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Zeno Group APAC CEO Margaret Key moves to MSL as CEO for APAC, Middle East and Africa

Margaret Key has left Zeno Group as CEO of Asia-Pacific to take over as CEO of MSL Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa. This is a newly created role at MSL. Based in Seoul, Key will report to Publicis Groupe CEO of Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa Loris Nold. 

Key is a PR veteran having spent eight years working for Burson-Marsteller, leaving as CEO of Asia-Pacific in 2018 to join Zeno. At the time of her appointment, she had said: “Zeno’s fearless, entrepreneurial culture is the perfect place for me, and the ideal opportunity at this time given their incredible momentum globally and commitment specifically to expanding in Asia.”

She has also worked for Edelman, Hilton and Hyundai.  

MSL had several regional leaders in key markets in the region – South Asia CEO Amit Misra; Middle East and North Africa COO Ajit Ramaswami COO and Greater China CEO Jun Xu.

In response to a query from Mumbrella on how Key’s appointment would change reporting structures in the region, a Publicis Groupe spokesperson said: “MSL country CEOs will have a functional reporting line into Margaret and will continue reporting to the group country CEO.”

In response to a query on why the company chose to look outside for a leader, the spokesperson said: “In Asia-Pacific and Middle East and Africa, it makes great sense for a number of reasons: given how many of our clients are set up in the region. And the need to have a strong local footprint while managing and integrating our community of leaders and expertise at the regional level, across multiple markets.

“Margaret is a world class practitioner, a unique talent with so much expertise across all markets in the region.”

Speaking about her appointment, Nold said: “Margaret joining us is outstanding news for Publicis Groupe. She is a unique senior leader and a highly respected practitioner with deep understanding of the region.

“She brings years of experience and a proven track record. She is exactly the leader we have been looking for to accelerate the development of MSL in the region as well as at the heart of our country model. I am really thrilled at the prospect of partnering with her. 

“In the past few years, we have been putting our Power of One model in practice to transform the relationship with our clients and to win the trust of new ones. Building very strong expertise such as influence and PR through MSL is a critical pillar, to ensure that we can assemble the very best, agile solutions that ultimately drive business impact for our clients. 

“With Margaret at the helm of MSL in the region, I am also convinced that we will be in a strong position to attract the very best talents from the PR industry while providing great opportunities to our talents.”

Key said: “I am deeply honoured to join MSL considering the firm’s unparalleled leadership, unique business model and global ambition. The industry continues to evolve and MSL has developed an exceptional approach to client service that puts earned media and influence at the center.  I am inspired by the team and excited about the opportunity in Asia and beyond.”

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