Cheil Worldwide is to expand its regional operations into Saudi Arabia and Jordan.
The move follows the appointment of Azmi Yafi as chief operating officer for the Middle East and North Africa in August and forms part of the agency’s global mandate to establish Cheil as a creative agency force. Yafi, whose previous roles include stints as FP7’s CEO for the UAE and regional MD at Impact BBDO, said the Saudi office is expected to open in the first quarter of next year.
“I’m in the process of setting up Saudi, to be followed very quickly by Jordan. That’s going to happen in the next four months,” said Yafi. Cheil is Korea’s leading agency and the 17th largest marketing communications group in the world. At the time of Yafi’s appointment, Andrew Yi, president and CEO for MEA, said the agency would be managing the opening of a number of new offices from its HQ in Dubai.
The agency’s plans have been set back, however, by the departure of Milos Ilic, who joined the agency as executive creative director in September. It is understood he returned to his native Serbia for Eid and did not return, leaving the agency without an ECD.