The appointment is one of several changes to Publicis' European regional management structure linked to the pending retirement of Georg Baums, currently regional chairman for Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
Rick Bendel, currently head of Publicis operations in the U.K., will be promoted to Mr. Van der Mee's previous position as regional chairman for the U.K., Baltic and Nordic countries. Mr. Bendel will also become a member of the Publicis executive committee, the French group's highest management board.
Publicis CEO Maurice Levy hailed Mr. Baums' 10-year tenure with the French group, noting that his leadership "is one big reason why Publicis' growth in Europe has been, and continues to be, remarkably strong."
Mr. Baums oversaw an expansion program during which Publicis shed its second-tier status in Germany to become the third-leading agency in Europe's largest advertising market.
Copyright October 2000, Crain Communications Inc.