Blue 449 CEO John Preston becomes chairman of Publicis Media Australia

The CEO of media agency Blue 449 has been promoted to the newly created role of chairman of Publicis Media Australia.

Preston founded Match Media in 2003 and then sold it to Publicis Media in 2014, before it rebranded to Blue 449 in 2016. He will remain as Blue 449 CEO until the end of the year.

Publicis Media CEO Matt James with Preston

Preston will work alongside CEO of Publicis Media Matt James to “support the Publicis Media board and James at a strategic business level both or the group and its clients”.

Publicis stressed James will continue to have full strategic, operational and financial responsibility of Publicis Media, overseeing Starcom, Zenith, Spark Foundry, Blue 449 and Performics.

Preston said he was delighted to take on the broader role.

“I am delighted to be offered the opportunity to contribute in a broader role with Publicis Media. My role will be to bring an independent and fresh perspective to decision-making, working with Matt James to develop strategies to drive Publicis Media forward,” he said.

James said he looks forward to working with Preston to further develop Publicis Media’s success.

“John has been a critical part of the Publicis Media team since the acquisition of Match Media, and with Duncan Parfitt promoted to managing director of Blue 449 last year, this gives us the opportunity to not only evolve John’s role but to harness his 30-year experience and success in supporting the ongoing development of Publicis Media,” he said.

“John is one of Australia’s most respected media professionals, with a wealth of knowledge, an entrepreneurial spirit and proven leadership skills. I have no doubt he will bring a valuable and positive perspective to our strategic direction and I look forward to working with him to further develop Publicis Media Australia’s success.”


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