Edelman's executive vice chairman for Asia-Pacific, the Middle East, and Africa is set to leave his role in March.
An internal announcement has been made at the PR agency, Campaign has learned. Desai told Campaign the past two years have been "interesting," noting it has been "hard work and a lot of fun."
The agency veteran was brought in to lead Edelman two years ago after a 20-year career at Lowe+Partners, now MullenLowe, that spanned Mumbai, Dubai, Beirut, London, Bangkok, and Singapore.
"I came in to build a strong integrated brand practice in the region," Desai said in a written statement to Campaign. "Leading the integrated teams across creative, planning, digital, PR, social, and brand communications has been a great experience. I am really proud of the teams and work I leave behind."
During his time at Edelman, the agency has won lead assignments with clients such as Arla, Unilever, Johnson & Johnson, and Direct Asia. One highlight for Desai was championing Edelman’s women’s leadership network for the region. It is not yet known where Desai might land next.
In a statement, Edelman thanked Desai for his contribution and wished him the best, noting, "Rupen built a strong integrated brand practice, establishing both depth and breadth in digital, creative, and planning. He feels the time is right for the brand team to enter the next stage."
Regional CEO Jesse Lin will work with senior leadership to shape the team and skillsets at Edelman in the transition period, the agency said.
Editor's note: This article has been updated to include comment from Edelman. This article first appeared on campaignasia.com.