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M&C Saatchi names Walker as president and CEO in Asia Pacific

HONG KONG - M&C Saatchi named Asia Pacific advertising and media veteran Kim Walker, who quit Aegis in January, as its new president and CEO for the region.

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Walker takes over from Kevin Ramsey, who quit in December to take up the role of president and CEO of McCann Worldgroup in Japan.

Ramsey's departure triggered a reshuffle at M&C Saatchi in Asia, resulting in split regional responsibilities between regional executive chairman Tom Dery and chief financial officer Peter Cameron. At the time the agency said it may appoint a new CEO.

While at Aegis, Walker was responsible for heading up the development of the group's digital operation Isobar having joined in in 2000 after Aegis acquired his Japan-based media consulting firm SPI.

"I've always said after resigning from Aegis that I wanted to pursue an entrepreneurial career path and M&C Saatchi is one of the most entrepreneurial networks around. It's an exciting prospect," Walker said.

He had previously been at Aegis as chief operating officer of Carat Asia Pacific and has all enjoyed spells at full-service agencies in Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, New York and Tokyo including Bates.

Tom Dery, M&C Saatchi executive chairman for Asia Pacific, said that Walker's appointment was an important step for M&C Saatchi and that his extensive experience in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Singapore would be invaluable to the growth of M&C in the region.

"There would be very few people with Kim's deep understanding of each Asian market, so we regard it as a coup to have him continue to build the M&C Saatchi name for us," Dery said.

Walker's appointment follows the promotion of Australian creative partner Tom McFarlane, who took on the regional creative brief, based in Sydney, while fellow Australian planning director Sophie Ayles, who has been on maternity leave, took up the a planning role in Hong Kong.

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