Dentsu Aegis Network appoints Sue Squillace as CEO of Carat

Spark Foundry’s CEO Sue Squillace is set to jump ship from the Publicis Groupe for Dentsu Aegis Network’s Carat.

Squillace will fill the CEO void at Carat, which was left vacant in September last year when Paul Brooks resigned.

Squillace begins her new role in September

Following Brooks’ departure, Carat said the CEO role would not be immediately replaced, with the agency instead promoting DAN’s chief client solutions officer, Simon Williams, into the role of national managing director.

From September, however, Squillace will come on board as Carat CEO, reporting to DAN’s CEO Henry Tajer, and representing Carat on the DAN ANZ board.

A DAN spokesperson told Mumbrella Williams would retain his role as national MD and report into Squillace once she begins her run as CEO.

Tajer was enthusiastic about Squillace’s appointment.

“Sue is a fantastic person,” he said in a statement. “I can’t wait to see her make an impact at Carat and DAN. I am really excited to be working with her again. This is an important appointment for not only Carat, but the wider network. Sue’s credibility and commitment to putting people at the centre of everything, makes her the ideal person to propel Carat into the future.”

Squillace added: “I am excited to lead the team at Carat and join Dentsu Aegis Network at such a critical and exciting time. I look forward to getting to know and working together with the team, clients and partners on the next stage of the Carat journey.

“I would also like to thank Publicis Groupe for the many opportunities over the last 10 years, in particular the opportunity to launch and build a new agency. I wish all my friends at Spark Foundry continued success.”

Publicis Media was unable to comment on plans for Squillace’s replacement at Spark Foundry, but did issue a statement to Mumbrella wishing her well.

“We would like to thank Sue for her leadership and commitment to the business, having dedicated more than a decade of her career at the company. We wish Sue the absolute best that life has to offer as she embarks on her next journey,” John Preston, Publicis Media ANZ chairman said.

Squillace’s appointment to Carat comes as Tajer continues to make his mark on the Dentsu Aegis Network after a tumultuous 12 months.

The agency recently appointed Alex Smith as client lead, Marnie McKeown as head of content services and media integration, and Dick Laurie as strategy director.

Tom Andrews also returned to Carat in April to head up the $19.4m Disney account, and Carat Sydney’s head of strategy Danni Wright was promoted to a national role.

Over the past year, however, it lost CEO Paul Brooks (joining Nine), CMO Andrea Rule (moving to LinkedIn), head of strategy Alex James (shifting to a similar role at PHD), head of digital Michael Corry (jumping ship to 303 Mullen Lowe), and the former head of the Disney account, Laura Bartal (becoming partner at Lacuna).

The agency also lost a number of key clients, including the $40m Mondelēz International account, $20m Amart account and Bega (which moved to Thinkerbell after a 10-year relationship with Carat). In March, Carat client Virgin Australia also announced it would review its agency relationships.

Carat has attempted to counteract these losses with the addition of United Airlines, the $10m Beacon Lighting account, Event Hospitality and Entertainment and Grill’d.

There have also been a number of changes at the Dentsu Aegis Network executive level.


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