Publicis Groupe appoints Tahaab Rais as chief strategy officer in the Middle East & Turkey

Publicis Groupe has announced the appointment of Tahaab Rais as its first regional chief strategy officer working across Publicis Groupe agencies for the Middle East & Turkey region.

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Rais is one of the most awarded creative effectiveness leaders in the world, consistently leading agencies to top 10 rankings in the Global Effective Index and WARC Effective 100. In his new role, Rais will be responsible for driving the Groupe’s Power of One strategy, as well as leading integrated strategy across creative, digital, media and consultancy disciplines.

Bassel Kakish, chief executive officer – Publicis Groupe Middle East & Turkey, said: “Having successfully established the ‘Power of One’ model in this region, now is the time to build and scale even more extraordinary solutions for global and regional brands, and Tahaab has the perfect creative, data and strategy credentials to do so. As our first regional chief strategy officer, he will bring our best talent together, across agencies and across the region. These multi-disciplinary teams will unlock new opportunities for Publicis Groupe and our clients as we continue to chart our course in the Middle East and Turkey region.”

The Power of One approach consolidates all market expertise within one holding group, forming optimal teams across Saatchi & Saatchi, Leo Burnett, Publicis Worldwide, Digitas, MSL, Prodigious, Sapient, Epsilon and Publicis Media. Leveraging this strategy, Rais will work in close collaboration with leadership teams across the business to further upgrade the product, create value and drive long term growth for clients.

Rais said: “I’ve always respected Publicis Groupe’s interconnectedness, so the opportunity to build on the Power of One vision was too good to pass up. The role I hope to play is that of a ‘connector’. There are so many opportunities that can be unlocked by bringing people together across such diverse companies, disciplines and skillsets, and Publicis Groupe is the only network in the region with the scale and depth of resources to allow this. I am very grateful to be a part of it all with Bassel and everyone across the region. Together, we will achieve even more meaningfulness, effectiveness and fame for Publicis Groupe’s clients – both current and future.”

Rais joins Publicis Groupe from FP7 McCann and McCann Worldgroup where he served as regional strategy head and was on the global Strategy ExCo leading the company’s strategy, effectiveness and data practices. Prior to that role, Rais served as regional strategy director at J. Walter Thompson Worldwide.

With over 650 top tier awards, Rais’ creative effectiveness credentials are unparalleled. His most recent accolades include winning multiple Grand Prix awards at global award platforms and leading teams for several consecutive years to rank #1 globally and regionally in the WARC 100 reports and #1 globally and regionally on the Global Effies Index.

Outside of advertising, Rais is an awarded film director, songwriter, speaker and writer, who helps to solve societal problems through his own personal non-profit venture.

Based in Dubai, Rais’ appointment is effective immediately. It follows last week’s announcement that e& (formerly Etisalat Group) has appointed Publicis Groupe as its creative partner in UAE. Publicis Groupe will provide creative services for all e& business pillars in support of their transformation journey.