Dentsu continues to steady ship with David Halter to move across from CHEP

Dentsu ANZ has started 2022 with another senior group appointment, with CHE Proximity chief strategy officer and Sydney managing director, David Halter, to join the business at the end of next month.

Halter will join as chief strategy and growth officer across the group, leaving Clemenger Group after a decade’s service. Tangas continues to stamp her mark on the group, with the newly-created role for Halter, adding to recent hires, also joining the executive leadership group.

Dentsu ANZ CEO Angela Tangas, said of Halter’s appointment: “David is an amazing talent for Dentsu. He is one of the most recognised strategic growth leaders in our industry. By joining our team, reinforces our commitment to client-first outcomes and providing innovative, integrated experience solutions through our combination of Media, CXM and Creative offerings to unlock sustainable advantage for our clients.”

Halter joins the evolving leadership team at Dentsu ANZ

Hiring Halter comes soon after former Cummins & Partners CEO Kirsty Muddle was revealed to be the new Dentsu Creative CEO, closely followed by John Riccio joining CXM business Merkle as its new CEO. He joins them and Tangas on the ANZ executive leadership team.

Halter has spent the past six years at the Clemenger Group agency, joining as MD of the Sydney office in 2016, later adding the chief strategy officer title in 2018. He joined from stablemate Clemenger BBDO, where he was digital planning director.

During his time at CHEP he was worked closely with brands including Samsung, IKEA, Danone, NRMA, eBay, and Virgin Australia.

MD of Dentsu Creative in Sydney, which includes brands BWM Isobar and DentsuMB, Brent Kerby will also depart the agency next month. The group said that this is unrelated to the hire of David, and at this stage there will be no direct replacement, with Muddle, the incoming CEO, set to take up her post in mid-February.

Kerby was appointed new CEO of Clemenger BBDO Sydney this morning, replacing Pete Bosilkovski.

Tangas continued: “We are committed to supporting our current and future clients evolve their business strategies to ensure deeper connectivity with their customers, society and the changes required for them to be more responsive and adaptive. David will add immense value in this pursuit and the new opportunities we can unlock together as ANZ’s most integrated network and relevant client partner.”

On joining Dentsu, Halter said that getting to know Tangas and the team proved to him that it is a “progressive network”.

“Whether it be a big organising brand idea, creative media solutions to connect with audiences or tech-driven ideas, they are focused on providing the most compelling customer experiences.”

“I’ve always believed that great ideas are what inspire agency people to work well together each day. What’s inspiring to clients is the ability to anchor those ideas in a strong strategy that makes commercial sense. Bringing all the parts together to make a difference with the team at Dentsu is what I’m most excited about.”

His departure provides further flux for the Clemenger Group agency, which has seen senior talent turnover in the past 18 months. This included CEO Chris Howatson and national CCO Ant White leaving to startHowatson + White (now Howatson + Company), with Justin Hind later appointed CEO and Gavin McLeod coming in as CCO. 

Cam Hoelter was appointed ECD of the agency following Wesley Hawes’ departure, however left after just six months. Justin Ruben was later appointed as the new ECD. 

On Kerby’s departure, Tangas said he has played an important role in the growth and success of the creative businesses in the Sydney market across the past six years.

“I would personally like to thank Brent for his commitment and dedication during this time as we continue to focus our efforts on being ANZs most progressive creative offering. It’s been an incredible journey and we wish him all the best for the future.”



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