Leadership

Find out more about our executive team at Carat Manchester.

Peter Metcalfe

Peter Metcalfe

Managing Director | Carat

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I joined the agency in July 2009 as a Graduate in the digital team. Since joining I have held roles across both Carat and iProspect. Having built one of the largest agency Affiliate teams of its kind in the UK, I joined the Carat board at the start of 2016 in a newly created Head of Digital role.

In October 2018, I was promoted to the position of Managing Director.

My remit encompasses both digital strategy and operations across Carat. Fundamentally, this means defining the overall agency digital strategy, enhancing existing digital channel execution, identifying emerging digital trends and navigating our talented people through the digital ecosystem;  with the end goal of delivering positive business performance for our clients. I also form a conduit between Carat and the rest of the Dentsu Aegis Network in Manchester and our wider group, in order to ensure we are accessing all the relevant digital specialisms and products for our clients.

In my spare time I enjoy eating out, travelling to new places and attending gigs with my Wife. I also support the red side of the Manchester footballing divide.

LIZ CHAPMAN

LIZ CHAPMAN

Group Business Director | Carat Manchester

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As Group Business Director here at Carat it’s my responsibility to help clients grow their business with the help of my extraordinary and very capable team.

In all the years, I’ve been doing this I can honestly say I’ve never been bored. I get to collaborate with different clients across different industries. It’s fascinating, challenging and rewarding in equal measure. Especially given the pace of change and the range of opportunities that come with life at Carat.

This is amplified by being a part of Dentsu Aegis Network, meaning that we are surrounded by people who are brilliant in their specialisms and want to work together to provide the best solutions for our clients.

I joined Carat in 2014, but I developed my love of the media industry during University in Newcastle through setting up a radio station and becoming Student Brand Manager for the Guardian. Then reality bit and I realised getting paid for doing something I loved could be a good idea, so I packed my bags and headed for the bright lights of  London.

I started my career at Starcom Motive in 1999, where I cut my trading teeth on the likes of P&G TV and honed my planning skills on a pretty diverse mix from United Biscuits, Natwest & Nintendo to T-Mobile (One2One as it was then).

I left Starcom, backpacked around the world for a year then came back and joined MediaCom where I stayed for the next 10 years in a variety of roles but focusing predominantly on planning and client services. I love getting under the skin of client's businesses; each client is unique and working with them to meet their challenges within the ever evolving media landscape makes the job addictive.

If I could share one piece of advice it would be to never stop learning, even if that means failing often and asking the “stupid” questions. Work where you’re surrounded by people smarter than you are; if you find you’re often the smartest person in the room, it’s time to move on.

What’s your party trick?
I’m the Bermuda triangle for champagne! Champagne disappears in my presence, it’s a mystery!

JAMES REDDINGTON

JAMES REDDINGTON

Group Business Director | Carat Manchester

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As one of the Group Business Directors I’m responsible for the overall management of all strategic and operational Client Relationship activities within the GBD group. This includes constantly encouraging a higher level of client insight and delivery.

Carat is the glue that holds everything together. Media owners, investment teams, clients and all parts of the Dentsu Aegis Network wheel look to you for direction. You get to work with and interact with all areas of the industry

Being a part of Dentsu Aegis Network enables me to meet with new brands as they come on board that extend what we can offer to our client base

I started my career in 1992 at Central TV, selling TV airtime to agencies. Sales is an under-appreciated skill. The most talented people in any sector or discipline know how to sell their skills to the industry.  

If I could give one piece of career advice it would be: do not be afraid of change – embrace it!

When I’m not in the office I like to spend time with my family or at old Trafford. 

If you could invite any three guests, from any time in history, to dinner, who would it be and why?

