Our Team Leaders

Arthur Young

Chairman & CEO
View Profile

Arthur Young

Chairman & CEO

1. How did you get into advertising?
When my father passed away, I was asked by Saatchi & Saatchi to sit on the board of Ace Saatchi. After a year on the board, I was then asked to be Chairman of the Board. After I took the role of Chairman, I decided that it was time for a change---so I ended up taking the dual role of Chairman and CEO, and the rest is history.

2. Why did you join Saatchi?
I have been in the manufacturing business for over 21 years and was the chairman of the Semiconductor Association of the Philippines. But after initially just sitting on the Board of Saatchi and seeing the opportunities and the talent that the agency had, I decided to continue to build on the legacy that my father started with Ace Saatchi.

3. What’s your favourite thing about Saatchi?
The people are my most favourite thing about Saatchi. The passion and the creativity from all the employees here are a great inspiration for me. Also, the diverse client base that we have here with the different products they offer is a wonderful learning experience for me.

4. What is the most challenging part of being in Saatchi?
Staying young as the rest of you guys---hahahhaha.

5. Share a nothing-is-impossible moment
For me, a nothing-impossible-moment is every client win and award that the agency has gotten. To me, they are all the same no matter how small or large as it shows the combined efforts of everyone to make these victories happen.

Mio Chongson

President & COO
View Profile

Mio Chongson

President & COO

1. How did you get into advertising?
Not purposively. My Economics course led me to work in a bank. After 2 years, my beautiful sister’s suitor (eventually her husband) encouraged me to try out advertising after hearing how bored I was at my job in a bank. Advertising indeed is the opposite of boring.

2. Why did you join Saatchi?
Because I’ve seen Saatchi’s work through the years, admired its consistently solid reputation, and the Manila office is just awesome.

3. What’s your favourite thing about Saatchi?
The culture. It’s amazing how everyone is wired to give their all, naturally imbibing the Nothing is Impossible spirit. That, plus having to be in the coolest office.

4. What is the most challenging part of being in Saatchi?
----

5. Share a nothing-is-impossible moment
“Nothing is impossible” spirit is inspiring. I’ve seen how it has positively affected the way I manage even my personal life.

Gen Wang-Lizares

Head of Digital & Activation
View Profile

Gen Wang-Lizares

Head of Digital & Activation

1. How did you get into advertising?
After graduation, I needed a corporate job, but one that wasn’t too structured or stiff---hence, I thought of advertising. 19 years later, I’m still in the same industry. I had already somehow fallen in love with the industry that allows me to learn something new almost every day. I love learning my way through new and emerging disciplines. Most of all, I love how the need to be in tune with Filipino consumers also consequently keeps me feeling young.

2. Why did you join Saatchi?
When I was being interviewed by Saatchi way back in 2010, I got very excited to learn that at the time, Saatchi was already way ahead of a lot of other agencies in terms of building in-house capabilities for Integration, Digital, Activation, Shopper Marketing, and other emerging disciplines. Ultimately, it was both the agency’s structure and vision that led me to decide that Saatchi was the right next step in my career.

3. What’s your favourite thing about Saatchi?
Its culture of excellence, collaboration, and openness---of which are preserved year-on-year through the agency’s very talented, but infinitely warm and passionate people.

4. What is the most challenging part of being in Saatchi?
My biggest challenge has always been (and continues to be) how I can keep myself always updated on news, innovations, new technologies, and emerging trends in both the virtual and physical world. I feel very fortunate living at a time when new advancements in science and technology are happening almost every hour, every day.

5. Share a nothing-is-impossible moment
All my "Nothing is Impossible" moments were made possible only through the collective efforts of the many collaborative and committed folks I've been fortunate enough to work with. Some of my favorites are the work we've done on the Tiger Energy Playground (where we were able to give a community who really needed it, the means to generate a playground that converts kinetic energy to actual electricity); the Cadbury Musical Bars of Chocolate (where we were able to create a gigantic chocolate fountain that also creates beautiful music from Cadbury chocolate bars); and the digital ecosystem we created to help promote the TV show JASMINE and extend the experience beyond Television (where Digital brought to life our intended effect of blurring the lines between reality and fiction).

