6. Ed Wise, CEO, Omnicom Health Group

The healthcare agency business has seen more than its share of mergers, acqui­sitions, and strategic realignments during the past few years. However these moves may have played out internally, they looked to most outside observers as though they were mere cosmetic fixes.

So when Omnicom unified its numerous specialty healthcare shops under the Omnicom Health Group banner in February, industry observers were stunned by how forward-thinking the reorganization felt, not to mention how impressive it was that the myriad companies managed to keep it under wraps until the big public reveal. As part of the move, the 15 or so Omnicom Health Group agency brands were assigned into one of four categories: patient; payer; professional; or regulatory, evidence, and medical.

See also: Omnicom formalizes health group led by CDM’s Wise

Much of the credit for the planning and execution of its reinvention has fallen to Ed Wise, the longtime CDM Group exec who assumed leadership of the new entity. He pitched the restructuring as a small part of a broader effort to better support pharmaceutical and healthcare organizations at a time of market upheaval.

“Our goal is not to knock down walls and not to create homogenized brands,” Wise told MM&M in February. “What we’re going to be looking for is the connective tissues between them and opportunities to collaborate on behalf of clients.”

Clients seem sold on the Omnicom Health Group model, especially the breadth of services offered and the new scheme’s easy-to-comprehend nature. Not surprisingly, that’s by design.

“You can no longer separate the impact of how we need to talk to the professional customer without considering whether a product is on formulary,” Wise says. “This is a way to simplify the understanding of what we can offer.”


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