MSQ poaches Wunderman Thompson's Robert Goodwin as first chief data officer

Goodwin has been head of data strategy at WPP agency since 2018.

Goodwin: also worked at JWT and Lida
Goodwin: also worked at JWT and Lida

MSQ Partners, owner of agencies including The Gate, Walk-In Media and Twentysix, has appointed Robert Goodwin as the group's first chief data officer.

Goodwin joins from Wunderman Thompson, where he was partner and head of data strategy. He was previously data planning director at J Walter Thompson (which later merged with fellow WPP network Wunderman), before stints at Lida and data-science start-up Outra, where he was chief client officer.

He joined Wunderman Thompson in November 2018 and was the global data lead on the Shell account, and data lead for BT and EE.

At MSQ, Goodwin will work closely with Stack, MSQ's customer acquisition agency, while also supporting The Gate, Walk-In Media and business-to-business shop Stein IAS.

Kate Howe, executive director at MSQ, said: “Our mission is to help businesses build high EQ [emotional intelligence] brands that attract and grow valuable customers. In order to do that, we need to make sure that we provide joined-up, cutting-edge data capabilities at every touchpoint.

"That’s why it’s important to us to have someone who can drive our data offer across the group, and as soon as we met Rob, we knew that he was the right person to do just that.”

Goodwin is the latest in a series of senior hires for MSQ in the past year. Howe joined from Dentsu Aegis Network in February, while former MEC global chief executive Charles Courtier was named chairman last year.

In October 2019, MSQ backed the launch of Walk-In Media, the shop set up by former Blue 449 chief executive Simon Davis, and later appointed Malcolm Boxall, also formerly of Blue 449, to lead media investment. MSQ is also in the process of acquiring Be Heard and its three agencies MMT Digital, Freemavens and Agenda21.