Dave Robinson, who was president and CEO of Hill+Knowlton Strategies covering Australia, the Middle East, Africa and south and central Asia, died at the age of 41.
He suffered a heart attack after leading a training session for employees in Dubai.
Friends and colleagues have remembered Robinson for his guitar playing, alongside his international approach to business.
Weber Shandwick EVP of corporate comms EMEA, Jim Donaldson, who recommended Robinson to replace him at H+K in the Middle East, said 'the industry has lost a big character'.
H+K Strategies global vicechairman Andrew Laurence added: 'Dave was extremely successful. Brilliant, bright and opinionated, he had tremendous cultural sensitivity. He was a man with a big heart and people will miss him.'
Stuart Smith, Ogilvy's global corporate practice MD who worked with Robinson at H+K, said: 'We've lost a real personality.'
Robinson joined H+K in 2005 as Middle East CEO.
He assumed leadership of Australia, Africa and south and central Asia in 2011.