WPP Data Alliance expands with Africa launch

16 April, 2015

The Data Alliance WPP

Charge is to enhance data-driven solutions and activate a mobile-first data strategy in Sub-Saharan Africa

CAPE TOWN, South Africa — Data Alliance’s new presence in Africa is aligned to WPP’s strategic vision of helping clients better leverage data in fast growing markets. Based in Cape Town, the operation will bring expertise from WPP’s global network to Sub-Saharan Africa to harness unique data sets and mobile opportunities. The focus is to accelerate development and enhancement of data-driven solutions, plus activate a mobile-first data strategy.

Local WPP companies Ogilvy, Smollan, Acceleration, Barrows, Wunderman’s Aqua and TMARC came together as sponsoring members to help bring Data Alliance to the region. Together, these companies will work closely on projects to enhance the usage of data across WPP solutions, in turn increasing speed, cross-fertilization and decreasing costs.

This launch is part of a campaign in WPP for “data horizontality” - the ability to better leverage WPP’s people, data and technology across the globe. This model works particularly well in the United States and United Kingdom where Data Alliance is supported by Kantar, GroupM, WPP Digital, Wunderman, KBM Group, JWT, Cohn & Wolfe and Geometry Global. To date, Data Alliance has had success in helping WPP companies better access and leverage data in ways that are more organized, efficient, effective and drive value for clients.

"We are thrilled to help bring Data Alliance to Africa,” said Ben Evans, Managing Director Digital Portfolio of Ogilvy. “How we use data more effectively across marketing communications is becoming an increasingly critical part of the conversation with our clients - both in South Africa and across the rest of the continent. We see Data Alliance as a powerful way to help us win competitive advantage for all our clients across a very broad range of data requirements."

“We look at Africa as a region in which we can do some very modern and progressive things with data, in particular with mobile data,” said Devon Tighe, Managing Director of Data Alliance Africa. “The launch of the Cape Town office is in response to client demand to grow data-driven capabilities in Sub-Saharan Africa. We know that by bringing together a strategic group of companies in Africa, we can help WPP’s agencies better serve clients through data connections that drive smarter decision making.”

Devon Tighe, previously vice president of strategy and operations for Data Alliance, heads the new office as Managing Director. She brings more than 10 years of experience in the colliding worlds of media and analytics to the role. Prior to joining Data Alliance, Devon was a research director at The New York Times where she focused on business strategy and customer analytics. Before heading to the Times, Devon spent six years in research and product development at Dynamic Logic, now part of Millward Brown Digital, a company within WPP's Kantar unit.

In Africa, WPP companies (including associates) generate revenues of approximately US$650 million and employ over 28,000 people.

About Data Alliance

The Data Alliance is the WPP company that supports the Group's data business by enhancing access to data and data-driven marketing applications. The Data Alliance leverages a global network of expert leaders in market research, analytics, CRM, media and digital to deliver a solution-neutral and holistic perspective on the Group’s data strategy and solutions. It drives internal and external data partnerships and connects WPP’s centers of excellence to address client challenges in the world of big data. For more information, visit www.thedataalliance.com

About WPP
WPP is the world’s largest communications services group with billings of US$76 billion and revenues of US$19 billion. Through its operating companies, the Group provides a comprehensive range of advertising and marketing services including advertising & media investment management; data investment management; public relations & public affairs; branding & identity; healthcare communications; direct, digital, promotion & relationship marketing and specialist communications. The company employs over 188,000 people (including associates and investments) in over 3,000 offices across 111 countries. For more information, visit www.wpp.com.

WPP was named Holding Company of the Year at the 2014 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity for the fourth year running. WPP was also named, for the fourth consecutive year, the World's Most Effective Holding Company in the 2015 Effie Effectiveness Index, which recognizes the effectiveness of marketing communications.

Data Alliance Press
Jennifer Milk
+1 212-710-2434

Data Alliance Africa
Devon Tighe

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