Microsoft appoints Hart to head up advertising and online business

Microsoft has appointed Andy Hart, a former MD of Associated Northcliffe Digital, to head up its new advertising & online (A&O) division in the UK following its recent global reorganisation.

Microsoft: appoints Hart to head up advertising and online business
Microsoft: appoints Hart to head up advertising and online business

Earlier this month (5 July), Marketing unveiled that Microsoft was overhauling its UK operations to create three divisions: advertising & online (A&O); marketing & operations (M&O) and consumer channels group (CCG).

Andy Hart will be responsible for driving display and search advertising and growing revenue and share of time spent online with MSN and Bing. It is understood his remit will cover that of former commercial director at Microsoft Advertising Chris Maples, who left the company in January this year.

Hart, who has held a number of non-executive director roles over the past few years, most recently worked as managing director of Associated Northcliffe Digital for just under six years.

Prior to that he held a number of high profile roles, including chief executive of Ask Jeeves UK and managing director of Sunday Business.

He joins the company with immediate effect, reporting directly to Gordon Frazer, managing director of Microsoft UK.

Neil Thompson, formerly general manager of Microsoft's retail sales and marketing division has been appointed as CCG lead, tasked with strengthening relationships with retailers.

Meanwhile it has confirmed that Scott Dodds, general manager of the business marketing division, has been appointed as M&O lead.

Microsoft said it is currently looking for a new role for Ashley Highfield within the new structure, who was managing director and vice-president of the consumer and online division before it became merged with the central marketing group to create M&O.

It was tipped by industry sources that Highfield was in line to head up A&O. He will be working closely with Hart and his leadership team until October this year.