The creation of J. Walter Thompson’s new global digital agency Mirum, now set to debut in February, has been a work in progress for the past year and the management team is now starting to take shape. Dan Khabie, one of the founders and current CEO of Digtaria — bought by JWT in 2010 and one of the shops that will comprise Mirum — is said to be in line to become the head of the North American operation, according to sources.
Khabie, however, in a brief phone interview, declined to confirm that and insisted that “nothing is in writing and nothing has been finalized.” He stressed that he is currently the CEO of Digitaria with no other remit at JWT. Asked if he was in discussions about taking on the broader role at Mirum, Khabie replied, “there are a lot of discussions going on about a lot of things,” and referred further questions to the JWT communications department.
Stefano Zunino, head of digital worldwide (who has also overseen JWT Latam) will serve as global head of the new agency, sources report. A JWT rep declined to comment.
In a recent update memo to staffers penned jointly by Zunino, Khabie and Gustavo Martinez, who became CEO of J. Walter Thompson Worldwide on Jan. 1, after serving as global president last year, they indicated that in addition to Digitaria, the agencies becoming a part Mirum include, i-Cherry, Lunchbox, HeathWallace, Casa, ActiveArk, XM, Quirk and TwistImage.
They noted that 1,500 people working in 34 offices around the world would take part in the new operation. (Those figures vary a bit from a recent Web posting the agency had put up temporarily disclosing some of the new shop’s details.)
“That in itself is amazing, but more incredible is the work we are doing,” the executives wrote. “We are doing global brand launches that mix online, offline, social, content, platforms and experiences. Complex implementations of the latest marketing cloud technologies from Adobe and Acquia. Oculus Rift trade show experiences. Social Campaigns that activate people and generate content to distribute across partner sites.”
“We know you have a lot of questions,” the memo went on, indicating that a Mirum intranet would soon be introduced along with a “few other tricks to build our community and give you answers.”