LONDON & AUSTIN, TX — Former Omnicom and Ketchum executive David Gallagher has taken on a new leadership role with independent agency collective The Next Practices Group, which he joins next week as a managing partner and global CEO of its new purpose, resilience and impact offering.

The Next Practices Group (NPG) was founded in 2020 by chairman Bob Pearson, CEO of marketing communications agency The Bliss Group in Austin, Texas, to bring together independent data science, data security, technology, digital media and marketing communications specialists.

As well as The Bliss Group, NPG’s founder members include customer analytics consultancy Brain + Trust Partners, social purpose consultancy ChangeX, data science firm Ringer Sciences, growth marketing media agency RocketSauce Media Labs and digital transformation consultancy Victory.

Gallagher’s appointment comes as NPG, whose agencies are mainly based in the US, looks to expand internationally. In his new role, he will support NPG agencies to serve clients in the UK, Europe, Middle East and Africa through a new operations centre in London, while leading investment and acquisition activities for agencies and start-ups outside the US.

As well as leading the expansion plans, he will build a new integrated purpose, resilience and impact (PRI) offering for clients, working with NPG chief executive Chris Foster.

Gallagher, who left Omnicom last year after 26 years to start his own agency advisory practice, working with clients including Lynn, will continue to act as an advisor to select independent agencies alongside his new role.

He told PRovoke Media: “I’ve known Bob for decades as a client, a competitor and a colleague, and we reconnected last year as I was working with agencies on potential sources of investment. He asked me to join as a partner and it fits in neatly with my own trajectory.

“NPG is all about identifying the next generation of services that will be required by CCO and CMOs. They’ve invested in a dozen agencies so far, primarily in the US, and will be a future rival to more traditional investment and holding groups. I’ve met more than 100 agencies in the past year so I have a sense of who’s up and coming.”

Gallagher added: “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to pursue my professional passions of helping clients thrive with purpose and agencies find their next level of success on a bigger scale.”

In his 26 years at Ketchum, Gallagher ran businesses in the US, UK and across Europe, and holding company Omnicom, focusing on international growth and development for its PR businesses and setting up new agencies in Europe and Asia.

Pearson said: “David will help us quickly realize two important parts of our vision – building a global next-generation proposition in marketing and communications for all of our businesses and their clients, beginning with a strong hub in London, and establishing a future-focused understanding of purpose for clients worldwide.”