Nelson Mandela – visited Robin Island off the coast of Cape Town and the experience really moved me

Neil Armstrong – I am sure would give a completely different perspective on life

My dad – he passed away 11 years ago and I would love to see him again

CHARLES REID

CHARLES REID

Group Business Director | Carat Manchester

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Here at Carat I’m a Senior Account Director, helping clients innovate how their brands are built. Responsible for strategy, implementation, partnerships, identifying opportunities across the Dentsu Aegis Network.

Reflecting on being a part of the broader network, our mission statement of innovating how brands are built offers both opportunity as well as a challenge to think bigger, better and break convention. 

Our aspiration, to be the first pure digital network through delighting clients as well as access to specialists across the globe.

I began my media career working in classified at Manchester Evening News. I graduated with a BA (Hons) from Hull University / University of California; and worked at Guardian Media Group and Chrysalis Radio before joining the agency.

The best piece of advice I’ve been given that I’d like to share is: surround yourself with alternative views and differing styles. Inclusive planning leads to more exceptional outputs.  

My proudest career moments are when I contribute to someone’s career development I feel extremely proud.

When I’m not in the office I like to
Travel as often as I possibly can. I also love theatre and cinema.

JO McCarthy

JO McCarthy

Client Services Director | Carat Manchester

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Myself and my team manage some of our larger retail clients and deliver a full end to end service to media planning and activation from briefing to campaign evaluation across all channels.

My approach is to work in full partnership with our clients. I make it a priority to know my client’s business in detail which enables us to produce highly effective, optimised media solutions which deliver results. I often consult in many areas of my client’s business outside of media including creative direction, IT scoping and proposition work.

I particularly enjoy the collaborative and innovative culture here at Carat. We have access to the best people, the smartest insights and market leading digital resources. As such, no two days are the same and despite being in the industry for 20 years I am learning every day.

This is furthered within the Dentsu Aegis Network operating model allows us to access and deliver integrated specialism within the same P&L. This means we have the best tools in market to do our job and we get to meet some brilliant people from all over the world in the process.

I started my career at MMU doing a Retail Marketing degree. As part of my placement I worked in the marketing department for N Brown and my favourite element of the job was media. I made some great people and was lucky to be offered holiday jobs at the media agency throughout my university years. When I graduated, I was offered a placement at McCann Erikson and that’s how it all began.

To date, the proudest moment of my careers has been winning a big pitch just weeks after returning to work after a year off with my second child (and no sleep!).

How do you spend your time outside of the office?
When I’m not in the office I like to spend my time out of the office with my husband and two young daughters Matilda and Martha, with the odd night out with my friends (this used to be clubbing now more dinner and drinks). I love to shop, listen to music and I am big TV fan.

JON HALL

JON HALL

Client Services Director | Carat Manchester

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After graduating with a BA in Art History and English Literature, I started my career in Liverpool Agency RGR&J. After learning the basics, I moved on and joined JWT Manchester and then McCann Erickson.

I joined the agency as a Director in 2000. My experience is rooted within online and offline performance marketing across a wide range of clients and sectors including Financial Services, Mail Order, and Travel.

Weekends and holidays are spent balancing family life with improving my golf handicap. 

ALEXIA HARPER

ALEXIA HARPER

Client Services Director | Carat

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I head up a team of five in client services working across a diverse portfolio of clients, including travel, retail, fashion, FMCG, home furnishings, finance and response. We are essentially the client within the agency and act as an extension of our client’s marketing team; taking briefs through planning, activation and evaluation. Client services act as the conduit into the Dentsu Aegis Network wider network leading relationships through strong account management, which means really getting under the bonnet of business challenges ensuring we understand the brand, and live and breathe their target audiences. Developing people is a keen interest and an integral part of my role ensuring that bright young (and old) minds are encouraged to flourish and develop into great account managers and exceptional planners.

