SHANGHAI- Carat’s general manager for Eastern China, Simon Woodward, has left full-time employment to help the media agency establish a buying system in Japan.

The move follows Carat’s set-up of Chusen Media K. K. in a joint-venture with Chuo Senko, Japan’s 17th largest agency. Carat’s Asia-Pacific chief executive, David Liu(刘毓慈), said Woodward, who left the China operation last month having completed his assignment there, was still with the group. Liu added that Woodward would help Carat set up its buying system in Japan as a part-time consultant.

MediaCom’s national buying director, Juliana Tang, will take over Woodward’s China responsibilities. Tang joins Carat as national business director in Shanghai on March 1, working alongside Weifoon Lai, ex-MediaCom Beijing general manager, who was hired at the end of last year, also as national business director. According to Liu, Tang will help grow Carat group accounts – such as Adidas and Cadbury – which are becoming more active in China, while Wei handles existing business.

Carat has also merged its Hong Kong and Guangzhou operations, with Grace Yao taking on the expanded role of general manager for both markets. A key driver in the merger has been the steady rise in Southern China business, while Hong Kong billings have remained flat.

Changes have also taken place in Singapore, where the agency has hired former Bates IndoChina executive Mike Langton as its Singapore chief executive and regional business director.

“Mike is filling a regional role because 60 to 70 per cent of our Singapore office business is from our regional clients,

said Liu. Langton’s appointment follows a decision by Singapore general manager Tan Lay Geok to work out of home due to matters of a personal nature.

Amid the changes, Liu said Carat had started the year on a strong note, winning the Cadbury New Zealand brief, estimated at NZ$20 million, and beverage brand Hey Song’s AOR work in Taiwan.



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