SHANGHAI—Jeffrey Yu, an advertising industry veteran who spent more than 25 years at Bates/141 and Publicis, has joined Edelman as CEO in China.

Yu, who most recently led social CRM startup RMConnect, will be based in Shanghai and leads Edelman China’s 320 employees across offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. A former China CEO of Publicis, Yu previously spent 25 years with Bates, where he built the firm into a WPP-owned Asian network.

Yu's arrival at Edelman follows the continued absence from the business of Steven Cao, CEO of its DJE China holding group. An Edelman spokesman said that Cao, who was detained last year, remains on administrative leave.

Part of Yu’s remit will be the continued development of Edelman China’s creative, planning and analytics capabilities as well as further strengthening of its corporate communications offer with specialized services. He will report to Bob Grove, CEO of Edelman North Asia.

"Edelman China has grown significantly over the past year and is now one of the largest businesses across our global network," said Grove. "Jeff’s extensive management experience in the creative marketing industry and expertise in data analytics will help accelerate the development of our business and differentiate our offering."