Richard Zhang leaves PHD Shanghai after six years, to join Initiative as MD

Initiative Shanghai has appointed Richard Zhang as managing director, with the experienced executive leaving PHD Shanghai after six years to take up the new role.

The announcement:

Initiative, the culturally-driven media agency within IPG Mediabrands, has today announced the appointment of Richard Zhang, to Managing Director Initiative Shanghai.

With more than 17 years media industry experience across multiple categories including FMCG, Luxury, Automobile, Pharmaceutical, Entertainment, IT and Retail, Zhang joins Initiative from his position as General Manager of PHD Shanghai. Prior roles included agency positions at Mediacom, Havas, UM and ZenithOptimedia.

In his new position as Managing Director Initiative Shanghai, Zhang will take a lead on integrated agency direction including client relationship management, business growth and development.

Will Anstee, President Initiative APAC commented, “I am incredibly excited to welcome Richard to Initiative China. His media intelligence and deep market insights, coupled with his positive energy, are precisely the ingredients to drive our business ambition in China and continue the agency’s growing momentum of wins including Starbucks, Qatar and Revlon.”

Zhang commented, “Media agencies are facing a greater challenge to deliver paid media effectiveness amidst the emergence of new platforms, new technologies and new data regulations.”

Zhang continues “Initiative sets the framework for how a future agency can operate; growing brands through cultural communications strategies, built around the depths and dynamics of consumer behaviour.”    

Tom Wan, CEO IPG Mediabrands China commented, “I am very excited to have Richard join the team. His industry vision and entrepreneurial mind-set are such a great fit with Initiative’s culture. Richard has the strongest credentials I have seen in market as proactive driver of helping clients shape the growth of their brands – it’s this expertise that will propel Initiative into the leading cultural branding agency in China.”    

Zhang will report to Tom Wan, and his appointment is effective immediately.  


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