Channel 4 hires BT’s Zaid Al-Qassab as CMO

Al-Qassab has been in charge of the BT, EE and Plusnet brands since 2015, with Channel 4 bringing him on board to help accelerate its digital marketing strategy.

Channel 4 has hired BT’s Zaid Al-Qassab as its new chief marketing officer as part of an increased focus on data and digital marketing.

Al-Qassab, who has held the top marketing job at telecoms giant BT for four years, will lead the broadcaster’s marketing and brand strategy from September, with a particular focus on developing a data-led digital marketing strategy.

He will report directly to chief executive Alex Mahon and will sit on the organisation’s executive team. James Walker, the recently promoted controller of marketing and media (planning and social) and the new head of 4Creative will report to him.

“Zaid has a track record of leadership in marketing for some of the UK’s biggest consumer and technology brands, as well as a huge amount of experience in digital transformation and brand building,” Mahon says.

“I’m delighted he’s joining us at Channel 4 where he’ll play an integral role in ensuring our award-winning marketing becomes even more digitally focussed.”

Al-Qassab has led the brand and marketing strategy for the BT, EE and Plusnet brands since 2015, with his remit including insight, marcomms, digital brand, media, sponsorship and the in-house studio. He is also BT’s executive sponsor for ethnic and cultural diversity.

Al-Qassab is a non-executive director and council member of the Advertising Standards Authority and a board trustee at charity, WaterAid.

He was previously CMO at VC-backed startup, HouseTrip, and worked for more than 20 years at Procter & Gamble in a variety of senior marketing and operations roles, ending up as managing director for P&G Health & Beauty Care in the UK & Ireland.

“I’m absolutely delighted to be joining Channel 4, a brand I love, at such an important time in its history,” Al-Qassab says.

“The next steps for the Channel 4 brand on its digital journey will shape it for many years to come. I can’t wait to work with the award-winning Channel 4 marketing team, whose work I have admired from afar.”

Al-Qassab is due to start at Channel 4 on 1 September. He replaces Dan Brooke, who left Channel 4 earlier this year to launch his own agency.

BT’s group brand function moved under Marc Allera with effect from 1 June and Pete Jeavons has assumed an interim role as group brand director in addition to his current role.

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