Sony Ericsson’s global marketing chief Dee Dutta is leaving the company after almost six years. It is not thought that Dutta, the mobile phone manufacturer’s corporate vice-president and head of global marketing, has a job to go to.
The news comes just days after Sony Ericsson warned that first-quarter profits for 2008 could be less than half that of last year because of slowing sales of its mid- to high-end phones in Europe.
Dutta, who leaves next week, has only just appointed McCann Ericsson to overhaul Sony Ericsson’s global marketing strategy (MW January 17). McCann replaced Saatchi & Saatchi as the lead agency on the brand’s global advertising account, although Saatchi remains on the ≠roster.
The reason for Dutta’s dep≠arture is unclear, although a Sony Ericsson spokesman says that it was his decision to leave. The company’s new president Dick Komiyama adds that Dutta has made an “outstanding contribution” to the growth of the Sony Ericsson brand, particularly through its sponsorship of the women’s tennis tour.
Dutta, a former T-Mobile marketer, joined Sony Ericsson in 2002 as head of global marketing communications (MW July 18, 2006). He was handed overall control of marketing at the end of 2006 following the departure of executive vice-president and head of sales and marketing Jan Wareby (MW November 2, 2006).
Dutta told Marketing Week in January that McCann Ericsson had been appointed to “sharpen up” Sony Ericsson’s brand campaigns and make them more “engaging” for consumers.
Saatchi was appointed at the end of 2006 after Sony Ericsson, the world’s fourth- largest handset maker, parted company with Bartle Bogle Hegarty, citing “creative differences”.