‘There’s a new wind of change’: Virtue hires VCCP’s Shirin Majid as European creative leader

Majid replaces Morten Grubak, who is moving to a global innovation role at the Vice Media agency.

Shirin Majid: will take up her new role in mid-August
Shirin Majid: will take up her new role in mid-August

Virtue, the creative agency that is part of Vice Media, has appointed Shirin Majid as executive creative director Europe. 

Majid starts in mid-August and joins after two years at VCCP, where she was deputy ECD. She replaces Morten Grubak, who has held the position for two years and is moving to a global innovation role within Virtue. Majid will work across 21 markets and 10 offices.

Speaking to Campaign, Majid said that after first working with Virtue about a decade ago, she had “always been tracking them – I was always a bit envious of the work they were doing”, which she described as “culturally impactful work that doesn’t overshadow the brand”.

Before joining VCCP, Majid’s career spanned a wide range of companies in London and New York, including Facebook, Havas Group agency Cake, PR agency Edelman, and another digitally led publisher, LadBible Group, where she was creative director.

Describing the appeal of working at a creative operation within a publishing company, Majid said: “What really appeals to me is this direct line to culture – you’ve not just creating [work] and working with media agencies [on planning campaigns], you’re immersing clients in it immediately.”

Majid compared the current time to a decade ago, when legacy businesses were faced with the challenges of adapting to a rapidly changing marketing landscape. “There’s a new interesting wind of change happening,” she said. “2010 was all about social and branded content, with more traditional agencies not able to get there.” 

At that point, she said, Virtue stood out because it “was about branded content and live events, and they redefined how brands were engaging with that. They’re doing it again in terms of this new change – you’ve got Covid, but [also] all these different socio-political events happening that are making clients have a new commitment to purpose again.

“They do this really unique brand of work that’s really purpose-driven and at the zeitgeist of culture.”

She pointed to work such as a recent campaign for Procter & Gamble brand Rejoice to increase the number of emojis depicting hijabs. Currently, there is only a single emoji, which Majid said was “not representative in culture. When you see the data behind it and the reach and representation, it’s almost mainstream relevance.”

Commenting on Majid’s appointment, Susan Pratchett, managing director of Virtue Europe, said: “Shirin is one of the best creatives in the business, with an incredible eye for creating culturally impactful work. Her experience speaks for itself and we are so thrilled she is joining Virtue to help take us into the next phase of growth across Europe and beyond; driving creative excellence and challenging us along the way. 

“We are building out London as one of our creative hubs and with Shirin at the helm – we can’t wait to see the next iteration of creativity shining through from the market and across the region.”

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