Evolving traditional media principles into digital transformation planning is incredibly exciting! Carat’s position as the gateway for clients into the network ensures we are correctly placed to deliver a media agnostic approach to briefs and deliver compelling planning rooted in insight. Carat has a holistic view across all channels, ensuring we deliver truly innovative solutions to our client’s business and communication challenges. We have a strong appetite to fuel growth for all clients which we do by thinking differently, being agile and having a deep understanding of media effectiveness to deliver the compelling planning to reach the right people, at the right time, in the right place.

As a part of Dentsu Aegis Network our approach is forward thinking and unrestricted, but our northern culture and ethos remains at the heart of the agency. Our people are our passion, and our unique approach to our brands ensures we have the expertise and more importantly that we’re empowered at all levels to deliver the best solution for our client’s businesses.

The best piece of advice I can share is this: do the things that scare you most

Working in a team of amazing talent my proudest moments are always seeing our great people succeed and grow. Taking fresh faced graduates into the agency and seeing their energy and excitement in approaching a brief with innovative media solutions, rooted in audience insight and using a variety of planning tool, to effectively reach increasingly fragmented audiences and drive business growth.

When I’m not in the office I like to be somewhere with a different view! If I’m not on a plane jetting off then I’m out in the countryside; I’m a great believer in changing your environment to shake off the week and give yourself a new perspective. It inspires a variety of new thinking both in and out of work.

If you could invite any three guests, from any time in history, to dinner, who would it be and why?

Sir Alex Ferguson – forever evolving his team and approach focusing on the phycology of sport, and he also likes a good bottle of red (I’m also from the red side of the city!)

Mahatma Gandhi – for his incredible courage and conviction in non-violent protest

Cleopatra – for balance and to find out what really happened with Caesar and Mark Anthony? And how do you walk like an Egyptian?

ALEX STURGESS

ALEX STURGESS

Client Services Director | Carat

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I graduated from Leicester University with a First-class honours degree in History. Whilst studying I carried out work experience with Ogilvy & Mather and secured a summer role with JWT; it was then that I first discovered my passion for media. 

My first job was as a broadcast planner/buyer before moving to ITV, where I spent 8 years as one of their senior managers - working on accounts such as bet365, Dr Oetker and PZ Cussons, as well as leading the launch of Netflix in the UK. I joined Carat in 2012, to develop holistic media solutions which deliver the strongest return against client objectives. I now lead a team responsible for advertisers within the retail, healthcare, leisure and tourism sectors – including clients such as Pets at Home, Safestyle UK, Mr Green, Silentnight Beds and the British Medical Association.

Living in ‘Last of the Summer Wine’ country I spend most of my personal time in the great outdoors – walking, running or cycling. Basically, anything which helps me to justify indulging in my other great loves of food and drink! A keen Barnsley FC fan, I’m obviously just a glutton for punishment!

Sam Hall

Sam Hall

Client Services Director | Carat

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My role is all about understanding and working with my clients to deliver against their business success ambitions.

Aside from the brilliant people, what I love about Carat is the variety it offers. As Carat is media agnostic I get to work across the full media ecosystem, every day is different.

Here at Dentsu Aegis Network there is an energy; unlike other places I’ve worked, Dentsu Aegis Network never stands still, its approach and its people have an energy which is exciting. 

I developed a love for media when studying a BA (Hons) in Creative Advertising at The University of Central Lancashire, I knew I wanted to work in the advertising industry but that the creative idea process was too subjective. Media offered me the opportunity to be creative, but with the science to back it up.

I have been lucky to receive so much great advice over my career, but there is one piece of advice I was given as a graduate which I still use every day - ‘if it doesn’t make sense to you, how can you expect it to make sense to your clients’.

What’s your party trick?
I can stilt walk.

David Johnson

David Johnson

Client Services Director | Carat

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Here in Carat Manchester I lead a client services team, managing the relationship between Carat and our clients. It’s a great team to be a part of, and it’s great to work in such an established agency brand. My careers began at Yorkshire Post Newspapers in 1999, and after a number of years working for media owners I moved to agencies in 2012.

