Cowdell Appointed Chairman, Mindshare North America

Antony Young named CEO; leaves Optimedia
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Phil Cowdell has been named chairman, Mindshare North America, GroupM's media services agency, Dominic Proctor, CEO, Mindshare Worldwide announced Thursday. Cowdell has served as the company's CEO since May 2009, and will be succeeded by Antony Young, who was most recently CEO, Optimedia.

In this role, Cowdell will oversee the growth of the North American business as part of the company's drive to play a larger international role in the media services marketplace. Young, who is leaving Optimedia after serving as CEO since 2006, will oversee the business's operations in five U.S. cities and Canada. The appointments will be effective in October.

"This is a great and important day for Mindshare," Proctor said.  "These new appointments represent important steps in a new strategy designed to increase Mindshare North America's role in our agency's global plans."

"I'm very happy to be joining Mindshare at this exciting time in the agency's evolution," said Young. "I look forward to becoming part of a dynamic management team and working together to improve and expand the agency's offerings across North America."

Optimedia announced concurrently the appointment of Dave Ehlers to president, Optimedia U.S., to replace the departing Young.

"Dave personifies all that our organization stands for - integrity, commitment, partnership, and he does it all with great charm and humor," said Tim Jones, CEO, ZenithOptimedia North America. "Like most of our management team, Dave has risen up through the organization, delivering the highest levels of performance and results, excelling at every opportunity. I know he will be successful in this new role and couldn't be happier for him."

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