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McCann’s GM Nicole Gardner exits for role at Quantcast

The general manager at McCann Sydney, Nicole Gardner, has departed the agency for the head of account management role at AI technology company Quantcast.

Gardner’s departure comes just weeks after the CEO of McCann, Ben Lilley, resigned to relocate to France with his family.

Gardner has departed McCann as its general manager

Before joining McCann, Gardner was the group account director at SMART, an agency helmed by Lilley, which was then acquired by McCann in 2011.

Following the acquisition, Gardner became client services director at McCann and was promoted to general manager one year later.

The news of the departures comes five months after consultancy Deloitte poached McCann Melbourne’s managing director Adrian Mills, head of strategy and media David Phillips, executive creative director Matt Lawson and digital media lead Justine Mills.

McCann replaced its managing director Mills and strategy director Phillips with Anita Deutsch-Burley and Roshni Hegerman.

The agency is yet to announce its replacements for its digital media lead, ECD and CEO.

Speaking about her new role at Quantcast Gardner said: “I am thrilled to be joining Quantcast at a very exciting time in its development as the real capabilities of AI and its ability to connect brands with audiences is coming to the fore. I look forward to working with a great team and bringing my skills and experience to clients.”

Alongside Gardner’s appointment, Quantcast has appointed Rachael Townsley as head of marketing.

Townsley was previously the head of trade marketing and communications at streaming service Pandora.

In June last year Pandora closed its local operations after five years in the Australian market.

Townsley said: “The growth of Quantcast in the Asia Pacific region, particularly the recent expansion into seven new Asian markets, brings with it some great marketing opportunities to not only grow awareness of Quantcast but also understanding of what the business stands for and our offering and expertise.”

Andrew Double, managing director at Quantcast, added: “We’ve had considerable growth across the market over the last three and a half years and, with this new structure, I am convinced we have attracted the right people to help us reach the next stage in our development.

“Nicole’s new role was created to ensure we maintain our best-in-market service levels and help our clients grow their businesses. Her background of running big teams and startups is perfect.
Having come from agency side she is well versed in the challenges our agencies and clients are facing.

“Rachael has a great marketing pedigree and her skills will help us drive industry understanding of the Quantcast offer and what we stand for. We are entering a world of AI and insights and not many companies can say they have been doing that for the past 11 years.”

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