Former Publicis global exec Chris Foster replaces Matthew Godfrey as Y&R Asia president

Following a turbulent year that saw a number of senior departures, Y&R Asia has appointed Chris Foster as regional president.

Chris Foste

Foster, who was previously Publicis Groupe’s global clients president, will relocate from New York to Singapore and report to Y&R global president David Patton.

He was previously based in Singapore, where he held a raft of leadership roles at Saatchi & Saatchi. These included worldwide chief operating officer and chairman and regional CEO, Asia Pacific and Greater China.

Canadian-born Foster replaces former president Matthew Godfrey, who recently left the agency after seven years to join Singapore-based food start-up Nutrition Innovation as CEO. 

Shortly after Godfrey’s departure, Y&R South East Asia CEO, Sanjay Bhasin, left the agency  to join Dentsu Aegis Network as the head of IndoChina. 

In Singapore, the agency recently appointed Shirley Tay to replace Melvin Kuek as the country’s CEO. 

“We are excited to have Chris join Y&R. He’s a dynamic, energising leader and brings extensive client expertise, deep knowledge of the region as well as a strategic global perspective,” said Patton. “Chris’ success in Asia, as well as his track record of building strong, collaborative teams will be key to building upon our creative and strategic excellence, expanding our business capabilities and helping our clients grow their brands in the region and beyond.”

Foster added: “I am eager to return to the dynamic markets of Asia, and do so with great excitement and optimism as part of Y&R. The talent and resources of the Y&R network have contributed to Y&R’s reputation for work that is highly strategic, creative and innovative.

“Collectively the Asian economies are the strongest in the world at this time, and the enthusiasm for all things digital among consumers means there are enormous growth opportunities for local, regional and global clients. I am looking forward to making an immediate impact and bringing my regional and global experience to bear on our clients’ brands and businesses.”


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