Havas expands with eight new staff

Hires across creative, accounts and planning in Toronto and Montreal include new ACDs and VPs.

Havas Worldwide Canada continues to grow with eight new staff members joining the Toronto and Montreal offices, including a pair of new associate creative directors and two new VPs.

Zeb Barrett has been hired as VP of planning as part of Havas’ new national planning group. Barrett was most recently strategic planning director at Rethink, which he joined in February after two years at Anomaly. He has also had similar posts at Leo Burnett and John St.

Barrett will be based out of Toronto but will also help guide the work being done by the planning group out of Montreal. The group is made up of the roughly 10 cross-platform strategists already at Havas, which have been brought together under as single collective “so they can work together in a more collaborative manner, reinforce each other’s area of expertise and offer our clients in-depth cross-channel planning capabilities,” according to Helen Pak, president and CCO of Havas Worldwide Canada.

Also in Toronto, Sarah Jue has joined as VP and group account director, leading Havas’ Hershey Canada business. Jue has been a freelance consultant since 2013 but has a mix of experience on the agency side (with Juniper Park, Cossette and Taxi) and client side (with Target Canada, RBC and Tangerine).

In the creative department, Peter Gomes and Dave Pigeon have been hired as ACDs. Gomes was most recently a senior art director at Anomaly and has also worked at Dashboard, Dentsu, Taxi and Leo Burnett, where he was part of a team that won Canada’s first Black Pencil at D&AD. Pigeon joins from Union, where he had been a senior copywriter since October 2013, and has also worked at Red Lion and Publicis.

As the agency’s creative department continues to grow, Justin Hewitt has been hired as creative resources manager in a newly-created position, having held similar roles at Juniper Park and Tribal Worldwide. Rounding out the hires in Toronto is Deric Moore, who has been hired as a senior copywriter after spending nearly four years at Y&R.

The agency has also added a senior writer in Montreal, hiring Caroline Joassin-Bruneau, who spent the last year leading adaptation at The French Shop in Montreal but has spent 15 years as a copywriter at JWT, Publicis and Saint-Jacques Vallée Y&R. On Montreal’s planning side, Alexandra Damiani has been hired as senior digital planner and content strategist from TC Media, where she led digital strategy for Elle‘s brands in Canada.

Pak says the hires have been done in response to recent new business wins and continued growth from current clients, as well as to invest in resources and talent in Canada. In April, Havas added three creative staff, including Cory Eisentraut as VP and CD, Brian Allen as ACD and Natee Likitsuwankool as senior art director. The agency also acquired mobile agency Plastic in February and has added business from Jean Coutu and BrandSource so far this year.