VMLY&R boosts Melbourne leadership team

Sarah Bailey and Jon Kenyon have been appointed managing partners of VMLY&R Melbourne, with Kenneth Chan joining as strategy director.

The move follows the agency’s win of Defence Force Recruiting account earlier this year and the WPP AUNZ owned agency appointing Katie Dally and Miles Scott as Sydney managing partners in January.

VMLY&R Melbourne’s appointments (l to r): Jon Kenyon, Sarah Bailey, Jake Barrow, Katherine Chen, Kenneth Chan

Bailey has previously held roles as managing partner at DDB and head of business management at Ogilvy leading accounts including ANZ, Telstra, AAMI, BP and Open Universities Australia.

“I love the combination of rich advertising heritage, cutting-edge technology and genuine innovation – it forms a truly modern agency proposition,” Bailey said of her appointment.

“You can feel the momentum in the way everyone here is working together, there is such an abundance of talent and so much potential. It was a no brainer to get on board and enjoy what is clearly going to be a great ride.”

Kenyon, who joined VML in June 2017 from Fox Sports Australia having previously worked with Isobar and Big Red, said: “I’m super excited and thrilled to be a part of the next evolution of this agency, as we hit the remainder of 2019 full of momentum.

“Our now expanded and unique offering allows us to continue to push the creative boundaries and transform our clients’ businesses. The diverse wealth of talent in the building is truly inspiring and I am very excited to be on this journey.”

Bailey and Kenyon will report directly to VMLY&R CEO Aden Hepburn and lead the agency’s Melbourne office alongside ECD Jake Barrow. Bailey will also manage the DFR account while Kenyon will continue to lead production and build Melbourne’s platform and CX capabilities across DFR and the agency’s broader client roster.

Hepburn said of the appointments: “We have built strong momentum post-merger delivering excellent growth and delivering on our plan to be a significant force in the Australian market. As we continue into 2019, our goal is to keep growing. To do this, we needed to find the best local talent.

“We believe we’ve found that in Sarah, Jon and Kenneth, who are highly regarded leaders within our industry and bring a wealth of diversified experience to the agency,” continued Hepburn. “It’s a big coup for us to have a leadership team with their creativity and smarts and leadership skills join our business at this exciting and transformational time.”

Kenyon, Bailey and Chan’s appointments follow the hire of Katherine Chen who joined VMLY&R Melbourne in late 2018 as client services director with a remit to lead VMLY&R’s new brand experience offering.


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