IPG hires GM exec to oversee holding company's work with carmaker

NEW YORK: Martin Walsh, currently a senior executive at General Motors (GM), will join the Interpublic Group (IPG) on June 15 as SVP and president of the holding company's GM relationship.

NEW YORK: Martin Walsh, currently a senior executive at General Motors (GM), will join the Interpublic Group (IPG) on June 15 as SVP and president of the holding company's GM relationship.

Walsh will oversee IPG's efforts across its various advertising, events, digital, and PR agencies that work with the carmaker. Reporting to Michael Roth, holding company chairman and CEO, he will also serve as a single point of contract for the embattled company.

GM works with a number of IPG ad firms, including Campbell-Ewald, Deutsch, McCann-Erickson, Mullen, and R*Works. The Detroit-based company works with IPG agency Weber Shandwick among its stable of PR firms.

Walsh's move comes as GM considers filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The company has received billions in government loans.

"We all know this is a critical time in the history of General Motors, and we see it as an opportunity to come forward with a new way in which to deliver value for this key client," Roth said in a statement.

Walsh was most recently GM for the automaker's Hummer division. He also previously served as general director of marketing for the Cadillac division, executive director of vehicle sales and marketing for GM Mexico, and executive director of vehicle sales, service, and marketing support for GM.

The position is not without precedent. The holding company has a cross-agency leader for its relationship with CA, said Tom Cunningham, VP of corporate communications at IPG. It also used a similar concept in its work with Bank of America, he added.

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