David Coombs Named as New Cheil UK CEO

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Current CEO Peter Zillig announces departure to take up new client-side opportunity

Digital marketing and advertising agency, Cheil UK, announces that its CEO Peter Zillig has resigned after three and a half years at the company, to be succeeded by its present Head of Strategic Services, David Coombs, as of 1st July.

Coombs has been at Cheil UK for four years and is part of the Senior Management Team at the agency. He has reported directly to Zillig during his tenure and has played an integral role in driving growth and profitability in the UK market as well as developing new strategic digital services. As the UK chief executive, Coombs will now lead a UK team of nearly 200 employees. Prior to joining Cheil UK, Coombs was Head of Planning and Strategy at AKQA and Digital Strategy Director at OMD.

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Since joining as CEO in 2016, Zillig has overseen an ambitious digital growth plan allowing the agency to more than double its revenues through the development of innovative new products and services and build a business with over 60% of its income in the digital space. Zillig has also made significant new appointments across the senior management team to build Cheil’s digital and strategic consultancy capabilities, and under his leadership the UK business has delivered award-winning campaigns for the likes of Samsung and Nivea.

Having resigned his position in February with plans to take up a new client-side opportunity, Zillig will remain at Cheil until the end of June in an advisory position, where he will be continuing to work with Coombs, Byunghoon So – Cheil’s European CEO & President – and the wider management team on succession planning, to provide continuity and further the agency’s growth. Zillig will be making a further announcement about his new role in due course.

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Peter Zillig said “I am very proud of the agency’s record over the last 3+ years and it’s been an absolute honour working with the team to grow and shape the business. Together we have built out some innovative new products and services, all underpinned by a strong data, tech and creative platform. Our culture is also stronger than ever, and I have full confidence in Dave to take the agency to new levels of success.”

Byunghoon So, Cheil’s European CEO & President said “It’s been a pleasure working alongside Pete who has created significant growth and change in the business during his tenure. Dave’s digital heritage and strategic mind makes him the ideal candidate and obvious choice to continue this growth story for Cheil UK. I look forward to working with Dave and the rest of the management team to drive our Performance Marketing capability and our full-service offering.”

David Coombs, incoming CEO said “I am thrilled to be given the opportunity to drive Cheil UK forward as we move into the next chapter of our growth story.  I would personally like to thank Pete for everything he has done for Cheil over the last 3.5 years and look forward to continuing the trajectory he has set us on. All the work we have done building Cheil’s expertise as a data driven marketing agency with technology and creativity at its heart means we are well placed to achieve this. As we continue to partner with Samsung, Beiersdorf and our other clients in their growth plans, we will also continue to expand and welcome new clients into the family.”

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