GroupM Makes Senior Leadership Appointments for the Asia Pacific

Arshan Saha, Jon Thurlow, Deepika Nikhilender, and Brett Poole
The GroupM Nexus APAC leadership mandate has been handed to four senior ad tech veterans.

GroupM, WPP’s media investment group, today unveiled a series of C-suite appointments in the Asia Pacific that will lead the regional transformation of GroupM Nexus – the global performance organization that unites the network’s performance talent and technologies into one single outfit.

The appointments include:

  • Arshan Saha, CEO of GroupM Nexus APAC (formerly CEO of Xaxis & Specialty Businesses APAC)
  • Jon Thurlow, COO of GroupM Nexus APAC (this is an additional appointment to his corporate remit as COO of GroupM APAC)
  • Deepika Nikhilender, CEO of Xaxis APAC (formerly Senior Vice President of Xaxis APAC)
  • Brett Poole, CEO of Finecast APAC & AUNZ (formerly Managing Director of Finecast Australia)

“GroupM Nexus is a cross-channel performance-led organization that unites our expertise in service excellence, AI technology and the most advanced solutions,” said Arshan Saha, the Chief Executive Officer of GroupM Nexus APAC.

“This is the future of marketing, and we are poised to offer our clients and agencies the most powerful performance engine that will accelerate their growth.”

 
 

A founding member of Xaxis APAC, Arshan rose through the ranks to become Asia-Pacific CEO of Xaxis & GroupM’s data-driven specialty businesses including INCA, Finecast, Sightline, and Acceleration. For over a decade, he led the expansion of Xaxis – an A.I. powered programmatic engine – into 16 markets.

Newly-appointed Chief Operating Officer of GroupM Nexus APAC, Jon Thurlow led the consolidation of GroupM’s search, social, commerce, programmatic, and addressable practices in Asia Pacific. For almost three years, he oversaw the integration of inter-network systems and structures across 16 markets into a unified campaign delivery platform.

Xaxis – GroupM’s programmatic brand – has promoted Deepika Nikhilender to the Chief Executive Officer role at Xaxis APAC. She brings over two decades of marketing and data science experience, including steering Xaxis’ A.I. and machine-learning ambitions in the region, while leading the design of marketing solutions, supply strategy, trading and operations, as well as ad-tech and platforms strategy.

 
 

“With the digital ecosystem evolving at an unparalleled pace, Xaxis’ armory of data intelligence and outcome-driven technologies will help future-proof our clients’ businesses,” said Nikhilender.

“Together with the team, I look forward to cultivating a culture where our talents will continue to thrive as well as strengthening Xaxis’ capabilities to achieve our clients’ desired outcomes.”

Completing the Nexus APAC leadership line-up, Brett Poole has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of Finecast APAC & AUNZ.

He brings over two decades of experience in product development, tech commercialization, publishing, and advertising platforms, Poole has launched businesses across native advertising (plista), data tech (mPLATFORM), programmatic trading (Xaxis), and most recently, spearheaded television transformation in Australia where his team grew the Finecast brand to become synonymous with Addressable TV and TV innovation.

“Television is experiencing tremendous metamorphosis throughout the world and there is huge potential to further our TV transformation efforts in APAC which is well-known for its diversity, talent and innovative spirit – all the things that are close to my heart,” said Poole.

“I look forward to working closely with Nexus APAC leaders to build on the outstanding work of our Finecast APAC team.”

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