Shanghai – Starcom MediaVest Group (SMG) today announced the formal launch of its consultancy division in China to be named “Xin Zhi” (StarWisdom in English). This announcement is part of an ongoing reorganization of the group in China and follows such recent moves such as the decision to consolidate Starcom’s Media Portfolio Management operation for all clients.

Xin Zhi will primarily work with mainland media vendors to provide staff training services as well as advising them on market and rate card matters, but will not engage in the selling of media space.

“The formal launch of Xin Zhi recognizes the growing number of requests for advice we have had over the past year from media vendors,” said Gilad Coppersmith, Managing Director of the new division “increasingly they are becoming aware of the benefit to them of improving their professional standards and broadening their perspective beyond their own markets. In addition, they are looking to us to provide advice on rate card structures that would be more attractive to clients and agencies. There is definitely a growing interest in learning from sales models from other countries,” he said. Coppersmith added that the consolidation of media groups at a provincial and city level offered previously unavailable opportunities for genuine cross-media sales and the vendors were very keen to learn best how to structure these. “At a recent session in Fuzhou, the interest in new possibilities to engage clients in a more integrated manner was quite amazing,” he said.

Xin Zhi launches with an initial team of six consultants located across SMG’s three mainland offices.

About Starcom MediaVest Group

Starcom is a division of Starcom MediaVest Group (SMG), a subsidiary of Paris-based Publicis Groupe. SMG ranks among the world’s largest brand communications groups with billings of $18.6billion in 2001. With a global staff of more than 3,500 contact architects, SMG’s network of 110 offices in 67 countries fuels brand-building results for many of the world’s leading companies.

Gilad Coppersmith
Managing Director
Gilad Coppersmith served as media manager at PHD London from 1995-98, working with such clients as Granada Technolgy Group, Harvey Nichols, Toshiba, Sun Microsystems, BBC, Smith & Nephew and Diahatsu. In 1998, he moved to McCann-Erickson Guangming Guangzhou, where he worked with Colgate-Palmolive, Hawley & Hazel, Motorola, Caltex and Ping An. He was part of the team that launched Universal McCann in China in 2000 becoming General Manager. Gilad focused on developing the communications planning capabilities of the agency and improving consumer insight capabilities. He is a founder member of the JIC for TV research in China. Gilad became McCann Erickson World Group new business director for China earlier this year before moving to his current position at Starcom in July.

Warren Hui
Senior Consultant
Warren Hui joined MediaCom HK in 1995 as media executive. Before that, he had been worked as a consultant in investor relations field since 1994. He was transferred to MediaCom Guangzhou in 1996 to serve as key account supervisor for the Procter & Gamble (P&G) planning assignment. Warren also worked with such clients as Danone, Wrigley’s, and KSF on both planning and buying assignments. He left MediaCom in 2000 to work on the media buying side of P&G as a business director for their local buying agency. Warren started providing consultancy to Starcom China on media negotiation last year before being appointed to his current position.

Peter Zhi
Senior Consultant
Peter Zhi began his media career in 1993 with J. Walter Thompson (JWT) when helping to set up the agency office in Guangzhou. He started as a media buyer and became a buying manager, but transferred to become a media planner two years later. At JWT, he worked with such clients as Unilever, SC Johnson, Warner Lambert and Ford. In 1997, Peter became media director at MediaCom in Guangzhou, where he worked with such clients as Wrigley, P&G and Avon. He was also keen on spearheading new business for the agency and was eventually tapped to become business director for MediaCom. In 2001, Peter moved to FCB in Shanghai to head up their media team, which included work with SC Johnson, Gatorade and Tetrapak. Later that year he joined Starcom Guangzhou as Planning Director where he primarily serves Wrigley, Mead Johnson and Li Ning.

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