LONDON — Ketchum has hired Indy Selvarajah as its new executive creative director to work across clients in London and globally.

Selvarajah joins from Edelman Deportivo, where he had been creative director for the past three years, working on clients including Unilever (Dove, Persil, Rexona/Sure), HSBC, Skittles and Xbox.

Before that he was the creative director at Weber Shandwick in London, working with Nespresso, Vauxhall, Roche and the UN.

Selvarajah is Jo-ann Robertson’s first big hire since her elevation to the role of global client solutions alongside UK CEO last month.

Robertson told PRovoke: “I’ve been looking for a great creative partner for Ketchum UK and in my new global role and was really looking for three things: someone who absolutely lived and breathed culture; someone who enjoys inspiring others and wants to see creative talent flourish – and sees creativity in everyone, as that’s at the heart of my aim to democratise the agency – and third, someone who is passionate about doing work that matters, that has a legacy and impact for clients, agency and people. And then I found Indy.”

She said: “Our first conversation was so easy, because we both just got it. We’re so different but have completely shared values and vision for what our industry can achieve. Once we met it was an easy decision on my side, and it was a corker convincing him to come to Ketchum to do the best work of his life. We’ll be partners in crime for our clients.”

In his new role, Selvarajah will work alongside Ketchum London creative director Anna Rose Kerr, who has worked at the agency since 2019, after working at ad agencies including Havas and Saatchi & Saatchi, and directors including Kat Dare, who joined as a director in the consumer practice from Taylor Herring last November.

Selvarajah told PRovoke: “Jo-ann’s leadership is a breath of fresh air and it was a no-brainer in terms of the work we can do. Ketchum is the highest-awards network at Cannes and there is untapped gold in its huge clients. It’s an opportunity to do some really interesting work that matters, at a time when culture has never been so important, from equality to politics. This is a real moment for Ketchum: it’s like a start-up mentally in a big network.”

Before moving into PR agency, Selvarajah was a creative at ad agencies Kindred and Brothers and Sisters, with award-winning work including Center Parcs Bears and the Thierry Henry Sky Sports film.

Selvarajah’s awards credits include Cannes Lions, Eurobest and D&AD. Selvarajah’s most recent work is the Father’s Day Taken campaign for Dove Men: a father’s day card that supported children whose (Black) dads have been killed by police brutality.

In 2017, he launched 8AndRising, a scheme that aims to get young people from all minority backgrounds into creative roles. To date, the scheme has spoken to over 800 young people.

Selvarajah started his career as an artist, showing work at institutions including The Serpentine Gallery, Tate, Barbican and Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. He then moved into writing for TV, a “side hustle” that he continues, with a show and a screenplay in the pipeline.