Havas Group Singapore has appointed Joseph Chua (pictured) as general manager with immediate effect as the agency looks to accelerate integration. Reporting to Jacqui Lim, CEO, Havas Group Singapore, Chua’s appointment comes as part of a management structure which aims to bring together creative, media, digital and public relations under the Havas Village umbrella.
His remit will cover the creative side of the business with a focus on client service, strategic thinking, innovation and effectiveness, leveraging the integrated capabilities of Havas Group Singapore. Prior to the move, David Tay was general manager at Havas Worldwide, and has since moved to Geometry Global Indonesia.
Prior to taking on the role at Havas, Chua was APAC chief operation officer at digital agency, Resn Asia. Working with clients such as Adidas Originals and Huawei, Chua was responsible for the agency’s strategic growth and launch in China. Previously, he worked with J.Walter Thompson and Leo Burnett in multiple offices across clients such as CPF Board Singapore, Nikon, Changi Airport, Unilever and P&G, to name a few.
In a statement, Lim said that talent is naturally, a key component of the agency’s model as it believes its success as a network is directly proportional to the strength of its people.
“Chua has a proven track record of being a successful leader and his extensive experience across China, Singapore and Southeast Asia will be invaluable in enhancing our creative product. I am delighted to welcome him to the team and confident that his expertise will value-add to our ongoing efforts to make Havas Group’s integrated offering resonate in the industry,” she added.
“Havas Group’s depth of communication offerings married with Vivendi’s (parent company) content prowess will enable us to better serve the ambitions of the modern marketer. I am thankful for the opportunity and excited to shape the agency’s future-forward vision,” Chua said.
In a conversation with Marketing, Chua addressed the key issues plaguing creative scene in Singapore, which includes the commoditisation of the creative output which leads to lower prices and tight margins. He said: “We don’t attract the best of graduating talent every year – as they have a plethora of options beyond the traditional 4As.”
Chua is also of the view that [creatives] have “lost a voice in the C-suite and the boardroom (respect), that is being dominated by consulting”. The last issue he highlighted was data.
“Data is important, but a data-only strategy has taken precedent over good intuition and bravery. Data alone is a dangerous precedent for this industry,” Chua added.