WPP Scangroup has announced the appointment of Patricia Ithau as its Chief Executive Officer. Patricia is an accomplished business and marketing leader who brings more than 25 years of experience in senior leadership roles. Throughout her career, she has overseen the expansion of major consumer brands in Eastern Africa at companies including Unilever, Diageo/East African Breweries and L’Oréal.

She also holds a number of board positions at organizations including ABSA Bank, TradeMark East Africa, Jambojet and the British Chamber of Commerce and Industry. She is also a Trustee on the boards of Vodafone Foundation UK and MPESA Foundation, and was previously a non-executive director on the board of WPP Scangroup from 2017 to 2020.

She is currently the Regional Director at the Stanford Institute for Innovation in Development Economies. Stanford Seed aims to tackle global poverty by supporting the scale-up of SMEs in developing economies and has led to revenue growth, regional expansion and job creation for more than 200 companies.

In 2020, Ms. Ithau was awarded a Kenyan Head of State Commendation (HSC)–Civilian Division for her work in supporting enterprise development in the country. She holds an MBA in Strategic Management from the United States International University – Africa, and a B Com from the University of Nairobi. She also completed an Advanced Management Program at Strathmore Business School/IESE Business School, Barcelona, a General Management Program at INSEAD – CEDEP, and a Certificate Program in Scenario Planning at Saïd Business School, University of Oxford.

Commenting on her appointment, Patricia Ithau said, “WPP Scangroup is Kenya’s foremost marketing and communications network. I’m so excited by the opportunity to lead a company that prides itself on delivering outstanding work and creative innovation for clients. The company provides brands not only with unparalleled access to regional expertise, consumer insight and talent, but also the global reach they need to grow via the wider WPP network.”

On his part, Richard Omwela, Chairman of WPP Scangroup said, “Patricia is an inspirational business leader in Kenya and beyond, and I’m delighted to welcome her to WPP Scangroup. She has extensive experience of transformational change that delivers sustainable business growth, and an inclusive leadership approach that will support our people as they create extraordinary work for our clients.”