CEO of Shock Media Vince Tan steps aside in favour of ex-investment banker

The founder and chief executive officer of Malaysian independent agency Shock Media Studio has stepped down from leadership in favour of a former investment banker.

Founder and self-described “selflesspreneur” Vince Tan has decided to relinquish the role of CEO to Xavier Hoe Cheah How, the former chief investment officer of Malaysia’s RHB Bank.

Vince Tan

Founded in 2012, the Kuala Lumpur-based agency specialises in website design, search-engine optimisation and Facebook and LinkedIn management.

According to Shock Media, Hoe will now bring his experience in corporate deal-making, investments and financial to the agency, “turning it into a regional powerhouse to reckon with in the next several years”.

Xavier Hoe

Meanwhile, Tan will move into the role of managing director for the present time, overseeing the team of 40 people. However, as the agency expands across South East Asia over the next 12 months, Tan is expected to take a more senior role across a wider group level. New senior management hires are also expected to be announced.

Speaking to Mumbrella Asia about the hinking behind Hoe’s hiring, Tan said: “I have always been a risk-taker when it comes to talent. I like to work with a lot of people who are great, but may not always have the necessary experience. Sometimes if you have too much experience, you can get tunnel vision.”

He added: “Xavier was originally meant to become the chief financial officer, but we quickly realised he was worth way more.”

Last year, it was reported that Hoe had left RHB following allegations of asset management irregularities with regards to its investment decisions.

Addressing the reports concerning Hoe’s links to RHB, Tan said: “There was no ground and basis in those cases. I think he saw it as a time though to try something different.”

As well as taking over leadership, Hoe will also become a shareholder in the business, although the agency declined to say how big his stake will be.

In a statement, the agency added: “With tons of successful million-dollar product launches and projects under his belt, Vince Tan, the well-known digital marketing veteran and international speaker, relegates the strategic reins into the capable hands of Xavier Hoe, to focus on core corporate competencies, such as increasing efficiency and productivity, and help more businesses get more customers by increasing their visibility and traffic.

“As the new head honcho in Shock Media Studio, Xavier Hoe is the catalyst for transformative growth to reach new frontiers and bring unprecedented success to even more businesses internationally.

“Together, these two top guns fuse many years of experience in the digital industry and the financial industry to create an explosion of market disruption force like never before. They bring together invaluable insights from different perspectives to radically revolutionise the market with cutting edge strategies and groundbreaking products.”

According to Shock Media’s website, current clients on the roster include Watsons, Maybank and Shiseido, as well as a number of local companies.


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