Oglivy ASEAN creative chief gets contract terminated over misconduct issues

Ogilvy has confirmed to Marketing that its ASEAN chief creative officer Ajab Samrai (pictured) has been terminated from his position over "misconduct".

In a memo seen by Marketing, written by Ken Wertime Ogilvy Asia Pacific co-chief executive officer, he said there was a complaint about Samrai's behaviour, which led to an internal investigation.

"Having investigated the complaint, and carefully reviewed the findings with outside counsel, we concluded that Samrai’s behavior was in breach of his terms of employment and Ogilvy’s code of conduct. We have terminated his employment, effective immediately," he said. He added that the management team will be "communicating further as necessary" with various markets and Ogilvy teams regarding the creative responsibilities that Samrai has held to date.

Samrai was promoted to the role earlier this year where he was charged to take on the overall creative leadership for Ogilvy ASEAN, relocating to Singapore. Prior to the move, he was chief creative officer for Ogilvy Japan, a role he took on in 2013.

This is not the first behaviour-led misconduct Ogilvy has had to face. In June, Ogilvy worldwide chief creative officer Tham Khai Meng was let go from the role with immediate effect. The move came on the back of internal company investigations which saw Tham violating company policies after employee complaints surrounding his behaviour. In an internal memo seen by Marketing at that time, Ogilvy worldwide chief executive John Seifert added that the complaints were major enough to employ legal counsel for investigation. After reviewing the findings of said investigation, Seifert and agency partners found Tham’s behaviour to be “a clear breach of [its] company values and code of conduct”.