R/GA has announced the appointment of Kei Shimada to the role of Managing Director. Shimada, who is a former associate partner, founding member, and leader of the Digital Makers Lab at IBM Tokyo, started on April 1st.
Shimada will lead the Tokyo office to drive innovation, human-centric work for the company’s roster of local and international clients. R/GA Tokyo has recently added international and Japanese brands Uber, Suntory, and Nike to its client roster.
“It’s exciting to have a respected, inventive, and influential leader like Kei onboard,” said Tuomas Peltoniemi, EVP & Managing Director, R/GA Asia Pacific.
“With an ambition to leverage new technologies to help clients create new solutions for a more human future, coupled with an incredible track record of commercial and creative success, there’s no one else better to be at the helm of R/GA Tokyo,” Peltoniemi added.
Shimada was most recently Associate Partner, founding member, and leader of Digital Makers Lab., a co-creation lab built within IBM Japan, where he was responsible for both leading the digital transformation of clients and spearheading the creation of solutions.
He has been shortlisted for his work in producing an AI classic concert at Ars Electronica in 2019, and has also recently won the CES 2021 Innovation Award for the world’s first smart assistant called the “Integrated Spatial Assistant Console.”
Prior to joining IBM, he was Global Director of Innovation and Business Development at Dentsu, where he focused on the build-out of a Dentsu Aegis groupwide innovation initiative that created new solutions around wearables, neural technology, locational big data, and crisis management infrastructures.
He was also Chief Lab Officer of dXLab, Dentsu media’s innovation lab spanning eight countries in Southeast Asia, including Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam, and Malaysia.
“I’m excited to be given this opportunity to join R/GA and lead the Tokyo office. To have such an eclectic mix of people working together serving local Japanese and global clients is something very unique to Japan, and gives us a strong competitive advantage,” said Shimada.
“I’m looking forward to further shaping and growing the Tokyo office as we deliver transformative solutions for clients that play at the intersection of bold ambition, creativity, and human truths.”
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