Being a part of Dentsu Aegis Network is great because I get to work with the best talent in the industry, across multiple channels in the different network brands.

Out of the office I enjoy spending time with my family, golf, going to the gym and cycling.

LUCY BARNES

LUCY BARNES

Strategy Director | Carat

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I started my career in London and moved to Manchester to begin working at Carat in January 2013. I am an accomplished media professional with experience in some of the world's leading agencies.

I have led teams across multiple disciplines to deliver award-winning campaigns for a variety of household names. My credits include innovative, integrated strategies for brands such as Lexus, Hardy’s Wine, Pets At Home, L’Oreal, Oxfam, Nando’s, IWC Watches, Cartier, ghd, Thomas Cook and Arcadia Group.

My insight into future opportunities presented by a constantly changing communications landscape and understanding of consumers, businesses and brands ensures that I am in demand not only as a strategist but also as an innovation workshop facilitator. I aim to inject innovation into every piece of thinking and day-to-day agency life.

I am passionate about the personal development of those around me and commit regular time to train, nurture and encourage the talent that exists within the Dentsu Aegis Network, Manchester.

IAN LEES

IAN LEES

Group Business Director | Carat Manchester

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I joined the agency in December 1996 as part of the core management team. Over the years my role as has seen me manage the Digital teams, be MD of the agency’s performance marketing brand, and more recently head up Group Business Development.  I now lead a client services team responsible for the Legal, Financial, Charity and Retail sectors.  My varied roles in the business mean that I specialise in the creation, integration and management of holistic digital and offline media campaigns.

I am a keen sailor and try to keep fit, having run the New York Marathon and the Great North Run twice. At home I live on a farm with my wife and youngest of three daughters, who are both mad on horses.

CHARLIE VARLEY

CHARLIE VARLEY

Planning Director | Carat Manchester

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After 24 years working in London agencies across a diverse UK and International Client base including Tech, Motoring, Retail, Fashion and Drinks, I joined Carat in Manchester in 2006 as its first Planning Director.

Today I run a client base focusing on retail, property and tourism. I am also involved in wider UK Media Industry bodies such as The Audit Bureau of Circulations, where I am a director and member of its Finance Committee.

I’ve been accredited by UK trade magazines as the architect of two out of their top 10 “The World’s Best Campaigns”. I have collected numerous other media and effectiveness awards, including the once ever awarded “Special Award for Media” at the IPA Advertising Effectiveness Awards.

I am married with four grown up children, none of whom have followed me into the media business, and which continues to be for me, the best job in the world!

LINDSEY COOK

LINDSEY COOK

Print Director | Carat

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I started my career at TMD Manchester, where I worked for 6 years, primarily on direct response and retail clients.  I joined the agency in 1996 and since then have focused primarily on press and inserts. My knowledge of the print market ensures I always deliver the best possible value to our clients.

My experience of direct response clients includes JD Williams, Littlewoods, Plumbs, Hidden Hearing, BCA and Bradford Exchange.

On a personal note, I am married to Mike and have two children, Joshua & Archie, who keep me very busy. Our family interests including walking, visiting the cinema and standing on a touchline on a cold Sunday morning during rugby season.

Naim Halloum

Naim Halloum

Business Development Director | Carat

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In my role I identify, pitch and win new business for the Carat teams in Manchester, and support the local teams in Leeds, Edinburgh and Newcastle.

Being a part of Dentsu Aegis Network means there’s a broad network of products and services that we offer, meaning that every client meeting I have can become an opportunity! There’s a vast range of talent who work across the organisation and getting to work alongside them is great.

My careers in media began by selling classified in a woman’s magazine for Afro Caribbean women call ‘Pride’, which was published by The Voice newspaper.

The best career advice I’ve been give is to always keep an open mind and have a conversation... you’ll never know where it will lead to!

When I’m not in the office I enjoy rediscovering the UK (North of London) having spent six years in Dubai.