Leaders Jury 2015


Nikki Mendonça, President - OMD EMEA, UK

Nikki Mendonça is the EMEA President of OMD, the largest and most awarded marketing communications company in the world. She presides over 5,000+ employees, across 80+ offices in 63 markets, and oversees $19 billion in marketing communications investment from leading world class companies including McDonald's, PepsiCo, Estee Lauder, Liberty Global and Walt Disney.

Since joining OMD in 2002, in addition to rolling out the PHD network across the region from 2005-07, Nikki has grown OMD EMEA’s billings by over 200%, driven consistent year-on-year growth despite the financial crisis of 2008- 2012, including a 12% increase in revenue in 2014, and been a key player in orchestrating some of the world’s largest client consolidations (Renault Nissan, Estee Lauder, Walt Disney and Liberty Global ).

Under Nikki’s leadership, OMD has won numerous prestigious accolades, including being named the ‘most creative agency in the world’ for nine years running by Gunn Report for Media, taking the title of M&M Global’s Agency Network of the Year and the inaugural IPA Effectiveness Network of the Year in 2014, as well as most recently being awarded AdWeek’s Global Media Agency of the Year in Jan 2015.

As part of the Global Executive Committee, Nikki has played an instrumental role in the development and roll-out of OMD’s game-changing operating system, VISION. A data-driven platform that drives a more collaborative, integrated way of working in creating marketing solutions for clients.

Prior to joining OMD EMEA, Nikki ran the Strategic Marketing Division at Capital Radio Plc, responsible for the commercial research and marketing of all 19 radio stations owned by the group, helping to drive an annual turnover of $190m. Previous to that she worked at Leo Burnett UK running the $150m+ media divisions of Procter & Gamble, Kellogg's and Grand Met, and at CIA Media Network trading TV airtime for Kraft and Wrigley’s.

Nikki is a fierce champion of a mobile first approach to marketing communications and sits on various industry advisory boards including Advertising Week Europe which attracts over 25,000 delegates each year.


Uwe Alten, Managing Director - Havas Sports & Entertainment Germany

I started my career in the event and sports entertainment business back in 1989, where sports and entertainment started to become a relevant platform for brands. In the 90th I built one of the largest German event businesses with a focus on live marketing and sponsorship activation. Especially with the new role of live marketing in brand building I had the privilege to execute a large number of outstanding corporate and public events and the possibility to implement major sponsorship activations at UEFA Euro's and FIFA World Cup's. I got much closer to media agencies from 2005/2006, because we had the innovative, exiting, exclusive and engaging content to be delivered by them. So I had the chance to become part the evolvement of the media business towards a more digitally and content driven industry. Leading the Havas Sports & Entertainment business here in Germany, I’m as well responsible for all social and content activities at Havas Media Germany.

Christof Baron, Chairman Germany / Joint-CEO EMEA - Mindshare GmbH, Germany

Christof has been working in the media business for 27 years – 25 of them at Mindshare. He started his career after finished studies in advertising and communication economics as Media Planner at Ogilvy & Mather in 1989. After 10 years of planning- and consulting for a range of national and international clients, such as Unilever, Kraft Foods, Allianz Group, Ford Motor Company and American Express, he was promoted to Head of Trading. During his time with Mindshare. Christof worked for a wide range clients from nearly all industries, but with a focus on clients within automotive, FMCG, entertainment, telecommunication, airlines and the financial service sector - either as client lead or as head of trading.

Christof was appointed COO in 2005. Following this, he was announced CEO of Mindshare Germany on January 1st 2009. In 2011 he was promoted to Regional Leader and member of the global board, overseeing Germany, Austria, Switzerland and CEE. In October 2013 he became Chairman of Mindshare Germany and Joint CEO EMEA, with further regional responsibilities over Ukraine, Italy, Turkey, Middle East and North Africa (MENA).

"Media its my life. No other industry show the same dynamic and innovation power as the media and communication industry, were creativity, technology, intelligence and commerce are connected so tightly. The internet we have experienced so far and its impact on society and the economy, its power to destroy traditional processes and to establish a new reality, was only the prelude of the real digital age. The "Internet of Things" will lay like an invisible net over all areas of life and forcing virtually all industries to reinvent themselves. This development is a huge challenge for the advertising and communications industry too. My personal ambition is to form a leading operation which is ahead of the game, committed to operate as navigator and trusted advisor for the benefit of our clients."