Greg Martin

Executive Creative Director
View Profile

Greg Martin

Executive Creative Director

1. How did you get into advertising?
I’ve been interested in advertising since I was in grade school. Growing up in Thailand, I couldn’t understand the TV shows, so I was more entertained by the commercials. They were short, funny stories that I could actually understand. Meanwhile, print ads that caught my eye would be snipped out of Fortune, TIME, Newsweek, Marketing and National Geographic and filed by product category. A kid who had a love affair with words, pictures and stories, I voraciously consumed them wherever I could find them. So, getting into advertising? It was inevitable.

2. Why did you join Saatchi?
Saatchi has always been a special place for me. As a junior in college, I interned here. My first job was given to me by Saatchi as an account manager of Toyota and Gilbey’s. I won my first international awards on my second stint in Saatchi, as a young writer. And, now, it’s my third time back, and I still find it a magical place where anything is possible.

3. What’s your favourite thing about Saatchi?
It’s got a bar. And...okay...fine. I love the people too. They inspire me to keep striving to be the best version of myself.

4. What is the most challenging part of being in Saatchi?
The most challenging part is also the best part. It’s the fact that the bar for creative work is constantly being set higher on a near daily basis. And if we want to be at the tip of the spear in driving creativity in tailor-made brand solution ideas and experiences, it gets a bit daunting. That's because it’s not only a matter of who did it better, but also who put it out there first. Now, more than ever, it is of utmost importance to push ideas further, raise the level of craft higher, find courage to do the never-been-dones, and do it all at the speed of NOW. After all, we’re a company that declares that "nothing is impossible" in a world that is constantly expanding the realms of the possible.

5. Share a nothing-is-impossible moment
There have been many never-say-die moments that create the war stories behind Tiger Energy Playground, Harley-Davidson, Rebisco, Screen-Age Love Story and many other project. However, I think "Nothing is Impossible" is a daily thing. After all, at Ace Saatchi & Saatchi, the complete thought is: "Nothing is Impossible with One Team One Dream". The ability of my teams to continually surprise me with what they can do is an ongoing story. With them, Nothing is Impossible.

Except maybe being able to go home at 6pm every day. That's kinda pushing it.

Gigi Garcia

VP-Client Services Director
View Profile

Gigi Garcia

VP-Client Services Director

1. How did you get into advertising?
My first crack at advertising was selling advertising matches and promo items. In one sales call, a big client told me I’d do well in an ad agency and encouraged me to apply for an Account Manager position in Ace Compton (now Ace Saatchi), his ad agency then. I did what he suggested. That was over 3 decades ago.

2. Why did you join Saatchi?
I heard good things about Ace Compton from college and from my clients in my first sales job. It was the number 1 ad agency handling the biggest advertisers. As a young professional, it was an exciting idea to be part of this agency.

3. What’s your favourite thing about Saatchi?
The talent. The structure. The highly professional way of doing business.

4. What is the most challenging part of being in Saatchi?
It’s about preserving the Saatchi brand of work. As account leader, it’s keeping clients infatuated with the agency by ensuring consistent high-quality creative output, strategic thinking, and a level of service that will earn their respect and trust.

5. Share a nothing-is-impossible moment
A new TV campaign has been scheduled to launch at 8pm via roadblock airing in 4 TV stations. At 6pm, online (with heavy CG) was still ongoing. In less than 2 hours we had to secure internal and client clearances, prepare the documents for release, dub release tapes, coordinate with stations, etc . Materials had to be delivered personally to the TV stations scattered across the city. To make it to the roadblock, we organized and mobilized an “army” of agency people which included even those not involved in the account. By posting people at critical points in the journey from the agency to the post house to the stations, we made it just a few minutes before the roadblock. Nothing beats the feeling of relief and pride as we watched our material air simultaneously in 4 stations. Nothing is impossible when you choose the right team, train and empower them, and trust that they will deliver.

