Interviews, insight & analysis on digital media & marketing

NDA’s Talent Tracker column provides a regular update on which companies are recruiting who and from where.

Talent Tracker: 7DOTS, Tangent, Inspired Thinking Group and more

Oliver Fairlie has joined digital experience agency 7DOTS as an Account Director. Fairlie will be reporting to the Client Experience Director Missy Clements. He will take the lead on accounts including Clearwater International, Acrospire, Nelsons and Rite Hite among others. He comes with a decade’s experience working for companies including management consultancy CACI Ltd and creative marketing agency RAPP. He has worked with brands including Volkswagen Group, KFC, and Krispy Kreme to deliver exceptional customer experiences.

Tangent, the enterprise digital product consultancy, is turning AI hype into business reality with an investment of £5 million in a specialist AI division. Łukasz Mądrzak-Wecke joins Tangent as Head of AI from WPP agency Wunderman Thompson to lead a cohort of in-house AI architects and engineers, alongside a specialist delivery team. Based in Poland, they will implement bespoke solutions based on a proposition that merges innovation with pragmatism to deliver real results in the field of AI, giving enterprise-level organisations access to a competitive edge. 

Inspired Thinking Group (ITG), a specialist in tech-enabled agile content, has appointed Andrew Swinand as Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) to build on the company’s exponential growth and deliver its mission to transform marketing for brands around the world. Swinand joins ITG on the back of further recognition for their approach to brand activation, alongside another year of strong growth. Recent developments include the announcement of a new content production hub with John Lewis Partnership, and their technology being named a ‘Strong Performer’ in The Forrester Wave™: Digital Asset Management Systems 2024 and ‘Leader’ in the Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for Content Marketing Platforms 2023. The appointment sees Simon Ward move into a Founder role, continuing to be a passionate ambassador for ITG and adviser to Andrew Swinand.

Version 1, a specialist in digital transformation, has announced the appointment of Louise Lahiff as Chief Operating Officer (COO) and Patrick Cooney as Chief Financial Officer (CFO). This forms part of the company’s ongoing strategy to drive ambitious growth and expansion throughout the business, and in turn deliver an even stronger and more compelling offer to customers. Lahiff has been with Version 1 for a decade and in this new role she will oversee the outcomes for delivery and technology implementations for all customers, leading the delivery functions across the UK, Ireland, India and the US. She has held previous positions including Director of Strategy, People and Planning where she was instrumental in facilitating the necessary structures and support systems for rapid expansion and scale on a global level. Lahiff was the first woman to join the board of Version 1’s software entity in July 2022. Patrick Cooney joins Version 1 as CFO following a highly successful tenure at Kerry Group plc, where he served as Europe CFO for nine years, helping the organisation to navigate several geopolitical challenges including Brexit, cost inflation and the impact of COVID-19. Cooney will spearhead Version 1’s financial growth strategy, driving the business safely during a time of rapid expansion through acquisition and progression into new markets. His charter will include building a high performing finance team that can support business performance and growth, while remaining grounded in the three sides of the company’s strategic operating model – customer first, empowered people and a strong organisation. Cooney takes over from Andrew Langford who is retiring after almost seven years as Version 1 CFO, having successfully steered the organisation through several acquisitions as well as securing a new partner and majority shareholder deal with Partners Group in 2022.

Miroma Founders Network (MFN), the joint venture between Miroma Group and Founders Forum Group, has named former Kinetic UK CEO Ali MacCallum as Managing Director of the agency for ambitious founder-led businesses. MacCallum, who has previously led media agencies including Omnicom’s M2M and WPP’s mSix, has been integral in the rapid growth stories of several major brands throughout his career, most notably Lovefilm, Paddy Power, Audible, Notonthehighstreet and Just Eat. In his new role MacCallum will build and implement growth plans for early-stage start-ups and scale-ups geared towards sustained customer acquisition and retention, focusing on the key metrics these businesses need to hit to support them along the funding pathways.

Xapads, a specialist in advanced programmatic and innovative ad-tech solutions, has announced the appointment of James Eppinger as Country Head, UK as it expands its operations into the market and looks forward to scaling its growth across key territories in Western Europe. As Country Head, Eppinger will be responsible for building a specialist team to roadmap innovation requirements for local demand, while securing partnerships with technology and supply partners. Eppinger has a history of specializing and driving growth for businesses during pivotal points of development, including a number of local market launches. His extensive expertise has significantly helped brands expand in the ad-tech market throughout the years. Most recently, he held the position of Country Head UK & EMEA at Datawrkz and prior to that, Regional Director of EMEA at Connatix, where he continued to make substantial contributions to the field. 

Workhuman® has announced several key leadership appointments. Richard Maclachlan joins as Chief Marketing Officer. Having joined Workhuman in 2021, Maclachlan quickly rose from VP of Integrated Strategy to SVP, Global Head of Marketing, demonstrating a growth-first mindset and a proven ability to scale operations effectively. As CMO, Maclachlan will oversee the Global Marketing team, handling responsibilities across brand and creative, product marketing, digital transformation, growth marketing, revenue operations, and global communication. Kevin Heinzelman has been appointed Senior Vice President, Product Management. Initially joining Workhuman in 2019, Heinzelman has held several leadership positions throughout his tenure across ecommerce and product management, most recently serving as VP, Product Management. As SVP of Product Management, Heinzelman will oversee Workhuman’s Product Management and Design, Business Analytics, and Workhuman iQ teams, and will leverage the collective expertise of these teams to guide and accelerate Workhuman’s momentum toward AI dominance. Shmulik Barel joins as Vice President, Product Engineering. Barel will work to create hybrid intelligence systems that blend human and AI to redefine efficiency and innovation in the workplace. Based in the company’s Dublin headquarters, Barel will apply learning from his various C-level roles across operations, product, and engineering to enhance Workhuman’s core product suite and develop new AI-driven tools that facilitate dynamic workforce and employee engagement. Jose Malpartida takes on the role of Vice President, Product Management, Recognition Solutions. With over a decade of experience in product management, including various leadership roles in companies like Amazon and Wayfair, Malpartida will leverage his passion for innovation and optimising customer experiences to develop and deliver enhanced social recognition solutions that will help Workhuman customers foster cultures of appreciation and connection. To achieve this, Malpartida will focus on integrating AI and other emerging technologies into Workhuman’s technological infrastructure.

Mangopay, a modular and flexible payment infrastructure provider that offers 360° fraud prevention for platforms, announces the appointment of Ariel Shoham as Vice President of Product for Risk. Shoham joins to lead the product vision, strategy and roadmap for Identity and Fraud Protection at Mangopay, including its award-winning cybersecurity solution. Shoham brings over 25 years of multi-disciplinary experience in AI/ML, E-commerce, Regtech, Fintech and Risk/Fraud Detection and Prevention. He joins from Meta (formerly Facebook) where he established and led the KYC/KYB team, enabling regulatory compliance and financial integrity, and building out its financial compliance platform. Prior to that, Shoham led product management at Forter including identity and account protection, linking identities and accounts to prevent fraud and abuse, protection against privacy and data breaches, maximising safety and enabling frictionless experiences for authenticated customers. He also co-founded Ed-Tech start-up Smart Sparrow acquired by Pearson.