My name is Mihai Gongu and I'm the Executive Creative Director of Cheil Worldwide South-east Europe recently awarded the IAB Mixx Europe Grand Prix and member in the Cheil Global Creative Council.

Prior to this I was the ECD of the digital-first integrated independent agency Tomorrow Shanghai, part of Swedish H&H group. Tomorrow has now become Media.Monks Shanghai. Under my leadership Tomorrow became Campaign Asia Boutique Agency of the Year across Greater China and lead brand agency across Mainland China for two main Pernod Ricard brands - Absolut Vodka and Ballantine’s Whisky, and also for New Balance Performance, Walmart, Dynaudio and Burberry. During my tenure, the agency won 9 new business pitches: the social retainer for Yves Saint Laurent, Rituals, Oysho and Devialet, the launch of Modern Mixology for Starbucks, a regional integrated campaign for AirAsia both, a film project for the launch of Clash de Cartier in China, Lululemon and KOHLER Eir.

I am very familiar with fast-paced projects, balancing local feedback with global HQ requirements and I am used to rolling my sleeves each day and actively helping my teams, day in and day out, not just with creative leadership and selling of work, but also concept ideas, copywriting, design and art direction references.  

Before moving to China, I was a European Creative Director, also in English, at Jung von Matt/Spree in Berlin on BMW, MINI Europe Thomas Cook Airlines, Sixt, Reporters Without Borders and OhYouWomen, among others. And made my contribution, via the campaigns that I coordinated, to Jung von Matt becoming Global Independent Agency of the Year at New York Festivals, D&AD, Cannes Lions and Lovie Awards 2018 against top competitors, the likes of Wieden+Kennedy and Droga5.

Prior to this, I was for more than 4 years the Executive Creative Director of GMP/Jung von Matt, the biggest independent agency in Bucharest, twice awarded under my creative leadership Best Independent Agency in the CEE(Central and Eastern Europe) Region by Golden Drum, the main creative festival in CEE. GMP was also the highest-ranking Romanian independent agency in the Global Effie Effectiveness Index (7th worldwide, ahead of top competitors like Fred&Farid) and the Gunn Report. 

I have also created work and coordinated teams in global network offices like BBDO Bucharest and BBDO Berlin. I have led the creative output of BBDO Bucharest also in an ECD role and helped them win their first back to back Agency of the Year titles at Art Directors Club Awards and Effie Awards, respectively. 

I am used to leading 20+ strong creative departments and growing people of various levels of expertise to maximise their potential, but also to embracing hands-on roles in which I have to ideate and craft ideas alongside my team. I am highly fluent in selling high-standard work to C-Suite levels on a daily basis. I have been at teacher of integrated campaigns at Miami Ad School Berlin and the Art Directors Club Portfolio School and Cannes Lions Academy in Bucharest.

I have worked across a multitude of accounts, both local and global, covering all types of categories from finance and automotive to FMCG and telecom. I've been a regional creative director across CEE on Whiskas(Mars Group) and a group creative director on the Allianz Worldwide team in Berlin. 

I won over 100 national and international awards including gold medals at Cannes Lions, New York Festivals, D&AD, Art Director's Club Awards and AdStars and a Grand Prix in Eurobest. I have been invited to judge in D&AD Awards, Eurobest Awards, Art Directors Club of Europe Awards, AdStars Asia, New York Festivals, Effie Awards, WINA Awards and KIAF Awards and to be a jury president at Golden Drum. 

I love creating together with my teams, at the speed of culture, content that not just solves marketing problems, but also maximises investment by generating earned media. We gave an elegant answer to discrimination with a campaign developed overnight, which went on to win the EUROBEST Grand Prix in PR. Later on, we fought post-Brexit xenophobia with empathy and ended up on CNN. We have transformed cans into billboards to make the Instagram generation fall in love with the world’s greatest brand again. We have made UEFA change their mind about a stadium suspension for the first time. We have created an app that allowed people to co-create a brand launch in of the most important BTL events of  T-Mobile in Eastern Europe. We have used tech to turn a historical landmark into a historic statement and won a much coveted Yellow Pencil at D&AD Awards in the process, we have inspired Chinese youth to express their creativity fully with Absolut100 in 100 alternative night parties across one hundred different Chinese cities, and last, but not least, we have helped Romanian women escape domestic abuse and pushed legislation against repeated abuse with the first theatre series starring actual guilt gifts belonging to victims.

I am fluent in English at a virtually native level and I also speak Italian, French and some German. I also hold a European Union passport.