NEW YORK, March 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- In a move designed to sustain its momentum coming out of a year that included winning one the biggest media pitches of 2010 and scooping up a slew of industry awards for its breakthrough work for HBO, PHD US has named Craig Atkinson to the newly created role of President and Chief Digital Officer.
In his new role, Atkinson will oversee all digital resources and integration and will serve on the agency's management team.
Atkinson joins PHD from parent company Omnicom Media Group, where he led the McDonald's US business at agency OMD, playing an integral role in the iconic restaurant brands expansion across digital platforms; he also held the title of OMD's Chief Acquisitions Officer, directing the strategic development of digital channels. According to Page Thompson, Omnicom Media Group CEO, North America, "With his combined background in account planning and digital expertise, Craig was our first and best choice to lead the integration of digital, analytics and channel planning at PHD US."
"Craig's experience in building the digital integration model for McDonald's, combined with his knowledge of the broader emerging channel marketplace, made him the ideal candidate for this new position; and his forward-focused perspective will be an invaluable asset to the team that has built PHD into the agency of the future," says Andrew McLean, CEO, PHD US. "I'm delighted to add his hire to an ever-growing list of 'wins' for PHD."
Atkinson joined OMD in 2006 as Digital Director and took on the role of overall Group Account Director on the McDonald's business in 2008. In this role, Craig led strategy development and execution of the national media plan, with a special focus on digital and emerging media strategy, generating strong brand results and a record increase in sales.
A true interactive marketing pioneer, Atkinson entered the field in the mid-1990s, subsequently holding key roles at Modem Media, Digitas, and Arc Worldwide, leading digital marketing strategy and program development for clients such as Intel, Michelin, Washington Mutual, and the U.S. Army.
Discussing his new role, Atkinson explained the critical challenge the industry faces in achieving digital integration, saying, "Digital integration can only be achieved when digital is positioned at the center of an organization, and that requires a level of philosophical and organizational change that can be daunting. Fortunately, change is part of the DNA at PHD. It's evident in the groundbreaking work that won them Mobile Agency of the Year and Media Plan of the Year in 2010; it's putting them on the short list for the big pitches in 2011; it's why PHD will be able to deliver on the integration mandate for the long term. And it's why I'm here."
Atkinson takes on his new role at PHD April 1. According to Omnicom Media Group CEO North America Page Thompson, in the interim Atkinson will assist in transitioning his duties on McDonald's to his successor, OMD Midwest Digital Director Michael Solomon.
Founded in London in 1990 as the first strategic media agency, PHD (www.phdnetwork.com) is a proven innovator in communications design and execution with 2,000 employees in over 60 countries.
The PHD network is part of the Omnicom Media Group (www.omnicommediagroup.com), a division of Omnicom Group Inc. (NYSE :OMC ) (www.omnicomgroup.com). Omnicom is a leading global marketing and corporate communications company. Omnicom's branded networks and numerous specialty firms provide advertising, media, direct and promotional marketing, public relations and other specialty communications services to over 5,000 clients in more than 100 countries
SOURCE Omnicom Group Inc.