WPP media arm GroupM has named Tim Castree North America CEO.
Castree joined GroupM in late 2016 as global CEO of MEC and the following year was tapped to run Wavemaker, a new GroupM shop that combined MEC with Maxus. In its first year, Wavemaker added new clients Danone and Adobe in the U.S. and Mondelez in 20 markets.
Castree succeeds Brian Lesser, who left for AT&T in 2017. He remains a member of GroupM’s global executive committee and will continue his work with the Wavemaker leadership team while the search for a new global leader for the agency is conducted.
In addition to Wavemaker, GroupM’s agencies include Mindshare, MediaCom, Essence, m/Six (a partnership with The&Partnership) and Xaxis. Reporting to GroupM’s Global CEO, Kelly Clark, Castree is now responsible for strategy and operations in the U.S. and Canada.
In addition to his leadership of Wavemaker, this year Castree also helped lead a group-wide team focused on transforming the performance of GroupM’s business in the U.S., a geographic priority for both GroupM and WPP.
“Tim sprinted into our company, creating a strong vision and structure for Wavemaker,” stated Kelly Clark, global CEO. “His focus on client growth led to the creation of a new global agency and inspired group-wide collaboration in a number of important areas. I’ve enjoyed working closely with Tim over the last two years.
"I know he will help us unlock the significant opportunities we see in the U.S. and Canada, while we work with the Wavemaker leadership team to continue the agency’s growth.”
Castree’s experience spans more than 20 years in creative, media and digital agencies.
Before joining GroupM, he was managing director of Videology in North America, U.S. COO, Publicis Group’s MediaVest, and global managing director for Starcom MediaVest. His career began with Leo Burnett in Melbourne, and he subsequently worked at FCB, Ogilvy and BBH.
Castree remains based in New York.