Ellen Molina

Human Resources
View Profile

Ellen Molina

Human Resources

1. How did you get into advertising?
I came from an entirely different business world. I may say I was just in the right time and in the right place when Saatchi “fell into my hands”. Thanks AJY.

2. Why did you join Saatchi?
That would be the same answer as the question, “How did you get into advertising?”

3. What’s your favourite thing about Saatchi?
The people and how we do things, distinctly Saatchi! Work is easier and fun here!
The Saatchi House itself. (Featured by spot.ph as one of the coolest offices in Manila.)

4. What is the most challenging part of being in Saatchi?
Having worked and being in HR for nearly two decades in a manufacturing company managing a workforce of thousands, I initially thought of managing a hundred or so employees would be a breeze, in an advertising agency at that. I realized now it’s how personal you could be to get to know each of them better---that makes HR life easier.

5. Share a nothing-is-impossible moment
Renovation at Saatchi a couple of years ago was just to improve our existing pantry and conference rooms for a nicer, finer place to dine and hold meetings in. I never imagined that this renovation will bring to Saatchi House more new rooms; a spacious training room and a fitness center complete with gym equipment at that! You just have to will it, believe---and it will happen!

Philip Barcelon

Finance Director
View Profile

Philip Barcelon

Finance Director

1. How did you get into advertising?
Back in 2001, Anna Testa, Publicis’ CEO and my classmate in Ateneo Graduate School asked me if I would be interested to move to an advertising agency. I said yes, and by August of 2001, I joined Hemisphere Leo Burnett as Financial Controller. My work there included handling the finance of 5 other companies---I stayed there for 6 years until 2006.

2. Why did you join Saatchi?
I tried selling life insurance and real estate, and had an independent accounting practice. Being a newbie, the income was not considerable compared to working full time. I decided to go back to Advertising and I joined Ace Saatchi on February 2009---believing Ace Saatchi could make full use of my skill set with a rewarding career in the offing.

3. What’s your favourite thing about Saatchi?
Its mantra, “Nothing is Impossible’ rubbed into my being and I did quite a number of projects in my work & personal life. Indeed, what one can do could be boundless.

4. What is the most challenging part of being in Saatchi?
Ace Saatchi & Saatchi has the most automated systems compared to our Saatchi colleagues in Asia. Converting our creative works into cash and managing the funds were the most challenging. Aligning everyone to be financially conscious and learn to consistently do their timesheets took a while but finally done.

5. Share a nothing-is-impossible moment
For about two decades, the tax issue bugged the ad industry and was the toughest hurdle. The industry led by 4As has been trying to get a BIR policy to support/dictate a specific industry practice so that the multi-million peso tax assessments would be avoided. With patience and consistent follow through, the BIR finally yielded to the industry pleading.

Carmen Antunez

Strategic Planning Director
View Profile

Carmen Antunez

Strategic Planning Director

1. How did you get into advertising?
Saatchi was my very first ad agency job. They hired me to do activation...run a nationwide cooking competition for Maggi and eventually be an AE on the Maggi account and the rest is history. I had this idea that advertising was fun. It was :) but alongside the all the fun and excitement was the stress.

2. Why did you join Saatchi?
I joined Saatchi because I was getting my chance to head up the Strategic Planning Department which was a totally new role for me. My first agency job was at Saatchi back in the glory days. A lot of the industry’s great talent trace their roots to this agency but I had seen this great agency get into a slump. Then I heard that the agency had new leadership that was keen to bring together all this great talent and turn the business around. Who wouldn’t want to be a part of that?

3. What’s your favourite thing about Saatchi?
Getting to work with all this great talent and their “nothing is impossible” spirit and being a part of work that’s not just good for the Client or the Agency but possibly good for the world.

4. What is the most challenging part of being in Saatchi?
Getting to work with all this great talent, and the push for great work can both be inspiring and tiring. Resting on your successes simply isn’t going to be possible once you get your first taste.

5. Share a nothing-is-impossible moment
Too many to mention. Simply a spirit that we all live by in a big and small ways.