businesses, and these appointments at Dentsu One, along with several other executive leadership changes made earlier within the group, have given us a stronger management team,” Lim said.

Ong said, “At the rate the industry is evolving in today’s digital economy, we cannot afford to fragmentise. Marketers are expecting holistic, integrated marketing solutions from agencies. In this respect, collaboration is so crucial, in order to leverage expertise across the network to cater to marketers’ needs.”

“There will be further disruption, strong competitive activities and clients constantly on the lookout for new ways of working, therefore we will need to be on top of our game right from the start. So with that, I’m geared up for 2018 and looking forward to activate more collaboration across the network,” she added.

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