Vodafone recruits senior Coke chief

Vodafone Group, the world's largest mobile phone operator, has hired senior Coca-Cola executive David Haines as its first global brand chief.

Vodafone Group, the world's largest mobile phone operator, has hired senior Coca-Cola executive David Haines as its first global brand chief.

Haines will take up the new post of global brand director in January and is expected to oversee the roll-out of the Vodafone brand on a global basis.

The company is currently rebranding the European subsidiary companies in which it has a majority stake. A wider brand advertising push is expected early in the new year.

Haines has previously held senior posts at Unilever and Mars. He was most recently deputy chairman and president of Coca-Cola Germany, where he helped steer the company's move away from centralised marketing toward more localised ad activity.

Prior to joining Coca-Cola in 1998, Haines held various sales, marketing and management positions at Mars, before becoming European marketing director.

At Unilever, Haines was based in the company's Hamburg and London offices.

In his new role, Haines will be based in Vodafone's joint European headquarters in Dusseldorf, Germany, where he will report to Thomas Geitner, Vodafone's executive board director responsible for global branding.

Earlier this week, Vodafone named Carat International as its European media planning agency for brand advertising.

The appointment followed the company's hiring of McCann-Erickson as its first global ad agency in October (Marketing, October 5).

Also featuring in the agency line-up is Springpoint, which is developing the identities of Vodafone's local subsidiaries to ensure a smooth transition to the global brand.

Mike Caldwell, corporate communications director at Vodafone Group Services, said: 'David Haines will take the lead as we move toward making Vodafone a truly global brand.'


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