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Around 20 jobs axed at Ogilvy Singapore following Singtel account loss

Ogilvy & Mather has laid off 20 people following the loss of its multimillion-dollar account with Singtel last week.

The WPP-owned agency, which employs around 400 people at its Singapore office, lost the consolidated creative and digital account for the Singaporean telecommunications giant last week, although Mumbrella Asia understands that the wider economic uncertainty was also a factor in the staff headcount reduction.

Confirming the job losses, Ogilvy & Mather Singapore group chairman Chris Riley said: “As the largest marketing communications firm in Singapore, we have to make adjustments from time to time to our staffing plans in order to respond to constant changes in our industry, clients and skillset requirements.

“About 20 employees – less than 5 per cent of total staff strength – have been let go and we are doing all we can to help those affected. We remain committed to developing our talent pool and look to hiring across growth areas in social, UX, data and consulting.”

Ogilvy had worked with Singtel since 2013, when it won the account – the previous incumbent being BBDO. However, following a pitch launched last October, Singtel handed creative leadership over to Bartle Bogle Hegarty on Monday.

The agency’s digital arm Ogilvy One will still handle B2B marketing, while WPP’s Hogarth will be responsible for creative production. Independent Singaporean agency Goodstuph is to take over social media and online content.

Ogilvy has produced some memorable work for Singtel over the last three years, including a film featuring a fencer with a mobile phone for eyes to show off the telco’s speed, coverage and reliability.

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