John Gale, Managing Director of Ogilvy Durban, has been appointed to the Ogilvy & Mather South Africa (O&M SA) Executive Committee (ExCo) Board.
With over 21 years with the Ogilvy group and, more recently, 13 years at the helm of the Durban office, Gale brings a wealth of knowledge and insight to the O&M SA Board.
A passionate brand-builder, Gale has, in turbulent global economic conditions, seen the Ogilvy & Mather Durban office, which incorporates Ogilvy & Mather Advertising, Ogilvy Action and Digital@Ogilvy, grow into one of the region’s advertising powerhouses.
“Most of South Africa’s industry hubs are concentrated in Johannesburg and Cape Town, and as such enjoy the lion’s share of the country’s advertising revenue. This presents some unique challenges for the industry in Durban,” says Gale. “Given these challenges, and the fact that we are currently in a global economic trough, we are enormously proud to have been able to not only sustain the business, but significantly grow it."
Growth of the business in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), coupled with some exciting new contracts on the horizon, means that O&M SA, a world-class multinational communications company, has a strong foothold in all three of South Africa’s economic hubs.
“We realise it is important for Ogilvy to have a footprint in each of the major business regions in the country,” says Gale. “It is also important from the perspective of a global brand that we are aligned when it comes to the implementation of the company’s processes and structures, not to mention those of our global clients.”
“While we work independently of each other, it is important and enriching to remain connected and involved in important areas of the business such as implementation of group strategy, human resources, training and technology. My appointment to the ExCo will ensure our Durban and KZN interests are synergized with the rest of the group.”
"I am thrilled to become a member of the ExCo as I have gained important insights over the years as MD in Durban,” says Gale. “I believe I will be able to add further perspectives and value to the continued success of one of South Africa's leading advertising groups."
Some of the Point Waterfront-based Ogilvy Durban current clients include Boxer Superstores, Decorland, Defy, eThekwini Transport Authority, Field Band Foundation, Game, Lesotho Milling, Marico, SABMiller, Sun International (Sibaya Casino & Entertainment Kingdom and the Wild Coast Sun), The Sharks and Unilever.
Gale has worked on major brands such as Castle Lager, Castle Lite, Hansa Pilsener, Debonairs Pizza, Volvo, Mica, Continental. While at Ogilvy Africa (1998/9), he was primarily involved in managing brands for key clients with business interests and activities in Sub-Saharan Africa.