NEW YORK — Edelman has named Karima Zmerli, Ph.D. global head of Performance and Predictive Intelligence for Edelman Data & Intelligence (DxI), effective immediately. Zmerli will lead the Performance and Predictive Intelligence units globally and oversee the development and implementation of the related go-to-market strategy. She will be based in New York and report to Yannis Kotziagkiaouridis, global chief Data and Analytics officer of Edelman DxI.
“Technology and data have transformed every single aspect of business and they are now transforming how we understand, capture, codify and enable trust, to drive competitive advantage and sustainable growth,” said Kotziagkiaouridis. “I could not be more excited about Karima joining our Data & Intelligence team, she is a proven business leader and an incredible technical expert that will help set the direction of data and tech at Edelman.”
Zmerli joins Edelman from Wavemaker, a GroupM agency, where she served as chief Data Sciences officer since 2016. In that role she helped generate over $1 billion in new business. Under her leadership, the Data Science team at Wavemaker grew between 30 to 40 percent four years in a row, the largest Data Science team within the group. Zmerli’s success was based on developing new products and solutions. She was responsible for the first Audience Science team at GroupM globally and established strong partnerships with key data and tech providers such as Google, Oracle and Resonate.
Zmerli brings over 15 years of data and analytics experience across several global agency networks, including Merkle, Razorfish and Digitas. An industry veteran, she has worked with many of the world’s most innovative brands, including Ikea, Pernod Ricard USA, Tiffany & Co., Colgate, L’Oréal, Novo Nordisk, DoorDash, Church & Dwight and T. Rowe Price.
“Edelman is driving the science of trust with substantial investments in talent, data and technology to redefine what trust means and can do for companies and brands in this new world we live in,” said Zmerli. “I have always admired the ambition of Edelman and its clients to drive significant change in the world through great innovative work that is grounded in data and rigorous research, even more relevant now, in a post 3rd party cookie world. Yannis is putting together an incredible team of experts and specialists that I am excited to work with and learn from.”
Over the past several years, and more aggressively in recent months, Edelman has bolstered its data and analytics capabilities, scaling to build a diverse global group of talent across data science, data engineering, software development, and performance marketing capabilities. Zmerli will lead this group, which includes David Bartram Shaw, Anjuli Bedi, Tim Hwang, Jacob Loban, and Matt Sato, and will work in close partnership with Kotziagkiaouridis and Edelman DxI global chief operating officer, Antoine Harary, a 14-year veteran of the firm.
“Karima joins amidst a meaningful shift in the data and performance marketing landscape; one where first-party data is more important than ever and the role of building meaningful relationships, creating movements, and earning engagement drives competitive advantage,” said Kotziagkiaouridis. “As we advance our data talent and capabilities, equally important is our commitment to our approach of Data with Empathy—that data should be given from people, to organizations, freely and purposefully, driving mutual value.”
Zmerli is a recognized expert and was inducted into Adweek’s Media All-Star Hall of Fame in 2020. She is a regular speaker and panelist at major industry events including the 4As, IAB and Advertising Week.