Maxus appoints first ever global creative director

1 September, 2016

LONDON — Maxus Global has today announced the appointment of Jen Smith, currently head of strategy and planning for Maxus UK, as its first ever global Creative Director. Smith will be responsible for overseeing all of Maxus Global’s creative output.

Smith joined Maxus UK in 2013 as head of planning, before expanding her role to include strategy where she restructured the team to enable Maxus UK to better provide insight-led, ideas-focussed and technology-rich solutions across the agency. Smith was also instrumental in creating Change Planning, Maxus’ bespoke planning process.

In 2016 Smith developed a bespoke creativity training scheme, taking ten percent of the agency on a journey of facilitation techniques and creative problem solving.  Each of these creative champions are driving learnings out across the entire agency.

In her new role, Smith will focus on the delivery of outstanding creative work for clients both on a UK and global level, and she will also expand the UK creativity leadership programme for all Maxus employees worldwide.

Announcing the promotion, Lindsay Pattison, Maxus worldwide CEO, said: “Jen has been an absolutely integral part of Maxus UK; she’s a brilliant communicator and left field thinker, and has consistently come up with ideas that move the needle for our clients and make us a more efficient, creative business.

“Jen was a very key participant in Walk The Talk, the Maxus gender equality initiative that helps women identify what their goals are and find the confidence to step up and make bold moves. Jen took these learnings on board and came to me with a proposal for this new role that both benefits Maxus and offers her the ideal step up; she is truly walking the talk.”

Nick Vale, Worldwide Head of Planning, Maxus says; “Without any shadow of a doubt we are in the midst of a revolution in media; there’s a tremendous opportunity to create new types of work that sizzle with excitement. But to properly deliver it takes more than lip-service or hybrid strategy/ideas roles - it requires dedicated talent with the space to focus, explore and create. As one of the most intuitively creative media thinkers in the business today I can think of no-one better that Jen to push us to new and exciting places."

Jen Smith, global creative director at Maxus, said: “Maxus is a super -fast and agile global agency and there’s a fantastic opportunity to drive creativity across our network. Clients are calling out for work that is brave, problem-solving and with one foot firmly planted in the future. I’m looking forward to taking the initiatives that have delivered in the UK out across the world, creating creativity leadership programmes, along with developing stronger and senior creative opportunities for key clients across the globe.

“I could not be more excited to take up the opportunity to drive creativity across Maxus and to help the entire organisation lead change in a whole new way.”

Smith will continue to be based in London and will report into Nick Vale Worldwide Head of Planning and Nick Baughan, CEO Maxus UK. She will split her time 50/50 between Maxus UK and Maxus Global.

About Maxus Global
Maxus Global is a global network of local media agencies that embraces technology and innovation to deliver tangible business benefits for clients.

Maxus has a clear vision: to lead clients into change and the brilliant opportunity that change creates.

Maxus delivers meaningful business results through a mix of smart organic growth and by strengthening and expanding its specialist services. Clients include NBCU, L’Oréal, Church & Dwight, BT, Huawei and Aldi.

Maxus is part of GroupM, the world’s largest media investment management group, responsible for nearly one-third of all media investment worldwide and serving as parent company for all of WPP’s media agencies.

Founded in 2008, Maxus employs around 3,000 people across 55 countries in 70 offices and has been the world’s fastest growing media network for six consecutive years, according to RECMA.

About GroupM

GroupM is the leading global media investment management company serving as the parent to WPP media agencies including Mindshare, MEC, MediaCom, Maxus, and Essence, as well as the programmatic digital media platform, Xaxis, each global operations in their own right with leading market positions. GroupM’s primary purpose is to maximize performance of WPP’s media agencies by operating as leader and collaborator in trading, content creation, sports, digital, finance, proprietary tool development and other business-critical capabilities. GroupM’s focus is to deliver unrivaled marketplace advantage to its clients, stakeholders and people.

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