Dentsu global creative CEO Dick van Motman steps down

He becomes advisor to Tim Andree with immediate effect and will leave company by end of year.

Van Motman: leaves Dentsu after seven years
Van Motman: leaves Dentsu after seven years

Dick van Motman, Dentsu Aegis Network's global chief executive of content and creative who also serves as global president of Dentsu Brand Agencies, is stepping down.

He is leaving Dentsu after a seven-year tenure serving in top leadership positions at Dentsu and Dentsu Aegis in Asia, then globally. 

Van Motman immediately becomes an advisor to Dentsu Aegis executive chairman and chief executive Tim Andree, working mainly on transition until the end of the year, when he will leave the company. This coincides with Dentsu's move to form a "one Dentsu" corporate structure in the new year, but the exit is not directly linked to it. 

"I feel the time is right for me to pursue other ventures, where I can apply my global experience on a wider canvas," van Motman said, noting his passion for business transformation in positions across nine countries, three holding groups and recently leading a division with more than 7,000 staff. 

He told Campaign that he will be stepping up his involvement with start-ups and advisory boards in the fintech, adtech and healthtech spaces. He is also contemplating other opportunities "in due time".

The news comes just a day after Campaign reported that iProspect global chief executive Ruth Stubbs is leaving

Van Motman joined Dentsu in 2012 from DDB, where he was Greater China chief executive. During this time, the network made several key acquisitions, including Jayme Syfu Group in the Philippines and Dwi Sapta Group in Indonesia, among others, along with the expansion of existing agency brands to new markets.

In January 2018, van Motman was promoted to president of Dentsu creative agencies and that role was expanded earlier this year to global chief executive of creative for Dentsu Aegis, including responsibility for Mcgarrybowen, making van Motman a member of Dentsu Aegis' global executive team. 

Asked why he would leave now after the recent promotion, van Motman told Campaign that he understands why some might question this but that, while he helped develop the blueprint for Dentsu Aegis' next phase, this became "a very natural moment to take stock and ask if I am committing myself for the next phase. We sat down as a company and talked about it openly and I then decided to leave it in a very good staffing [position]."

Van Motman added: "Seven years ago, I joined as the first non-Japanese head for for Asia, transformed the company majorly through acquisitions and diversified talent away from being a Japanese agency for Japanese clients. It has been an exhilarating ride at Dentsu."

Thanking van Motman, Andree said he "leaves us in a strong position on our journey to cultivate a world-class global creative offering that is tech-enabled and ideas-led to deliver valuable brand and experience transformation." 

A version of this stort first appeared on Campaign Asia-Pacific