Ben Langdon, the chairman and chief executive of McCann-Erickson UK Group, is to take on responsibility for McCann's media network across Europe.
As regional director of Universal McCann Europe, the Middle East and Africa Langdon takes on direct responsibility for a media agency for the first time. His new responsibilities are in addition to his current role of run-ning the group's UK outpost. The appointment will end rumours that Langdon has been considering a post at McCann-Erickson's San Fran- cisco office.
His extended remit comes in the wake of a restructure at Universal McCann Worldwide, which has seen Robin Kent, who headed Europe, become second in command to Universal Worldwide's chairman, Ira Carlin. Kent's new title is president of Universal McCann Worldwide.
Kent was promoted in recognition of his development of Universal's media business independently from McCann-Erickson and his leadership in promoting and adapting proprietary research programmes and strategy methods. He will take up his promotion from the beginning of next year.
The extension of Langdon's remit echoes an increasing trend for creative agency heads moving into media, as witnessed with this week's news that Nick Brien, the chief executive of Leo Burnett, is taking a pivotal role at Starcom MediaVest Group in the US.
Carlin said of Kent's appointment: 'When Universal McCann was launched last year as a worldwide operation, we set out to create a media services firm with a unique global footprint. We believed then, as we do now, that the highest levels of expertise and clout could be achieved as a media specialist while also finding a way to elevate media strategically within the entire brand-building and communications management process.'
The UK office of Universal has also rejigged its management, with Pru Parkinson, the joint managing director of Western, joining as chief executive, while Chris Shaw, the managing director of the media agency, becomes the chairman, a post previously held by Langdon.