Lorca takes over Initiative Europe

Sergio Lorca, the former Latin American regional director of Initiative Media, has been named as the new European chief executive of the network, replacing Jeffrey Merrihue, who becomes president of global new-business development.

Sergio Lorca, the former Latin American regional director of

Initiative Media, has been named as the new European chief executive of

the network, replacing Jeffrey Merrihue, who becomes president of global

new-business development.



Lorca started his career as a civil engineer. He has worked in all

aspects of marketing services, including working on the client side at

Unilever in Spain and as a media owner, most recently as general

manager, commercial development, at Prisa, part of the El Pais

group.



Merrihue, who has been in the European role for less than two years,

will also spearhead the development of Initiative’s econometric

offering.



Marie-Jose Forissier, the president and chief operating officer of

Initiative Media Worldwide, explained: ’Jeffrey is so marketing-focused

that he was devoting more and more of his attention on developing new

services - such as econometrics. He couldn’t do both, and I am thrilled

to have Sergio back with us.’



While Lorca will head Europe from the London office, Merrihue’s move

leaves his other role, as chief executive of Initiative London,

vacant.



The managing director of London, Roy Jeans, will report to Lorca, as

will Mike Tunnicliffe, the managing director of sister agency Western.

Initiative says it will not appoint a new chief executive in the near

future, fuelling speculation that a merger of the two agencies is

imminent. The lack of a London chief executive for Initiative could pave

the way for a smoother merger if it goes ahead.



Since joining Initiative in 1992 as managing director of Initiative

Spain, Lorca has risen through the ranks, most recently rolling out the

brand across South America.



’Initiative has been a big part of my life,’ Lorca said, ’and I have

spent many hours and days building the company. To come and run Europe

is a dream offer.’



His appointment underlines Forissier’s objective to recruit people with

non-traditional media backgrounds. She said: ’I want people in the top

positions who are not classical, expected media players. Sergio comes in

with fresh eyes, especially having the client perspective.’



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