Forster to lead Oliver U-Studio as Katter nets new role

U-Studio: Wunderman Thompson's Forster succeeds Katter

Oliver: Wunderman Thompson’s Simone Forster succeeds Alison Katter who is taking on a wider global role at U-Studio operation

Inhouse agency specialist Oliver has hired Wunderman Thompson chief growth officer Simone Forster in a shake-up of its dedicated Unilever operation, U-Studio, which has 21 offices across 18 countries around the world.

Forster, who takes up the role of global managing director, succeeds Alison Katter, who is moving to a new global MD for multiple major clients.

Having started her career in account management at Saatchi & Saatchi in the mid-Nineties, Forster joined JWT in 2005, where she led several of the company’s global client partnerships. She took on her most recent role when the agency merged with Wunderman, overseeing the integration of the two agencies.

Reporting to global clients CEO Richard Stainer, Forster will work alongside U-Studio global editor-in-chief Shannon Kalkstein.

Stainer added: “Simone’s record in leading global accounts speaks for itself, but it is her passion for both her clients’ business and her people’s well-being that truly shines through.

“She shares our human values, our dedication to effectiveness and our unwavering commitment to inclusion, equity and diversity. I am proud to welcome her to the U-Studio and Oliver family and look forward to her success in this hugely important role.”

On Katter’s move, Stainer said: “After playing such a fundamental role growing U-Studio to the global operation it is today, it’s with immense gratitude and pleasure that we welcome Alison to a newly-created, and critical role, from where she’ll lead our continued development of bespoke systems and solutions for brands.”

Forster added: “I’ve watched Oliver’s success from afar and, after meeting the team, affirm that this is where I need to be. U-Studio has been truly revolutionary in pioneering a new model for the industry.

“It’s proven that in-house teams can be full-service, can be creative and can be totally effective when it comes to making work that matters to customers. I look forward to meeting everyone at the studio in the coming months.”

Both Forster and Katter’s roles start with immediate effect.

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