Banham Completes Saeidi's JWT EXCO
Campaign Middle East|March 11, 2018

The agency’s new ECD has followed its CEO from FP7 and promises to use passion to raise standards.

Austyn Allison

Sasan Saeidi, formerly managing director of FP7 Dubai, recently joined J. Walter Thompson as its regional Gulf CEO. He took the post about six months after JWT Dubai CEO Mohammed Sabry left, along with executive creative director Marco Bezerra. The agency has been in a state of flux since then, and Saeidi’s arrival was the start of moves by JWT MENA CEO Roy Haddad to restore some stability.

Saeidi has been putting together a new leadership team – the executive committee, or “exco” – and says the appointment of Paul Banham as regional executive creative director (ECD) is the final piece in that jigsaw. Banham himself was at FP7 with Saeidi.

The rest of the exco consists of: Mona El Sayed, regional planning director, who as head of strategy will focus on brand and connections; Sarah Mosallam, regional talent manager, focusing on people and culture; Natasha Ighodaro, head of social media, focusing on social, content marketing and performance; and Asaad Youssef, regional finance director.

“The direction that we are going as an agency is basically trying to focus and remodel ourselves as a creative consultancy,” says Saeidi. “A creative consultancy lives at the intersection of creativity and business, every day. The consultancy part is coming from the thought leadership, from the rigour, the strategy, from everything else we are going to be doing on that. And the creativity is basically the magic that [Banham] adds. It is not doing creative for the sake of creative; it is creative for the sake of business solutions. That’s the way we’ve modelled our agency.”

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