The Royals’ Michaela Futcher departs for TBWA Media Arts Lab in Singapore, replaced by Tom Donald

The Royals head of strategy, Michaela Futcher, has departed the business to become regional head of strategy for APAC at TBWA Media Arts Lab in Singapore.

In her place, the agency has hired Tom Donald as head of strategy in Sydney, from M&C Saatchi’s design business Re.

Futcher had been with The Royals since 2015

Futcher had been The Royals since 2015, after moving across from Droga5 as planning director. She was promoted to head of strategy in 2017. Futcher has previously worked at Young & Rubicam Group and George Pattison Y&R.

Futcher’s new role will see her working on the Apple account.

Donald worked at Re for three years. Prior to that he was the global innovations director at Beam Suntory, planning director at Droga5 and planning director at The Works.

In 2019 Donald ran The Communications Council’s Ad School advanced strategic planning course.

Tom Donald has spent the last three years as head of strategy at Re

The Royals managing partner, Dan Beaumont, said Futcher was hard to replace.

“Replacing Michaela was always going to be a tough task. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank her for all her hard work and wish her well in taking up her dream role,” Beaumont said.

“In Tom we’ve found an awesome human with the right passion, experience and curious nature to take our strategic capabilities to the next level and help us deliver results for our clients. It helps that he’s a good person to be around, which combined with his intellect, makes him the perfect Royal. We’re excited to have him on board.”

Donald said of his appointment: “The Royals have everything I look for in an agency: independence, a great culture, no bullshit people, and significant ambition. Their mission to unlock what they call ‘unnatural change’ for clients through a commitment to creativity and effectiveness is very appealing. I’m excited to see what we can create together.”


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.