Christof is married, has two kids, and lives in Frankfurt / Germany. A native of Germany, Christof is often found on his bike in the mountains, trying to set a new personal best for the hill climb. Credo: Never give up!

Alkan Eraltan, Marketing Services Group Director - Yıldız Holding, Turkey

An experienced marketing executive with over 20 years in marketing communication, advertising and strategic communication planning for multinational and local companies, Alkan’s expertise draws from industries such as FMCGs, Telecommunications, Media Planning & Buying Agency. He has worked for companies such as Yıldız Holding (a large conglomerate in Turkey with overseas operations), Turkcell, and MediaCom WPP.

Currently, Alkan Eraltan oversees the marketing, advertising and media planning for over 100 brands at Yıldız Holding . As Marketing Services Group Director, Alkan oversees both digital and conventional media, ATL production, agency management, packaging and licencing for all Yıldız Holding’s companies and brands.

A member of World Federation of Advertisers (WFA), Advertisers’ Association of Turkey and Advertising Self-regulatory Board in Turkey.

Alkan is a guest speaker at various universities and conferences and also lectures at Bilgi University, Next Academy in Istanbul.

Thomas Funk, CEO - DDB Group GmbH, Germany

Thomas Funk began his career in 1995 with Rapp Collins Hamburg, where he held various leading positions, culminating in Chief Executive Officer. In 2007 Funk was appointed to the Global Board of RAPP located in London and took care of the integration of Communications, Data and Digital Media. In the summer of 2011 Thomas Funk came back to Hamburg and joined DDB Group.

DDB Group is one of the leading creative agencies with offices in Berlin, Duesseldorf, Hamburg and Wolfsburg. Filling the position of Chief Executive Officer, his focus now is on innovation, product & services and the expansion of the consulting expertise of the group. In his rare spare time he likes to travel and play golf.

Bilge Gönenç, Marketing Communications Manager - Turkcell Superonline, Turkey

Bilge Gonenc joined the Turkcell Superonline team at 2013, as marketing communications manager, in charge of all advertising,digital,social media and media planning activities.

Previously,Bilge acted as marketing communications unit head at TTNET and had many key roles in Altavia Turkey, Dia /Carrefour and Tesco during her career.

Bilge Gonenc is gratuated from Galatarasay University in Istanbul, and has a DEA Marketing from IAE de Lille-France.

Anke Herbener, CEO - Digitas LBi Germany & Switzerland

With over a decade of leadership expertise in the industry, Anke can count herself to the pioneers in the German digital agency landscape. As digital marketing and media specialist with strong leadership skills as well as high negotiation skills on international level, Anke is responsible for the agency's strategy and management across all German speaking markets. Her areas of expertise include digital transformation consulting, digital strategy and implementation for any kinds of digital projects and beyond. She frequently appears on the speaking and judging circuit of digital conferences and award shows and represents the German landscape of digital agencies as vice chairwoman of the Bundesverband Digitale Wirtschaft (BVDW) e.V.

Tamas Kovacs, Senior Expert International Market Communications - Deutsche Telekom AG, Germany

Tamas has extensive experience in marketing and brand communications. In 2007, Tamas worked for advertising agency, Ogilvy & Mather, and in 2008 he switched to the client side working for the market leader Telco company in Hungary, Magyar Telekom (part of Deutsche Telekom) with brands T-Mobile and T-Home. In his latest position he was Deputy Head of the advertising department where he led the re-branding project of Telekom.

In 2013, Tamas moved on to work for Deutsche Telekom as Senior Expert at International Market Communications. Now he is managing and coordinating international advertising campaigns and supporting communication activities of 13 markets.

