Edelman, the global communications firm, today announced that Carol Potter, president and CEO, EMEA will be taking on the newly created role of global vice chair, brand. Potter will be succeeded by Ed Williams, CEO, UK and Ireland and vice-chairman EMEA.
Remaining on Edelman’s global operations committee, Carol will partner with global CCO, Judy John; Lisa Sepulveda, chief client officer; and the regional brand leads led by global chair Amanda Glasgow.
In her four years at Edelman, Potter has been instrumental in building communications strategies for clients, and as president and CEO of EMEA, has brought a cohesive strategy to the region, delivering the highest profitability in the region in 7 years. Potter joined Edelman following 9 years at BBDO as president and CEO, China, where she built a highly awarded creative and digital agency serving many clients. Prior to BBDO, Carol worked at Saatchi & Saatchi, MullenLowe and J Walter Thompson, responsible for marketing brands, from detergents to diamonds, across the globe.
Carol said of her new role: “It has been an honour to lead the regional business for the last three years and together with the leadership team in the region to see such profitability and impressive work achieved for our clients. Now is an extraordinary time for brands and their relationship with their customers and stakeholders. With my experience leading global brands, I am delighted to take on this next step, and partner with our fantastic teams around the business to ensure Edelman is at the forefront of ensuring that our client’s brands are securing trust with all their stakeholders.”
Williams, CEO, UK and Ireland and vice-chairman EMEA, who will succeed Potter, has led Edelman’s UK and Ireland business since October 2011. Under his leadership, the business doubled in revenue and changed the mix of staff to align against new market opportunities - hiring from advertising and marketing services firms, corporate advisory, legal services, research and polling, and risk management. Williams also identified and led the acquisition of specialist capital markets and financial services boutique Smithfield, and appointed an advisory board, led by UK and Ireland chairman Lord Myners.
Before joining Edelman, Williams led corporate affairs and communications for two global media companies: the BBC and Reuters. Prior to that, he spent five years at Brunswick before which he had a career as a network television journalist.
Williams said of his new role: “It has been a huge privilege to be CEO of the UK and Ireland business over the last eight years. Over that time, I have had the fortune to work with fantastic colleagues. Together, and alongside some brilliant new hires, we doubled the size of the business to become the UK’s largest agency. We have won awards and changed the nature of the work we do. With so much talent, creativity and drive in London and Dublin, I have great confidence that the business will continue to go from strength to strength.
In my new role leading our businesses in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, I intend to deploy a similar strategy - build a unified and focused team that regardless of national border can intelligently and diligently serve clients across the region.”
Both Carol and Williams will assume their new roles from the 1st October and continue to be based in London and will report into Matt Harrington, global COO, Edelman.
Harrington said: “I would like to thank Carol for her EMEA leadership, bringing a compelling strategy to the region and driving strong results for our clients and the business. We are pleased she is taking on this new role to bring her high-value expertise to our Brand team and clients across the network.
As we embark on the EMEA region’s next chapter from a position of strength I look forward to seeing the region thrive under the proven leadership of Ed Williams. The process for searching for the right person for these roles, has reinforced the quality and breadth of talent we have at Edelman.”
Edelman is a global communications firm that partners with businesses and organizations to evolve, promote and protect their brands and reputations. Our 6,000 people in more than 60 offices deliver communications strategies that give our clients the confidence to lead and act with certainty, earning the trust of their stakeholders. Our honors include the Cannes Lions Grand Prix for PR; Advertising Age’s 2019 A-List; the Holmes Report’s 2018 Global Digital Agency of the Year; and, five times, Glassdoor’s Best Places to Work. Since our founding in 1952, we have remained an independent, family-run business. Edelman owns specialty companies Edelman Intelligence (research) and United Entertainment Group (entertainment, sports, lifestyle).