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Dick van Motman to exit Dentsu Aegis, Isobar’s Jean Lin tipped to replace

Dick van Motman (pictured), is stepping down from his role as Dentsu Aegis Network’s (DAN) global CEO, creative and content to become an advisor to executive chairman and CEO Tim Andree. Marketing understands that Jean Lin (pictured below), DAN’s global CEO, customer experience and commerce, will be taking over the role. She also helms the dual role of Isobar’s global CEO.

Van Motman will aid with the transition in the meantime before leaving DAN at the end of the year. According to DAN, van Motman’s tenure has seen hallmark acquisitions as well as the hiring of strategic talent that helped the agency group to diversify and accelerate business growth. Dynamobrandsindex.com, a recent significant initiative, was the brainchild of van Motman and his team on how to build a new era of brands in the new economy.

Van Motman said business transformation is his passion and after nine countries, regional and global leadership positions, transformation assignments in three holding companies, hallmark mergers and acquisitions and most recently leading a sizeable division of more than 7000 people, he feels the time is right for him to pursue other ventures where he can apply his global experience on a wider canvas.

“Hence, I will be stepping up my involvement with various start ups and (advisory) boards in the new economy space as well as contemplating other opportunities in due time. It has been an exhilarating ride at Dentsu and I have made many friends, mentors, peers and colleagues for whom I have tremendous respect,” he added.

Andree also thanked van Motman for his valued contribution to the business over the past seven years and wished him all the best for his next move. “He leaves us in a strong position on our journey to cultivate a world-class global creative offering that is tech-enabled and ideas-led, to deliver valuable brand and experience transformation for our clients,” he said.

Van Motman was promoted to the role in March this year, and was given the responsibility of developing and growing the creative proposition of DAN globally. In that role, he worked closely with chief creative officer Gordon Bowen and reported to Andree. Before that, he was the global and Asia Pacific president of Dentsu’s creative agencies, as well as CEO of Southeast Asia. Van Motman joined the agency in 2012 from DDB where he was president and CEO of Greater China. He also worked at Leo Burnett and Ogilvy.

Meanwhile, Lin was elevated to the role of Isobar’s global CEO in 2014 from her Asia Pacific CEO role. Lin was the driving force behind Isobar’s expansion in the region. In March this year, she was named global CEO, customer experience and commerce, according to her LinkedIn. Lin started her digital journey by establishing her own digital agency wwwins Consulting in 1999, after beginning her career with Ogilvy Advertising in Taiwan.

The changes come after DAN witnessed key leadership shuffles and a business restructure this year. Most recently, DAN named Ashish Bhasin, CEO of Dentsu Aegis Network Greater South, to the newly-created role of APAC CEO based in Singapore. It also promoted CEO of Isobar Singapore Prakash Kamdar to CEO of DAN Singapore. Meanwhile, CEO of Dentsu Singapore Rosalynn Tay is understood to be currently serving notice.

Meanwhile, Phil Teeman and Susana Tsui left their roles as CEO of Dentsu Aegis Network SEA and CEO of Dentsu Aegis Network China respectively this year. In December last year, DAN witnessed another major leadership change when Takaki Hibino was appointed executive chairman of DAN Asia Pacific, as regional lead Nick Waters moved to London to take on the role of executive chairman of DAN UK and Ireland.

The network also split its Asia Pacific regional business into three clusters from the original five to form Greater South, Greater North, and ANZ. Up until September this year, the Singapore business remained separated from Greater South. However, this changed following Kamdar’s promotion and after Masaya Nakamura, deputy chairman and chief growth officer, APAC took on a new role as CEO, global solutions, DAN, based in Tokyo. As such, it is now part of the Greater South cluster.

It also made another round of job cuts in Singapore in July, with DAN’s spokesperson telling Marketing that while it is “unable to comment on the number as it affects [employees], it is limited”.

This followed a restructure of its media and performance business in Singapore in January this year, with DAN settling on two verticals – Brand Solutions business and One Singapore Media Group. A DAN Client Solutions virtual team was also formed to sit across all brands to drive best practice.

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