GroupM trading director James Parkinson (pictured) has told B&T the opportunity to lead the agency across 30 counties was too good an opportunity to turn down.
GroupM this morning announced that Parkinson – who has enjoyed a media spend into the billions and is one of the biggest media names in Australia – will relocate to the UK to take up the role of chief investment and knowledge officer for GroupM in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
Current chief digital officer Danny Bass, who was previously national sales manager of News Limited’s The Australian and national sales director of News Digital Media, will fill the role following Parkinson’s departure.
Parkinson, originally from London, explained to B&T that the promotion represents the perfect next step in his career at GroupM.
“I’ve been working in Australia on and off for 13 years, so this is a massive personal and professional decision, but one that makes sense at this point,” he said.
“I’ve enjoyed a brilliant time in Australia. Being here has allowed the agency to create an innovation market that might have been harder in other places. During my seven years at the agency we've had a data strategy as our core driver. We’re at the end of phase one of that, so it’s the perfect opportunity for somebody else to come in and drive the product."
Parkinson added that Bass moves into the role with a “strong pedigree” from his time at News Limited and has the required experience to lead the GroupM investment team.
John Steedman, chairman and CEO of GroupM, said: “We are delighted for James on his promotion to head of investment and knowledge for GroupM in Europe. The development of the GroupM data products he has been responsible for here in Australia is recognised globally within the group as being leading edge, and he will implement many of those products upon his arrival in Europe.
“He will be sadly missed by the group in Australia, however we are fortunate to have a great depth of talent here in Australia and Danny Bass’s promotion to head up Investment and Knowledge across all communication channels is testament to that talent."