Ana Krstulović, Marketing Manager Premium Brands - DZagrebačka pivovara – Molson Coors, Croatia

Ana is marketing manager at Molson Coors Croatia, nation’s leading brewer. She has been in the bubbly beer business for the past eight years, leading various online and offline projects – and some in between - for several brands and is currently responsible for strategic planning and development of all marketing activities for company premium portfolio: Beck’s, Stella Artois, Corona Extra, Leffe, Hoegaarden, Carling and Staropramen.

Julia Kümmel, Social Media Lead - Zalando SE, Germany

Julia Kümmel is a digital native working currently as social media lead at Zalando SE. She focusses on innovative process and user oriented digital marketing where she applies agile virtues, for example by rolling out Lean Kanban. Julia is also working as a Co-maker at making things happen. Her focus when working on maker artifacts is mainly wearable electronics and the internet of things.

Yücel Kurt, Global Digital Brand Manager - Beiersdorf AG, Germany

Yücel develops global digital marketing campaigns for NIVEA, the world’s No. 1 skin care brand.

Christian Rätsch, CEO - Saatchi & Saatchi Germany

Christian Rätsch collected his first professional experiences at the advertising agencies Grey and EURO RSCG (now Havas) where he completed his apprenticeship.

After this he advised companies on communication and brand leadership together with a partner. The most important client was the General Association of Advertising Agencies e.v. (GWA). The manual for young advertisers called „Advertising makes you rich, famous and sexy“ („Werbung macht reich, berühmt und sexy“), for example, dates back to these times.

After graduating from Humboldt University in Berlin, where he studied Business Economics with focus on Marketing, he joined the business consultancy BBDO Consulting. There he gained further marketing experience in the field of Strategic Brand Leadership and Communication through national and international consulting projects with German Dax-groups.

His path then lead him to the ICT-company T-Systems International where he established the brand and the marketing organisation as Director of Corporate Marketing and Communications. Under his leadership the company claimed substantial marketing and communication awards.

Having switched to Telekom Deutschland Christian Rätsch managed the marketing for the business clients mass market. In a highly competitive market he secured the market leadership for the company, developed successful products and expanded the sales channels.

Today Christian Rätsch is back on the agency side and is now Chief Executive Officer of Saatchi & Saatchi Germany with responsibility for the three offices in Berlin, Düsseldorf and Frankfurt. He is a passionate advocate of digital communications and lives by the claim „to put communication in a nutshell“. For more information on Christian Rätsch and how digitalization simplifies our lives please visit

Sven Weisbrich, CEO - UM - Universal McCann GmbH, Germany

In February 2013 Sven joined UM Germany (IPG Mediabrands) as Chief Executive Officer.

He started his career as media planner at Mindshare in 1998 before he focused on digital strategies as UM’s Director Digital.

In 2008 he switched industries and moved over to the creative side, heading up strategic planning at Razorfish (Publicis Groupe) to lead new business initiatives and invent Connections Planning as their new discipline. In 20011 he took over the digital business at Wunderman Germany (WPP) as Chief Digital Officer working closely with global brands such as Microsoft, Lufthansa and Vodafone.

Today, Sven’s role as UM’s CEO is to implement the global vision of IPG Mediabrands. Within the last year he hired new talents from other industries (marketers, publishers, science organizations) and worked with the UM leadership team to craft the transformation strategy for UM. As a result, the agency service portfolio was diversified by launching the disciplines such as UM Marketing Intelligence (research and data science) and UM Studios (content, brand experience), to give brands a competitive advantage.

Since February 2015 Sven is also in charge of the network’s digital product in Germany, MAP (Mediabrands Audience Platform), as Managing Director. Sven’s mission is to grow the digital business of this agency. Further he plans to combine topics like performance, content and mobile in a smarter way with more intelligent, creative and data-driven benefits for IPG Mediabrands’ clients.

Sven regularly speaks at conferences, works as lecturer at business and marketing universities and jury member at international award shows such as Eurobest and New Media Award. He lives with his wife and two kids close to Frankfurt am Main, Germany.


When & Where

Book your room @ The Myriad by Sana Hotels, where the event takes place! 



Constantine Kamaras

Chairman of the Board of Directors - IAB Europe

Daniel Knapp

Senior Director Advertising Research - IHS (UK)

Alex Newman

Head of Mobile EMEA - OMD EMEA (UK)

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