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Melina Cruickshank switches to top marketing job at REA Group from rival Domain

Real estate company Domain’s most senior marketer Melina Cruickshank has defected to direct rival REA Group.

Cruickshank’s departure comes days before Nine takes control of Fairfax Media, which owns 60% of Domain.

Cruickshank will be REA Group’s chief marketing and content officer, the same role she has been in at Domain for the last four years.  She will report to CEO Tracey Fellows.

Melina Cruickshank

Cruickshank: Joining the market leader

She replaces chief marketing officer Kieren Cooney, who was announced as Foxtel’s new CMO in October. REA Group’s EGM of media and marketing Libby Minogue left in August.

Fellows said: “Melina was the standout candidate and I’m delighted she has agreed to join us. She is passionate about this sector and has a track record of success leading teams and growing product and content revenue streams in Australia and abroad. Melina will drive our global marketing and content strategy, working with our talented teams in Australia and around the globe.”

Majority ownership of Domain is about to shift to Nine

Cruickshank said: “It is difficult to leave Domain. I’ve enjoyed my time here and am grateful for the opportunities I’ve been given. The transition offers a global role for the industry leader, and I’m excited about stepping up to lead teams at that level. I also have enormous respect for Tracey and the REA executive team and am excited to work with them.”

Fellows is herself due to step down as CEO but will remain on the REA Group board, while moving into a new global role as president of News Corp’s global real estate offering.

REA Group has hired Cruickshank

The move comes less than a fortnight after The SMH reported speculation that Cruikshank had been offered the REA Group role and declined.

Domain, which floated on the ASX in November last year, is a relative minnow compared to the News Corp aligned REA Group. Domain’s current market capitalisation is $1.4bn, compared to REA Group’s $10bn.

REA Group told Mumbrella it did not yet have a start date for Cruickshank. Given the competitive nature of the two property platforms, she may have to sit out a significant non-compete period.

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