Eugene Cheong, former Ogilvy APAC creative chief, has joined DDB Asia as chief creative officer. He will work alongside Asia CEO David Tang to support its offices in China, Hong Kong, Seoul and Singapore on global and big local brands growing across Asia. Over the past month, Cheong (pictured) wasted no time getting into his new role and has already worked with adam&eveDDB and DDB offices in Chicago, Paris, Shanghai, Seoul, and Hong Kong across major clients and pitches.
Cheong said he is dumbfounded that he has not met Tang until now. "He's the planning mirror image of me and we are going to have a boatload of rip-roaring fun. That's the priority. And while we are at it, we are going to create Asia's most formidable agency," Cheong added.
Meanwhile, Tang said it is an exhilarating time for DDB in Asia. "Under the banner of 'Unexpected Works', we are gearing up on creative firepower to drive really effective work for clients. We are excited to have Cheong join us - he's not just a creative great, he's a warhorse and a gentleman," Tang added.
Cheong spent a decade as Ogilvy's APAC creative chief before leaving in 2019. Prior to his departure from Ogilvy, Cheong was reported to be transitioning to a new role that was being finalised in joint conversations with Ogilvy and WPP. At the same time, Reed Collins and Sonal Dabral were appointed to lead the agency’s creative efforts throughout Asia Pacific. A quick check by MARKETING-INTERACTIVE found that Dabral left Ogilvy in 2020 while Collins is now Ogilvy's APAC chief creative officer, according to their LinkedIn profiles. Over 30 years in the industry, Cheong has worked with some of the biggest brands in the world, including Coca-Cola, Guinness, Singtel, Huawei, SC Johnson and Shangri-La Hotels.
Subsequently, Cheong founded his own agency named e in November which allied with creative independent Blak Labs to offer creative, tech, media and production firepower. Moving forward, e will be managed and wholly-owned by Blak Labs. E has worked with brands including Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts, Singapore National Eye Centre, and Natura Malaysia.
Cheong said previously in 2020 that he sees more strategic opportunities in the smaller, nimbler agency model. "In the last 18 months, I’ve worked with the likes of Gut Brazil and Blak Labs and it’s plain as day that smaller, creative-led agencies move 10 times faster and make work 10 times fresher than big networks,” Cheong explained previously.
Charlie Blower, co-founder and managing partner of Blak Labs told MARKETING-INTERACTIVE: "We’ve had a lot of fun working with Eugene. We wish him all the best with his next step."
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