SHANGHAI — H+K Strategies has named a new leader for its China operations, with QC Liang shifting to a new role after more than five years of overseeing the critical market. 

The WPP PR firm has hired Jun Xu as China CEO. Xu, who joins H+K after two years as MSL's Greater China CEO, reports to global chairman and CEO AnnaMaria DeSalva.

Liang, meanwhile, will focus on H+K's operations in the Greater Bay Area, including the firm's Hong Kong, Guangzhou and Shenzhen offices. Liang will now report to Xu. 

The reshuffle comes after H+K restructured its global leadership earlier this year, following the departure of international president Lars Erik Grønntun.

“The expansion of our senior management team will significantly strengthen our opportunity to participate in the growth of these high priority markets,” said DeSalva. 

The new China leadership also follows the departure of Asia-Pacific chairman Viv Lines last year. H+K's Asia markets are now led by HS Chung, aside from China, which is now overseen by Xu, and India, which is part of the EMETIA region led by Bashar AlKadhi.

Also departing in 2019 was H+K Hong Kong MD Nan Dong, a role that has since been assumed by Kristy Chan, who has been promoted from deputy MD. 

Prior to MSL, Xu was VP of sustainable business & communications for Unilever North Asia, after spending nearly 15 years at DuPont. He served as GM of DuPont China in Shanghai, and subsequently as corporate communications lead for all of Asia-Pacific. Earlier in his career, Xu spent nearly a decade with Burson-Marsteller, starting as the firm’s first local hire in mainland China, and advancing through a series of assignments across Asia Pacific.

"As a respected client leader over the course of his career, Jun has helped major global corporations advance their commercial and reputation objectives in Asia, spanning numerous industrial sectors and end markets," added DeSalva. "His roots are in the development of global agency services for China and the region. I know him to be a dedicated leader and colleague, and I look forward to working with him to help build the next era of growth for our firm."